Iloilo first district Rep. Richard Garin and Guimbal town mayor Oscar Garin are now in hot water after they allegedly mauled and threatened a police officer assigned at local police Station in Guimbal, Iloilo Wednesday early dawn.
Police Officer 3 Federico Macaya, 41, of Brgy. Sambag, Jaro, Iloilo City, suffered injuries, including a bruise on his left eye after the incident which happened around 3:30 a.m.
The incident reportedly happened after the congressman accused Macaya of convincing the minor victim of a commotion at the town plaza on December 22 not to file a case against the suspect, a son of the member of the Sangguniang Bayan on Guimbal.
The victim, a son of an overseas Filipino worker (OFW), refused to file a case against the suspect to keep it from his parents who are working abroad, Chief Supt. John Bulalacao, Police Regional Office 6 (PRO6) director, said in a statement.
“This made the Garins furious which led to the mauling of PO3 Macaya who was the investigator of the minor’s case,” he added.
Macaya was called by Senior Insp. Antonio Monreal Jr., the town’s chief of police, to proceed to the town plaza and meet with the congressman and Guimbal Mayor Oscar Garin.
When he arrived, the congressman ordered Monreal to disarm Macaya. Garin then grab Macaya’s handcuff and handcuffed the police. He then kicked the police officer several times, slapped him twice, and spat on his face.
Not satisfied, Garin even fired a gun while Mayor Garin was watching and reportedly pointing a gun to Macaya, Bulalacao said.
“I have talked to Congressman Garin over the phone regarding the matter and he already apologized for what he had done against my personnel. I accepted his apology but I could not bear how he degraded and humiliated our uniform and our profession as police officers. I could not imagine how a lowly PNP personnel in uniform was mauled helplessly,” Bulalacao said.
He cited that what happened was an “affront to my leadership”.
Upon receipt of the report, Bulalacao initially relieved Monreal “ for his non-action and his failure to arrest the Garins” and cancelled the detail of two PNP security personnel of the congressman.
Bulalacao said he will request the Department of the Interior and Local Government for the cancellation of the deputation of Mayor Garin so he will no longer have power or authority over the Guimbal police officers.
He added that PRO6 will help Macaya file charges against the Garins.
Bulalacao said the congressman will be slapped with cases of physical injuries, assault to persons in authority, alarm and scandal and grave coercion while a case of grave threats will be filed against Mayor Garin.
“I have nothing personal against the Garins but I have grounds and responsibility to support my personnel and to protect and uplift the image of the police organization,” he said.
The incident has been reported to Philippine National Police chief, Director General Oscar Albayalde, he added.
Meanwhile, Congressman Garin, in a statement, apologized for his actions and also took full responsibility for what he did.
“I just wanted to make it clear that my actions are not directed to the PNP as an institution, or against its officers and personnel.
My actions were a mere display of extreme frustration towards one, single PNP personnel who I believed committed a great disservice to the people of Guimbal,” Garin said.
Congressman Richard Garin is the husband of former Health Secretary Janette Garin who is involved in the Dengvaxia Controversy.