TEN INMATES could have been enjoying their freedom out of Parañaque City Jail if they didn’t die from their own grenade attack, police claimed on Friday.
Eight detainees were killed instantly while two Chinese died at the hospital after a blast rocked the office of a jail warden Thursday night.
Parañaque City Police chief Sr. Supt. Jose Carumba said the incident happened when the detainees were having a dialogue with Jail Supt. Gerald Bantag in his office at the ground floor of the jail.
The inmates were said to be objecting to their transfer to another detention cell. But in the heat of the discussion, one of the inmates threw a grenade. Others were later discovered to have been carrying pistols and fan knives.
Carumba said a series of gunshots were heard inside Bantag’s office, followed by two loud explosions.
The dead were identified as Waren Manampen, Ronald Domdom, Rodel Domdom, Danilo Pineda, Joseph Villasor, Oliver Sarreal, Jeremy Flores and Jonathan Ilas, and Chinese Jacky Huang and Yonghan Cai.
All had drug charges apart from Villasor who was charged with robbery and homicide and Ilas who had a gun violation and robbery case.
“Maybe, while they’re trying to take the warden hostage, the grenade exploded,” Carumba surmised.
Bantag, meanwhile, was seriously wounded and was being treated at the Ospital ng Parañaque.
Responding scene-of-the-crime operatives from the Southern Police District found a sub-machine gun and an empty magazine, two safety pins of a hand grenade, 14 pieces of spent shells from a caliber .9mm, and two deformed bullets at the crime scene.
A lockdown has been in place at the city jail following the violence, while some officials have been sacked over questions on how the weapons slipped through the jail.
Chief Insp. Ariel Sanchez of the Parañaque Police Station Investigation and Detective Management Branch said the Bureau of Jail Management and Penology (BJMP) could be held liable.
“The regional director has ordered the relief of all second shift duty personnel, including the warden and the duty Senior Officer of the Day to give way to an impartial investigation. They were replaced by members of the Special Tactics and Response Team,” Sr. Insp. Xavier Solda, spokesman of the BJMP, said in a news briefing.
Some inmates, meanwhile, held a noise barrage to express their anger as they claimed that their 10 co-prisoners were not armed and were intentionally killed.
Relatives of the dead inmates also went to the jail and cast doubt on the police’s account.