A man who is suspected of being behind the massacre of five people, including three children, in Baguio City last April 6 has surrendered to Manila Vice Mayor Isko Moreno.
Philip Tolentino Avino, alias Michael Geronimo 31, was convinced by his brother SPO3 Jeff Sta. Ana and uncle Barangay Chairman Chit Tolentino to turn himself in.
It was learned that Avino approached Moreno last Monday. He would be turned over to Baguio police for interrogation.
The victims were found dead with stab wounds in their home in Baguio Monday afternoon. The were identified as Joey Nociete, 9; Dave John de Guzman, 7; Raymond Delmendo, 8; Jacquelyn Kale Nociete, 19 and Jonalyn Lozano, 32, a househelp.
Avino denied he had something to do with the killings. He said he left Baguio for Pasay City morning last Monday.
“My only mistake was that I failed to keep my bus ticket,” he said.
He also asked the Baguio police to freed his live-in partner.
Avino said he only learned that P100,000 reward was put up for his arrest after a co-worker at the Baguio market texted him.
He said he was being framed.
Baguio police commander Senior Supt. Rolando Miranda dismissed the denial of Avino as an alibi.
“In the first place, we do not know Tolentino. However, all the pieces of evidence and testimonies point to him as the culprit, following our initial investigation,” Miranda said.
“We hope he will cooperate,” the police official added.
The motive has not been determined, but robbery was ruled out following the discovery that nothing was missing from the crime scene.
JAIME R. PILAPIL