CALOOCAN police accused of killing senior high school student Kian de los Santos were given recognition days after the teen’s death, National Capital Region Police Office (NCRPO) Chief Oscar Albayalde said on Wednesday.
Albayalde said Senior Superintendent Chito Bersaluna, then Caloocan City police chief, said Police Officer 3 (PO3) Arnel Oares and PO1 Jeremias Pereda were among the members of the precinct that was cited as the “Best City Police Station” during the Police Service Anniversary in August.
Albayalde said the station was cited as having the “highest number of arrested and neutralized most wanted persons” and “station with the highest accomplishment in the drug war”.
The 116th police anniversary was celebrated at the NCRPO in Bicutan, Taguig City last August 18, the same day that Carl Arnaiz, a former student of the University of the Philippines in Diliman, was killed also by Caloocan policemen.
Albayalde said, however, that the Caloocan City police station was not the only one that was honored.
He also said that “there are many reasons why a station becomes the best police office”.
“It’s just region-wide, not nationwide,” Albayalde added.
On August 18, Arnaiz was killed by police responding to a call for help by a taxi driver who claimed that he was robbed.
In a search for the suspect, police said that the driver identified Arnaiz.
Police claimed that marijuana and shabu were recovered from Arnaiz who allegedly engaged them in a “shootout”.
According to PAO, an autopsy on Arnaiz indicated that he was heavily tortured, dragged away, handcuffed, and was kneeling when he was shot to death.
Two days before Arnaiz was killed, de los Santos also died in the hands of Caloocan police during an anti-crime operation.
Caloocan police claimed de los Santos fought back by pulling out a gun and firing at them.
However, witnesses and a CCTV footage indicated that de los Santos was unarmed and shot from behind as he pleaded for his life.