BAGUIO CITY: Supporters of contending mayoralty candidates in Lagayan town in Abra clashed on Monday morning in the village of Pang-ot, killing a village watchman and wounding two others.
Cordillera police said a gunfight occurred at about 7:30 a.m., where Barangay tanod (watchman) Sacarias Manuel died, while Joel Donato, a reported supporter of mayoralty bet Jodel Crisologo, and Randy Viloria, son of the Pang-ot village chieftain, were wounded.
Crisologo, son of Tineg town Vice Mayor Edwin Crisologo, is challenging incumbent
Lagayan Mayor Jendricks Luna in the mayoral race and three other candidates. Jendricks is the son of former Abra Rep. Cecille Luna, who is running for Congress.
Soldiers stationed near the area responded, and caught one Rodel Villa on board an Isuzu pickup armed with a caliber 38 long barreled revolver.
Authorities seized several firearms from their supporters – a caliber .45 pistol from Carlos Donato Almazan, a 9mm pistol from 20-year-old Rochelle Donato, and a caliber .22 revolver from 53-year-old Merly Cabangon.
The wounded victims were taken to the hospital, and the rest were brought to the town police station for booking.
Last week, Tineg vice mayor Crisologo was tagged for murder in connection with the ambush of Sangguniang Bayan (SB) candidate Nathaniel Guyo and several others on March 31 that killed one of the latter’s supporters.
While Crisologo claimed he has not received any subpoena on the alleged charge, Abra police said murder charges were filed on April 5 against him for the murder of 56-year-old Gaboy Liwag, who was with Guyo, along with Israel Parado, Jefrey Pizarro, Jessalyn Leyad and Sharmaine Daquiwag.
Guyo’s and the victims were on board a vehicle driven by Pizzaro from Bangued, en route to Lapat Balantay in Tineg, and was passing the Tineg multi-purpose hall, where they saw incumbent Crisologo, his wife, incumbent Mayor Corinthia Crisologo, and four others.
They said they saw Crisologo board a gray Toyota Hilux pickup, tailed their vehicle, and upon reaching the junction on Sitio Tapayen, the group of Crisologo fired at them.
Responding policemen found Guyo’s pickup truck down the river in Sitio Madignak.
Liwag was found lifeless with a gunshot wound on the nape, Abra police said.
Abra was placed under Comelec control a week before the Monday polls.