Reelectionist councilor wounded; vice mayor's bodyguard shot dead in 2 Pangasinan incidents

April 13, 2013 1:57 am 

LINGAYEN, Pangasinan, April 12 —A reelectionist councilor of Mangatarem town was wounded when he was hit by a stray bullet while observing a mini-campaign rally of a rival party in Mangatarem town while a bodyguard of a reelectionist vice mayor was shot dead in San Manuel town.

The victim of the first incident that happened in Barangay Caoile Olegario, Mangatarem at about 9:20 p.m. on Thursday, April 11, was incumbent Councilor Raymund Cruz, 58, who is running his reelection under the Pwersa ng Masang Pilipino (PMP).

On the other hand, dead on the spot when ambushed by three armed men in Barangay San Juan, San Manuel at 4:30 p.m. Thursday, April 11, was Darwin Saculles, 35, a municipal government employee and said to be a bodyguard of Vice Mayor Salvador Perez of San Manuel.

Councilor Cruz, a resident of Barangay Punglo Baleg, Mangatarem, sustained one bullet wound in his left arm and rushed himself to Dr. Velasquez Clinic on Mabini Street in Poblacion, Mangatarem for treatment before he was transferred to the Villaflor Hospital in Dagupan City where he is now recuperating. .

The incident happened when Cruz went to observe the mini political rally being conducted by the local candidates of Liberal Party (LP) headed by mayoralty candidate Cristina Cruz and vice mayoralty candidate Nelson Cruz.

According to the victim, while at the mini-rally, he noticed a group of spectators who were in hurry to leave the place and noticed that they seemed to be in fear. That was why he decided to also leave the place and headed to his parked motorcycle..

He was already on board his motorcycle when he heard a burst of gun fire from an unknown direction. Momentarily, he felt as if his left arm was hit by a bullet. Wounded, he still managed to rush himself to the Dr Velasquez Clinic on Mabini Street in Poblacion, Mangatarem for immediate treatment.

He was later transferred by relatives to the Villaflor Hospital in Dagupan City for further medical treatment where he is now in stable condition and recuperating.

The police are now studying on whether the incident is related to politics in view of the tight political rivalry among members of the same family in Mangatarem town.

Also being investigated by the police to determine if it was also related to politics was the ambush staged by three unidentified armed men that killed Saculles while he was proceeding to the house of his sister-in-law in Barangay San Juan, San Manuel to pick up a package sent by his wife from Italy.

The victim sustained multiple gunshot wounds in different parts of his body and was rushed to the Sacred Heart Hospital, Urdaneta City by responding policemen while the suspects fled immediately to unknown direction.

The victim was also possibly armed as evidenced by the recovery by responding policemen from the crime scene of two magazines for Caliber 45 pistol. However, the firearm could not be found.

The crime scene is still being processed by Scene of the Crime Operatives (SOCO) and PNP Crime Laboratory, Urdaneta City led by Senior Inspector Emeterio Macaraeg. (PNA)



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