Cebu News

Victim trying to open explosive: Vintage bomb kills welder

The Freeman

CEBU, Philippines - A welder was killed while his friend was injured after a vintage bomb they were trying to saw off exploded inside a machine shop in Sitio Kamanggahan, Upper Pakigne, Minglanilla, Cebu early morning yesterday.

It was a grisly death for Michael Respecio, 48, after the explosion tore his body apart. His companion, identified as Leonilo Adlawan, 43, of Inayagan, City of Naga, Cebu, was seriously injured.

“Napikas ang lawas ni Michael unya ang tuway-tuway nasiak. Kato iyang kauban nahabwa ang tinai. Grabe gyud to ilang angol,” said Miguel Lañojan, Respecio’s neighbor.

Respecio was already dead when brought to the Minglanilla District Hospital while Adlawan, who was in critical condition after his guts spilled out and his body was littered with several shrapnel wounds, was being attended to at the Vicente Sotto Memorial Medical Center in Cebu City as of press time last night.

Initial investigation showed that Adlawan found a vintage bomb and along with Respecio decided to open it past 1 a.m.

Joan Jaime said Respecio, her live-in partner, never told her about the vintage bomb and what they were doing with it in their shop. She said she was asleep with their four year-old son when the explosion jarred her awake.

The police said Respecio was using an electric grinder on metal casing when the bomb exploded.

Senior Police Officer 1 Rangie Lopez, Minglanilla Police Station investigator, said they suspected that the victims tried to open the bomb at such an unholy hour to ensure that no one was around to see them do it.

Alarmed neighbors rushed to where the explosion was and saw Respecio’s badly mangled body and a seriously injured Adlawan.

“Nagtuo gyud ko og naglinog kay niuyog man among gikatulgan. Pagtan-aw nako sa shop samdan naman sila,” a teary-eyed Jaime told The FREEMAN.

The explosion was so strong  Adlawan was thrown off several meters away. Respecio, who was using the grinder,  took the full brunt of the blast, resulting to his body being torn apart.

Information gathered by The FREEMAN showed that it was Adlawan who brought the vintage bomb to Respecio. It was allegedly the second bomb they tried sawing off after successfully opening up the first one and finding a “diamond” inside

Neighbors, though, doubted the claim, especially that they have not seen the so-called diamond.

Yesterday, responding police officers recovered fragments of the bomb at the crime scene.

Lopez said they tried speaking with Adlawan on the way to VSMMC but the man did not answer and just kept on crying in pain.

Lopez said they will further investigate the incident to determine what bomb it was and if Adlawan still had others that he kept hidden.  — (FREEMAN)

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