PRO-8 probes two Catbalogan explosions
Eileen Nazareno-Ballesteros, Miriam Garcia Desacada (The Freeman) - March 5, 2017 - 12:00am

TACLOBAN CITY, Philippines — Two separate explosions in Catbalogan City occurred Friday dawn, and the police are now conducting investigations on the incidents that injured a 6-year-old boy and a 17-year-old girl.

Chief Superintendent Elmer Beltejar, director of the Police Regional Office-8, said the first explosion took place at around 1:30 a.m. at Barangay Canlapwas in Catbalogan, where the two minors were wounded as a result.

The two juvenile victims suffered slight injuries in their arms and were brought to the Samar Provincial Hospital for medical attention.

Twenty minutes later, another explosion transpired at P-1 in Barangay Silanga, about 12 kilometers north of Catbalogan City proper, where a hand grenade was thrown inside the gate of the house of Lucio Pacle, causing damage to the property and to his Mitsubishi Pajero car parked inside at the time.

In his report, Superintendent Edwin Barbosa, chief of the Catbalogan Police, said it was possible that the two explosions were done by the same perpetrators.

Barbosa said eyewitnesses described the explosives throwers in the separate blasts were two men, in black jackets and bonnets covering their faces, riding on a black motorcycle.

Further investigation revealed that, in the first blast, a homemade explosive device was thrown at the fence of the barangay official Maria Elfa De Jesus' house where the teenage victim was waiting for a ride, while the child was sleeping outside his house, only a few meters from the explosion site.

Beltejar vows that the police would identify the perpetrators to give justice to the victims and for disturbing the peace of the community. He said a Special Investigation Task Group (SITG) shall be created to investigate the incident.

He also appealed to the public for support to the police in their investigation for the immediate identification and subsequent arrest of the suspects. (FREEMAN)

ELMER BELTEJAR
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