President Duterte is ready to join the policemen involved in the killing of Albuera, Leyte Mayor Rolando Espinosa Sr. if they are sent to prison.
The President said he would “not abandon” the policemen doing their job in accordance with the law, insisting he is inclined to believe the account of the Philippine National Police-Criminal Investigation and Detection Group Region 8 on the death of Espinosa.
“I would insist the version of the police in the killing of Mayor Espinosa is the correct version in so far as I am concerned,” the President during the launching of the Pilipinong May Puso Foundation Inc. in Davao City Friday night.
“I will not abandon them. If they go to prison, so would I,” Duterte added.
Duterte said the policemen have nothing to worry “if they acted strictly in obedience to my order, in accordance with the rules of law.”
“I’ll answer for you. And if need be, I will go to prison for them. And if I rot in prison, so be it,” he said.
Duterte said if he is sent to jail, he will likely spend five to six years in jail since he is already 72-years-old.
He said while in jail, he may even catch up on reading his books piling up at home.
Espinosa was shot dead in a supposed shootout with members of the PNP-CIDG team trying to serve a search warrant on November 5.
The involved policemen appeared in a Senate inquiry and testified they merely acted in self-defense when they shot and killed Espinosa. Senators probing the incident, however, noticed glaring inconsistencies in the policemen’s testimonies that indicate the killing of Espinosa was premeditated. (GENALYN D. KABILING)