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Arrested police colonel suffering from psychosis

The police colonel who was caught engaged in a shabu session in Las Pinas City has been found suffering from psychosis, the Philippine National Police (PNP) disclosed yesterday.

“Based on neuropsychiatric test, it says he has psychosis secondary to substance abuse,” said Chief Supt. Aurelio Trampe, director of the Crime Laboratory.

“He’s already unfit but we have to follow administrative process,” he added.

Despite his mental instability due to repeated drug use, it may take at least three months before Supt. Lito Cabamongan is dismissed from the Philippine National Police (PNP).

Director General Ronald dela Rosa, PNP chief, admitted that he is helpless in dealing with the case of Cabamongan due to the strict protocol being followed as part of the right of any accused for due process.

“If I have my way, he would have already been dismissed. But we have to follow due process,” said Dela Rosa.

Dela Rosa earlier explained that legal technicalities, even the prescribed time in dealing with administrative cases against policemen are usually becoming a reason why errant cops would be reinstated from the police service despite glaring evidence of guilt.

This is the reason, he said, why they have to follow the concept of due process in dealing with even the vilest police scalawags.

Cabamongan, who used to head the satellite office of the PNP Crime Laboratory in Alabang, Muntinlupa City, was quick to deny allegations of drug use despite being caught redhanded in a shabu session and even testing positive in a drug test.

He even claimed human rights violations allegedly committed by his arresting officers.

Based on PNP rules, the investigating body is required to finish any administrative cases within 90 days.

Dela Rosa, for his part, said he is sure that Cabamongan was recruited in a normal state of mind.

“He is normal when he entered the police service because he was admitted. But when he became a policeman, saka siya nabuwang,” said Dela Rosa.

“Psychosis secondary to drug abuse? This means that he went crazy because of drug abuse,” he added.

A background check revealed that Cabamongan is a recruit for the Special Action Force in 1991 and became an official with a rank of Inspector through Lateral Entry in 1996.

But he was relieved from his post as head of the Crime Laboratory Satellite Office last March 23 over two incidents in moviehouses of a popular mall on March 19 and March 21. (AARON B. RECUENCO)