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Duterte assures fair probe on Kian’s slay

By GENALYN D. KABILING, with reports from Jeffrrey Damicog, Aaron Recuenco

President Duterte has offered his condolences to the family of slain Kian Delos Santos, assuring that an investigation is underway to determine truth and accountability.

The President said the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) has started a probe on the death of Delos Santos in the wake of allegations he was killed in cold blood by the police during a recent anti-drug operation in Caloocan City.

“I have expressed my condolences. Kung tanggapin ng pamilya, good. Kung hindi nila tanggapin, eh ‘di fine with me,” he said during an assembly of Philippine Air Force dragon boat team in Malacañang last Tuesday night.

“There is an investigation conducted by the NBI. So pagdating ng panahon na talagang totoo, wala tayong magawa.

They’ll have to face the consequences,” he said, about the cops implicated in the killing of the teenager.

Delos Santos, 17, was among the dozens killed during the police operations against illegal drug trade in Metro Manila and Bulacan province last week.

His death triggered public outcry after a CCTV footage showed he was being dragged by cops to the place where he was found dead. The video contradicted the police claim that he was shot after supposedly firing at cops.

The President, meantime, refused to visit the student’s wake pending an investigation into the incident.

Duterte said his presence might only spark public perception he was seeking forgiveness for the incident and abandoning the cops involved the case.

“The thing is, I will not go there because even if it is true, it is under investigation,” he said.

“‘Pag pumunta ako doon, the perception of the public is: ‘Baka totoo talaga ‘yan kasi pumunta nga doon si Presidente, naghingi ng patawad.’ Ayoko ‘yung ganon because I go there, I put down the police,” he said.

Meanwhile, Justice Secretary Vitaliano Aguirre II has expressed doubt over the credibility of witnesses in the slay Kian now in the custody of Senator Risa Hontiveros.

“Of course it will affect the credibility of these witnesses considering the bias of their handler,” Aguirre said yesterday.

Hontiveros is a member of the opposition and has been one of the vocal critic of the administration of President Duterte.

The Senator took into custody the three witnesses when she visited the wake of Kian over the weekend.

Kian tested negative on paraffin test conducted by forensics expert of the Philippine National Police (PNP).

The findings contradicted, again, the claims of the after-operations report of the local police which stated that Delos Santos fired the first shot on the cops which resulted in a firefight and eventually led to his death.

“Paraffin cast taken from the both hands of one Kian Loyd delos Santos gave negative result to the test of gunpowder nitrates,” the summary of the result of the examination from the PNP Crime Laboratory reads.

The result of the paraffin test is deemed important, what with the report that a .45 pistol was recovered from the left hand of delos Santos.

The same report also revealed that the gun recovered from Kian tested positive for gunpowder nitrates, which means it was fired by the holder.

It was recalled that based on the witness accounts, the policemen on civilian clothes were gave Kian a gun and forcing him to fire it. He was also ordered to run after firing the gun.

But the autopsy conducted by the police forensics experts contradicted the results of an expert tasked by the Public Attorney’s Office (PAO) which stated that Kian suffered three bullet wounds.

“There were two gunshots wound. They were saying that it was three so now it is clear, based on our results from Crime Laboratory, that they stand with their findings that there were only two,” said Chief Supt. Aurelio Trampe, director of the PNP Crime Laboratory.

Trampe said the wounds are both in the heads with the entry points on the left ear and at the back of the left ear, one of the exit points in the right ear.

Jane Monzon, officer-in-charge of the PNP Crime Laboratory Medico Legal Office, said it was the Crime Laboratory which first conducted the autopsy on the cadaver of Delos Santos.

“I cannot really make any comment on that, how they recognized the wound on the back or any side of the body but based on our report of our medico legal officer, there are only two entry and exit,” said Monzon when asked of the PAO findings.

Monzon also disclosed that there was no tattooing on the bulletwounds of Kian, an indication that the tip of barrel of the gun used were more than 60 centimeter from the entry points of the head.

She, however, did not discuss the trajectory of the bullets that killed Kian.