CATBALOGAN CITY – Police Chief Superintendent Elmer R. Soria, Regional Director of Police Regional Office 8, disclosed that the initiated assault by the police to the hostage-taker who held hostage his fellow employees is a last option since the negotiation between the Crisis Management Task Group failed and to prevent further bloodsheds.
The hostage-taker held hostage, for nearly two hours Friday afternoon (January 18), the employees at the Social Security System branch at the corner of St. Bartolome St. and Taft Ave. in Catbalogan City, Samar.
“Our men were directed not to result in excessive use of force but situations like this calls for appropriate police response to prevent further loss of life especially the hostage and innocent civilians,” Soria said.
Soria identified the hostage-taker as one Patrocinio Dabucol y Ribedoso, alias Pat, 48, married, a resident of Brgy. 13, Catbalogan City and a security guard of Probe Security Agency assigned at said SSS branch.
Investigation conducted by Catbalogan City Police Station disclosed that at around 1:00 o’ clock Friday afternoon, the suspect was having conversation that escalated into heated argument with the victims Melvin Oliva y Malbas, 34, married, a resident of Purok 6, Brgy. 9, Catbalogan City, his fellow Security Guard, and Dionito Matic y Mengote, 38, of Brgy. Guinsorongan of said city and a Senior Clerk of said office.
Dabucol reportedly got irked and shot Oliva and Mate with his issued .38 caliber revolver, hitting the two on their abdomen. Oliva was able to run outside and seek treatment at Samar Provincial Hospital, some 500 meters from the SSS office. Matic and another employee Christabel Hilvano, of Brgy. Guinsorongan, were left inside the office and were held hostages by Dabucol while other SSS employees scampered out of the office.
Upon cognizance of the report, elements of Samar Police Provincial Office and Catbalogan City Police Station responded to the scene and a Crisis Management Task Group was eventually activated with Police Senior Superintendent Eusebio Mejos, Samar Provincial Director, as Ground Commander.
A negotiation ensued to contain the situation with Mayor Coefredo Uy and Police Superintendent Avelino Doncillo, city police chief, negotiating with the help of the suspect’s wife and daughter and tried to convince the suspect to yield in.
Hostage Hilvano was eventually released after 20 minutes and after careful assessment of the situation with the suspect refusing to release the remaining hostage, an assault was initiated at around 2:45 o’ clock in the afternoon resulting in a shoot out and critical wounding of the hostage taker.
The suspect and hostage Matic were immediately brought to Samar Provincial Hospital for medical treatment wherein attending physician Dr. Francisco Catalan pronounced the hostage-taker dead with hypovolemia secondary to multiple gunshot wounds as cause of death at around 4:20 p.m. The two wounded victims, meanwhile, are in stable condition.