'Makonsensiya naman kayo,' Dela Rosa tells suspects in Castillo killing

MANILA, Philippines – Philippine National Police chief Director General Ronald dela Rosa urged suspects in the death of law freshman Horacio Castillo III to surrender, saying he believed they were just carried away by the "challenge of manhood" during the hazing rites of the Aegis Juris fraternity. 

"Makonsensiya naman kayo (Please have a conscience)," Dela Rosa said in his surrender message to the suspects in an interview with reporters on the sidelines of his visit to the Chinese General Hospital, where Castillo was brought to on September 17.

In making his appeal, Dela Rosa added: "Alam kong hindi kayo masasamang tao. Hindi kayo mga kriminal. Siguro nadala lang kayo sa bugso ng damdamin o 'yung challenge of manhood... Na-challenge lang kayo."

(I know that you're not bad people. You're not criminals. Maybe you just got carried away by a rush of emotions or the challenge of manhood... You were just challenged.)

On Wednesday, September 20, the Manila Police District (MPD) identified the 3 suspects as John Paul Solano, the supposed good Samaritan who brought Castillo to the Chinese General Hospital; and Antonio Trangia, and his son, Ralph, an Aegis Juris officer.

The vehicle that Solano allegedly flagged down to bring Castillo to the hospital is registered to Antonio Trangia. Ralph reportedly left the country on Tuesday, September 19 – a day before he was tagged as a suspect.

The police had also named 14 Aegis Juris members as persons of interest, and had placed them on immigration lookout.

Dela Rosa said that the suspects have to face the consequences of their actions.

"'Wag ninyong iwasan itong problemang ito. Harapin ninyo ito. Nangyari na eh, harapin natin ito (Don't dodge this problem. Face it. It happened already; face it)," Dela Rosa said. 

The PNP chief vowed justice for Castillo and his family, saying he understands the pain of parents who lost a child.

"Ako rin, may anak din ako. Pareho tayong parents; alam ko ang sakit ng damdamin na 'yung nae-experience ngayon. We sympathize with you. Rest assured that the PNP will continue to seek for truth and justice sa pagkamatay ng inyong anak," Dela Rosa said.

(I also have a child. We are both parents; I know the pain that you're experiencing now. We sympathize with you. Rest assured that the PNP will continue to seek for truth and justice in the death of your child.) – Rappler.com


Rambo Talabong

Rambo Talabong covers security, crime, and the city of Manila for Rappler. He was chosen as a Jaime V. Ongpin Fellow in 2019 for his reporting on President Rodrigo Duterte’s war on drugs.