Don't focus on one riding-in-tandem killing, says Dela Rosa

JUST ONE CASE. PNP chief Dela Rosa says the killing of the grade 5 student was an isolated case. File photo by Alecs Ongcal/Rappler

JUST ONE CASE. PNP chief Dela Rosa says the killing of the grade 5 student was an isolated case.

File photo by Alecs Ongcal/Rappler

MANILA, Philippines – The death of 14-year-old Mike Lorenz Salonga, who was shot dead by unidentified suspects on Friday, November 3, is just one of many cases of riding-in-tandem shootings, Philippine National Police (PNP) chief Director General Ronald dela Rosa said.

"Maraming namamaril, maraming namamatay, but ito ngayon, nagco-conduct tayo ng operations against riding-in-tandem. Marami tayong napatay, maraming nahuli. And ito may nangyari pa ring isa. Isa lang 'yan," Dela Rosa said on Monday, November 6 during his regular conference with reporters at Camp Crame, Quezon City.

(There are many who shoot, there are many who are killed. Now, we're conducting operations against riding-in-tandem shooters. We've killed and caught a lot. Then another incident happens. It's just another case.)

Dela Rosa urged the public to look at the "bigger picture" of riding-in-tandem shootings, instead of focusing on one death such as Salonga's. "Sana tingnan natin ang pangkalahatan," Dela Rosa said. (I hope we see the entirety [of the problem].)

"'Pag marami 'yan, hindi mo papansinin siguro kapag sabay-sabay, kapag may nangyari sa isang munisipyo, isang siyudad, sabay-sabay 'yan. Pero iisa lang ang nangyari, napapansin mo," Dela Rosa lamented.

(If numerous incidents take place simultaneously, I think people won't notice. But if one incident happens, you'll take notice.)

This follows the PNP waging a war against riding-in-tandem killers, or as they call it "motorcycle-riding suspects", after President Rodrigo Duterte took the war on drugs out of their hands. (READ: PNP's next target: 'Riding-in-tandem' shooters)

Dela Rosa nonetheless admitted that "one life [taken] is too many", ordering cops to conduct an investigation into Salonga's case. It is not clear, however, which unit he was directing. – 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.

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