Crime scene where Carl Arnaiz was killed ‘staged’ – PAO

Rambo Talabong

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Crime scene where Carl Arnaiz was killed ‘staged’ – PAO
PAO Forensic Lab Director Erwin Erfe says there are no bullet marks in the crime scene to prove that a shootout happened. No slugs were found either.

MANILA, Philippines – The crime scene where Carl Arnaiz was killed was apparently staged, the Public Attorney’s Office forensic lab chief said on Friday, September 8.

“From the forensic side, this is a staged crime scene,” PAO Forensic Lab Director Erwin Erfe said a day after his team examined the area along C3 Road where a supposed shootout happened between the teenager and Caloocan City police.

Undisturbed ‘yung vegetation, undisturbed yung soil, Wala kaming nakitang slug. Ang conclusion namin – wala ring blood, ‘no – secondary crime scene ‘yun,”  Erfe told Rappler in a phone interview.

(The vegetation was undisturbed, the soil was undisturbed. We were also unable to find slugs. Our conclusion – and there were no traces of blood too – is that it was a secondary crime scene.)

The PAO  team went to the crime scene on Thursday, September 7 – 3 weeks after the incident – to re-examine the area. Asked whether the crime scene could have been washed off by the rains and other weather conditions, Erfe said “trace evidence” could not be easily erased.

He noted that the wall behind Arnaiz, where the shootout supposedly happened, had no bullet marks.

If Arnaiz was indeed killed on that spot while he was in a supine position or facing up as the PNP Crime Laboratory had suggested, there would have been “bullet tracks” on the top soil, Erfe said. None was found.  (READ: Carl Arnaiz handcuffed, beaten up, killed – PAO autopsy)

Slugs that also supposedly exited Arnaiz’s body were all unaccounted for, based on the police spot report that recorded all evidence gathered from the scene.

'EVIDENCE.' A police handout photo of the evidence recovered at the crime scene. No bullet slugs were found. Photo from PNP

According to Erfe, the only evidence cops found in the crime scene – the gun in Arnaiz’s hand, and the cartridge cases he supposedly used up – could have been easily planted.

Even with such conclusion, the forensic expert noted that courts and police investigators – not PAO – would pass official judgment on whether or not the crime scene was staged by Caloocan cops. –

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Rambo Talabong

Rambo Talabong covers the House of Representatives and local governments for Rappler. Prior to this, he covered security and crime. He was named Jaime V. Ongpin Fellow in 2019 for his reporting on President Rodrigo Duterte’s war on drugs. In 2021, he was selected as a journalism fellow by the Fellowships at Auschwitz for the Study of Professional Ethics.