Soldier kills teacher during class in Bulacan grade school

Sofia Tomacruz

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Soldier kills teacher during class in Bulacan grade school
The Department of Education says the students who witnessed the shooting incident are undergoing psychological debriefing

MANILA, Philippines – An enlisted member of the Philippine Army shot dead an elementary school teacher while she was having class at the Tambubong Elementary School in Bocaue, Bulacan on Wednesday, November 21.

The 33-year-old teacher, Melody Esber, was shot in the chest by Roberto Datwin, 40, in front of her students. She died on the spot. Datwin then shot and killed himself afterwards.

The Philippine National Police (PNP) said Datwin entered the school looking for Esber. He spoke with her then “all of a sudden” drew his .45 caliber pistol and fired at her, killing her instantly.

A 9-year-old student was also hit by a stray bullet and was rushed to a nearby hospital by another teacher. The student is now in stable condition, according to the PNP.

The Department of Education (DepEd) condemned the violence and said that students who witnessed the incident were undergoing psychological debriefing by the Bulacan School Division Office’s medical team.

The department also said: “DepEd is consistently working with law enforcement agencies and assures the public that it is strengthening the necessary measures to ensure that schools continue to be a safe learning environment for its personnel and learners.”

Police said they are investigating the incident to establish the relationship between Datwin and Esber.

In a statement Thursday, Novemebr 22, Senator Joel Villanueva condoled with Esber’s family and called on DepEd to ensure tighter security in schools. –

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Sofia Tomacruz

Sofia Tomacruz covers defense and foreign affairs. Follow her on Twitter via @sofiatomacruz.