Rape suspect falls
to police after 11 years freedom
CHITO DELA TORRE
September 23, 2012
The police in Region 8, very
particularly under its present regional director, chief superintendent
Elmer Ragadio Soria, deserve QN’s congratulations and praises. At
about 11:30 o’clock in the morning of September 18, 2012, elements of
Regional Special Operation Group 8 led by inspector Constantino
Jabonete Jr., armed with an arrest warrant, nabbed a village chief who
had been either hiding or simply being off the hook for nearly 12
years after allegedly raping a sleeping beauty in year 2001.
Sacked was Dindo Centino
Contridas, single (but with live-in partner) 33 years old punong
barangay of Maputi in the island town of Zumarraga, Samar. The rape
suspect was having a drink in year 2001 with his would-be victim, at
Pier 2 in Catbalogan, Samar, until the latter fell asleep. The victim
found out soon that his drinking buddy molested her and so she filed a
criminal charge against him. Judge Agerico A. Avila of Regional Trial
Court Branch 29 (in Catbalogan City) issued a corresponding warrant of
arrest effectively authorizing the police to search for and get Dindo
for the crime of rape as charged in Criminal Case No. 5678.
That being enough, the
Regional Special Operations Group of Police Regional Office 8 set out
and spotted the suspect somewhere at Pier 1, Brgy. 6, Catbalogan City,
having a drinking bout with friends on September 18. Losing no time,
the RSOG spread the dragnet on Dindo at 11:30 a.m. and locked him up
behind bars at the Samar Provincial Jail. Prohibited by the court to
post no bail for his temporary liberty, Dindo, while not necessarily
enjoying his free detention, may be musing on two of several moral
lessons: pier is not ideal for drinking and then raping someone, and,
a rapist should not run for an elective post. After the rape incident,
suspect reportedly went into hiding but surfaced in 2010 and won as
punong barangay in the barangay elections.
With this development,
PCSupt Soria is rekindling hopes that persons long wanted for various
criminal acts in Samar, including those in my own hometown of Basey,
will be found and also arrested soon by the PRO8’s Regional Special
Operations Group. Soria may also want to probe into some other
continuing failures of the police in Basey, which are being monitored,
for more than 3 years now by various stakeholder groups. Let us see if
Soria can solve these local mysteries, as observers put it – which,
however, I cluster into only 1 mystery, the mystery of why the police
in Basey cannot perform accordingly.
QN does not need to
enumerate the particular instances of these failures. The general
public know that, especially those whose eyes are closely glued on the
police, some of whom are monitoring for President Noynoy Aquino,
unless the police don’t know it. Among the police items monitored,
aside from failed service of arrest warrants that date as far back as
1986 (by the way, RD Soria, can you clarify if it’s the police job to
serve ageing arrest warrants, as old as 1972, or, what exactly is the
police mandate on this matter which involves both personal and
national security?), is the daily 3 numbers betting syndicate which,
according to an old lady “usher” or bet taker, stopped last
For the moment, the Waray
public can expect high from Soria’s leadership. PCSupt Soria has
remarked on this light: “It is not enough that cases are filed against
criminal suspects. Arrest of wanted persons plays a vital role in the
performance of the PNP’s core functions. It is with this context
(that) the PRO8 ha(s) intensified the implementation of LOI Manhunt:
CHARLIE, the PNP’s campaign for the neutralization of wanted persons”.
Off tangent, I have wondered
lately if the PNP regional chief has any relation to the Soria people
in Leyte and Samar. In Tarangnan, Samar, there is a certain Roger
Carreon Soria who sometimes wins a prize for his Waray verses or gets
paid for his news items. The Soria men that I have known do fine
community service, often on voluntary basis. I hope they keep up their
good work pro bono publico.
+ + + + + + + + + +
Today, September 23, a
Sunday, is the fourth day of the 9-day novena transition leading to
the annual fiesta day which peoples in such towns as Basey, and San
Miguel in Leyte, pompously mark and celebrate in thanksgiving for
Saint Michael the Archangel, their chosen patron saint. In Basey, as a
daily routine, church bells are rung at 4:30 a.m., a “penetential
procession” is conducted in a barangay starting at 5 a.m., and a
novena mass clocks on by 6 a.m. at the parish church.
On the first day of the
novena, a Diana was held “in all the streets of Basey poblacion to
herald the beginning of the fiesta novena-masses”. The first
penitential procession went around barangay Palaypay, with Mrs. Ruth
B. Bajas, Dr. Reblaya B. Bajas, Basey vice-mayor Raul Sendic Bajas and
Atty. Argyle Karen Labanen-Bajas and son Alfonso Raoul , and Dominic
Lenin B. Bajas leading the list of sponsors for the Day 1 (Sept. 20, a
Thursday) novena-mass. Palaypay is home to the family of the late
Miguelito Colinayo Bajas, the 2012 Basey fiesta hermano mayor.
Today, the procession goes
around Mercado. After the 6 a.m. novena-mass, at exactly 8:30 a.m.,
the patronal image of St. Michael will be in procession from Brgy.
Sulod chapel to Basey District Hospital where 30 minutes later a
Eucharistic celebration will be held, followed by a vigil. From the
hospital, the image will be brought to the parish church by 4:15 p.m.
in preparation for the 5 p.m. Eucharistic celebration at that church.
At the stroke of 6 o’clock in the evening, the image will be in
procession from the church to the chapel of Brgy. Mercado, there to
remain for a vigil overnight until brought back to the church by 8:30
a.m. tomorrow (Sept. 24).
For the ever-grand fiesta
celebration in Basey, conspicuous preparations begin the hanging of
buntings (karaykay, karay-karay) on all streets in the town proper.
Last Sept.16, Tiyo Miguel Espina spent one whole day closely
supervising the installation of fiesta welcome buntings that add
further beauty to the Espina Building in Brgy. Baybay. I think his
buntings are unique. They include hanging balls of different colors.