MANILA — Commission on Human Rights (CHR) chairperson Chito Gascon has expressed sadness over the death of a 17-year-old senior high school student in Caloocan City who was reportedly slain by policemen during an anti-narcotics operation on Wednesday night.
“Malungkot na kaganapan na ang ating mga kabataan ay nagiging bahagi sa rising death toll (It is sad that our youth are part of the rising death toll),” Gascon told the Philippine News Agency (PNA) after a press conference at the CHR office Friday afternoon.
Kian Loyd delos Santos was reportedly gunned down by policemen during an “Oplan Galugad” operation in Caloocan.
According to authorities, the boy took off at the sight of the policemen, and tried to resist and fight back with a gun, prompting the police officers to shoot him.
However, witness accounts and footage from a security camera showed two policemen dragging Kian before he was found dead.
Witnesses said the boy was begging the officers to let him go as he was being forced to reveal drug suppliers. They said the boy was given a gun and was instructed to fire it and run away, possibly to corroborate claims he resisted arrest.
”Malungkot itong kay Kian. Nangarap pala siyang maging police officer. Mataas ang pagtingin sa kapulisan (Kian’s case is sad. He dreamt of becoming a police officer. He looked up to the police),” Gascon lamented.
“Kung paniniwalaan natin yung CCTV (footage), hindi siya kailangan mapatay dahil mayroong eksenang lumabas sa CCTV, hawak na siya ng pulis. Tapos ang kasunod na eksena ay ito, napaslang siya (If we are to believe the CCTV footage, he did not have to end up dead. There was a scene in the CCTV where he was held by the police. Then in the next scene, he was already dead),” he added.
Gascon said the CHR is investigating Kian’s case, along with other deaths from police operations in Bulacan, Manila, Quezon City, Caloocan, Malabon, Navotas, and Valenzuela this week. PNA-northboundasia.com