BANGAR, La Union-Two robbery suspects were gunned down when they tried to elude authorities after they were caught in the act of stealing school computers at the Rissing Elementary School in Bangar, a northern town of the province, at dawn last Thursday.
The bodies of the fatalities, clad in maroon and gray T-shirts, were still unidentified–no ID cards were found in their possession– and were brought to a funeral parlor for autopsy.
It was learned that three or more companions who were waiting for them in the school vicinity, aboard a white van with plate number PN WRF 757, also tried to elude arrest but were intercepted somewhere in a dragnet police operation in the next town of Sudipen.
Pol. Chief Insp. Rogelio Miedes, Bangar police chief, said that the two robbers entered three rooms of the school after breaking their locks by using a bolt cutter, which was recovered later along with two .38 caliber handguns and undetermined number of computer sets.
He added that he earlier deployed police personnel in different schools in the town to safeguard and also as preparation for the school year opening.
Miedes said he had received information from one of his personnel that they saw two men getting off a white van, which has earlier been reported by witnesses to be a getaway vehicle of men involved in previous robbery incidents in the province.
When Miedes and his men went to the area, they saw the school gate already opened and that some of the computers were already outside the opened classroom doors.
When the suspects emerged later, Miedes identified themselves as police officers, but the two men drew their respective .38 caliber pistols , prompting alert personnel to shoot them. The two, suffering gunshot wounds, were declared dead- on- arrival at the hospital.
Miedes said they are now investigating the true identities of the suspects, and are extracting more information from their companions, who are now detained at the police station. But, he said, that based on their appearance and height, they could be from the Cordillera region.
He added that they were also coordinating with the Land Transportation Office here and in the Cordillera Administrative Region for the identity of the owner of the vehicle used by the suspects.
The police are also looking into the possibility that the two dead men belonged to the so-called “Bolt-cutter Gang” operating province-wide and elsewhere, targeting schools. Jun Elias, William Jun Garcia and Erwin Beleo/NPN-northboundasia.com