Village bullies’ shot by riding-in-tandem suspects

DUMAGUETE CITY – Police investigators are strongly considering personal vendetta as the possible motive in the shooting of a father and his son, who are known to be the alleged village bullies (astig or siga) and for their alleged involvement in many robbery incidents in Zamboanguita, Negros Oriental.

Chief Insp. Ruben Verbo, Jr., Zamboanguita police chief, said in an interview Thursday, that the father, Oscar Calihan, is fighting for his life at the provincial hospital in Dumaguete City, while his son, Marte Calihan, was declared dead on arrival at the same hospital.

“Mga siga man gud ni sila kuno sa ilang barangay ug gani, ang amahan gikan pod ni siya nga na preso (they are alleged bullies in their barangay and in fact, the father was previously incarcerated),” Verbo said.

The Calihans, who hail from the hinterland village of Calango in Zamboanguita, were shot around 2 p.m. Tuesday in the town’s poblacion area by four unidentified suspects riding in two motorcycles.

According to the police chief, the suspects were wearing bonnets (beanies) to cover their faces.

He said that the Calihans had just departed from the police station after securing police clearances when the suspects fired at them while they were walking along Arellano Street headed towards the national highway.

The police recovered five empty shells of caliber .45, three empty shells of caliber 9mm and one deformed slug of unknown caliber.

Verbo said they are also looking at the possible alliance of the suspects to an armed group as the Calihan patriarch was reportedly recruiting young men to join them.

He declined to comment on the possibility of a “private armed group” being formed but acknowledged that the Calihans were allegedly linked to a politician. Mary Judaline Partlow/