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By Francis Allan L. Angelo


THE Police Regional Office (PRO-6) has ordered a manhunt against an Army soldier from Tigbauan, Iloilo who shot three of his superiors at the Army headquarters in Fort Bonifacio Wednesday evening.


Chief Supt. Isagani Cuevas, PRO-6 director, said he ordered the Iloilo Provincial Police Office to watch out for Army Sgt. Elias Tial should he return home to Brgy. Bagacay, Tigbauan to attend his father’s funeral.


Tial, a member of the Army’s 12th Special Forces Company shot dead Capt. Dionilo Aragon Jr., 30, Master Sgt. Eliseo de la Cruz, 46, and 1st Lt. Gerald Fuentes, 31 Wednesday evening at Fort Bonifacio in Taguig City.


Fuentes is a native of Kabankalan City, Negros Occidental while Aragon hailed from Agusan del Sur. De la Cruz is from Davao del Norte.


De la Cruz was the intelligence officer and first sergeant while Aragon was the executive officer of the Army’s 12th Special Forces Company.


The unit’s commanding officer, Capt. Benito Ramos, 31, was also wounded in the attack and remains in critical condition at the Makati Medical Center.


Tial left after the carnage leaving behind the M16 Armalite rifle he used.


Reports from the Army said Tial had been asking his superiors to allow him to go on a leave of absence to attend his father’s burial March 4 in Tigbauan. His request was granted but it was later recalled.


The shooting broke out 9:55 pm Wednesday after Tial was issued an Armalite from the supply room for his use in sentinel duty.


On his way to his post, Tial saw the officers gathered inside Barracks 3 of the Army’s Transient Quarters. He then opened fire while uttering the words “You don’t know how to treat a soldier in need.”


Investigators recovered six empty shells and two live 5.56 mm bullets at the crime scene.


Cuevas said the police must immediately arrest Tial should he show up at the funeral or any part of Western Visayas.


“Our police units, particularly the Tigbauan police station, should be on alert,” the PRO-6 chief said.


Tial’s wife Mary Jane said in several radio interviews that they have no contact with her husband nor do they know his whereabouts.

May 2020

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