By Jhon Aldrin Casinas
A string of criminal charges were filed Monday against a policeman who allegedly killed 23-year-old construction worker Kim Ramos and wounded his friend Lauro Lagarde in Marikina City in October.
Lawyer Ansheline Bacudio told reporters that charges of murder, frustrated murder, and planting of evidence were filed before the Marikina City Prosecutors’ Office against Police Corporal Herjonner Soller.
Bacudio said that Kim’s father Norman Ramos and another person whom the lawyer refused to identify due to security reasons stood as complainants against Soller.
“Nagfile po kami (We filed) against kay Soller. Siya po yung tangi naming (He is our only) respondent. Nag file po kami ng (We filed charges of) frustrated murder and murder case and planting of evidence,” the lawyer said.
“Na kay fiscal na po ngayon yung kaso tapos hinihintay na lang po namin ano yung magiging aksyon nila,” she added. (The case is with the fiscal and we are awaiting their action.)
Bacudio, who helped the complainants file the case, is a member of Initiatives for Dialogue and Empowerment through Alternative Legal Services (IDEALS)—a group of lawyers that provides legal assistance to individuals and marginalized sectors.
The legal group did not furnish media with a copy of the 20-page complaint, saying there is confidential information in the document.
The lawyer said they will be presenting five to seven witnesses, including a minor. When asked for the bases of the complaint, Ramos said witnesses testified that there was no gun found in Kim’s possession when they arrived at the crime scene.
Kim’s father, who could not hold back his tears during the interview, has renewed his call for justice for his slain son.
“Sana mabigyan ng hustiya at magkaroon ng katarungan. Sana maipakulong namin iyang pulis na ‘yan. Napakabait po ng anak ko,” Ramos said. (We hope Kim gets justice and that we put the policeman in jail. My son was such a good person.)
“Sana manalo kami kasi sinungaling naman ‘yang pulis na ‘yang nakabaril. At sana magsabi siya nang katotohanan na bakit niya binaril yung anak ko sa ulo, eh tumatakbo na nga eh. Ibig sabihin hindi marunong makipag-away ang anak ko,” he added.
(We hope we win because that policeman who shot my son is a liar. And we want him to tell the truth about why he shot my son in the head when he was already running away. That means my son does not know how to fight.)
Families and supporters of Ramos, wearing white t-shirts and holding tarpaulins calling for justice, trooped to the Marikina City Hall of Justice on Monday morning to support the filing of the complaint against the cop.
Lauro Lagarde, Kim’s friend who was wounded during the alleged gun scuffle with Soller, hopes that the case will have the same verdict as the case of Kian delos Santos in Caloocan City, where three policemen were convicted of murder for the 17-year-old boy’s death in Aug. 2017.
“Sana pagbayaran niya (Soller) yung kasalanan niya,” he said. (I hope Soller pays for his crime.)
Lagarde earlier narrated that he and Kim had just finished playing basketball when a man on a motorcycle approached and told them to stop their alleged drug addiction.
Lagarde added that moments later, they again crossed paths with the motorcycle rider, later identified as Soller, along an intersection of Mt. Vernon and Gil Fernando Streets. This time Lagarde confronted the rider and asked him why he called them addicts.
Soller then allegedly pulled out a gun. Lagarde said he shoved the firearm away but was shot in the stomach; he played dead after he was shot. He claimed that Kim ran away but Soller shot him in the back of the head.
The incident took place on Oct. 5 at around 6:30 p.m, a belated police report read.
Police also allegedly seized a gun from Kim’s possession, a narrative that his family and friends have strongly contested.
Soller was assigned to the intelligence unit of the Marikina Police when the incident took place. He was relieved of his post after he was tagged with Ramos’s death.
Marikina City Mayor Marcelino Teodoro earlier called for a thorough investigation into the death of Ramos, vowing that justice will be served.