By Jeff Damicog
The suspects in the death of youths Carl Angelo Arnaiz and Reynaldo “Kulot” de Guzman are set to file their response on Thursday (October 19) to the criminal complaints against them.
Senior assistant state prosecutor Emilio Victorio, who chairs the panel of prosecutors handling the slay case of the two youths, gave taxi driver Tomas Bagcal and Caloocan City policemen PO1 Jeffrey Perez and PO1 Ricky Arquilita only until that day to file their respective counter-affidavits.
If they fail to file, the panel of prosecutors won’t consider their defenses in the resolution it would release whether to indict them in court or not.
The panel began its preliminary investigation on October 9 over the criminal complaints filed by the parents of Arnaiz and de Guzman on September 14.
Under the complaints, all three respondents are accused of double murder under Article 248 of the Revised Penal Code (RPC).
Aside from this, the two policemen are also charged for violating the Anti-Torture Law.
Carl, a 19-year-old University of the Philippines (UP) student, and de Guzman, 14, were last seen alive together on August 18 in their neighborhood in Cainta, Rizal.
Caloocan City police claimed Arnaiz died during a shootout on August 18 when he resisted arrest and fired his handgun at chasing cops following the taxi robbery committed against Bagcal.
Almost three weeks later, de Guzman was found dead in a creek in Gapan City, Nueva Ecija on September 5 with his head wrapped in packing tape and his body bearing almost 30 stab wounds.
Bacgal claimed Arnaiz did try to rob him on August 18 along C3 Road but managed to defend himself and catch the youth with the help of bystanders.
The driver said he brought Arnaiz to the police station alive.
However, Bacgal said the policemen brought him and Arnaiz along C3 Road.
The next thing he knew he heard gunshots and learned Arnaiz was already dead.