By Aaron Recuenco
A rookie policeman who was seen slapping a passenger bus driver in a viral video uploaded in the social media was sacked from his post for conduct unbecoming of a law enforcer.
Chief Supt. Guillermo Eleazar, director of the National Capital Region Police Office (NCRPO), said he had already ordered the relief of the policeman identified as Police Officer 1 Edmar Costo pending the investigation that could lead to the filing of administrative cases.
Costo, assigned as beat patroller of the Police Community Precinct 1 of Paranaque City, was identified as the policeman who slapped a bus driver in a video apparently taken and uploaded by a passenger who witnessed the incident.
“It’s wrong. He should have not done it because it is contrary to what we swore to do which is to serve and protect the people,” said Eleazar.
Eleazar, along with Southern Police District head Chief Supt. Tomas Apolinario, confronted and reprimanded the policeman for his behavior.
Apolinario said that based on the investigation, Costo first warned the bus driver identified as Joel Mametis for causing traffic along Rozas Boulevard while picking up passengers.
“He said he was directing traffic control and cautioned the bus driven by the victim for causing traffic. He then went up to the bus to issue Traffic Citation Ticket to the victim,” said Apolinario.
“But the driver allegedly attempted to bribe the Police Officer and refused to hand over his driver’s license,” he added.
Costo said the bus driver shouted invective words at him which later resulted in a heated altercation.
He added that he felt insulted by what Mametis did, especially when he refused to give the driver’s license and attempted to bribe him instead.
“He admitted to have slapped the face of victim due to his anger,” said Eleazar.
Eleazar said that if Costo’s story is indeed true, then he should have either reprimanded and warned the bus driver of the Valisno bus or arrested him for bribery.
The NCRPO chief said Costo was already relieved from his post and reassigned to the Regional Headquarters Support Group of the NCRPO in Bicutan, Taguig City.
He added that they are now contacting Mametis so that administrative case of simple misconduct and criminal case of slight physical injury would be filed against Costo.