By Leslie Ann Aquino
Check their shoes.
This was the tip given by Commission on Elections Spokesman James Jimenez to the public on how to check if the individual manning the checkpoint is merely pretending to be a legitimate police officer.
He said checkpoints must be manned by police personnel that are in complete proper uniform, including foot wear.
“Sometimes, there are people who are pretending to be legtimate police officers,” Jimenez said.
“And sometimes, people who are pretending to be legitimate police officers forget and wear rubber shoes or slippers. So, as a tip, check their feet,” he added.
To note, the Election Period for the May 13 midterm polls started Sunday which is also the start of the gun ban.
And with the gun ban in effect, COMELEC Checkpoints are being established nationwide.
For this reason, Jimenez issued the following reminders on Comelec checkpoints:
– A Comelec checkpoint must be located in a well-lit area, and manned by properly uniformed personnel of the PNP or AFP.
-The checkpoint must be identified by a prominent sign that clearly indicates the name and contact information of the COMELEC officer in charge of the area, as well as the name and contact information of the law enforcement officer in charge of the checkpoint.
-As to the actual checking, the”plain view doctrine” is in effect.
Jimenez said this means that the police can shine light into the car but the motorists will not be under any obligation to open anything like the glove compartment.
And if something in plain view arouses reasonable suspicion, he said that will only be the time that the police can do something other than look.
“If you are to volunteer to open you glove compartment or the trunk of your car, that is your call,” said Jimenez.