By Lyka Manalo
CAMP MIGUEL MALVAR, Batangas City— The suspect in the rape and killing of a De La Salle college student was arrested Oriental Mindoro, Tuesday, a day before she was laid to rest.
Col. Edwin Quilates, Batangas police chief presented to media on Thursday the suspect, Jorge Arobog Benedicto, 24 who was arrested in the town of Victoria.
Benedicto, a subdivision security guard, was the lone suspect in raping and killing of 21-year-old Fidex Therese Dimaculangan Maranan, whose body was found naked and covered with a blanket in her bedroom at her residence in Miracle Heights Subdivision, Barangay Antipolo Del Norte, Lipa City.
Investigators said Maranan could have been dead for three days. The body was discovered by her cousin Romulo Maranan who decided to visit her on last Friday because she cannot be reached through her cellphone.
Quilates said among the persons of interests, only Benedicto went missing. He did not report for duty on May 15.
Benedicto was caught on the subdivision’s security camera footage while outside the guard’s barracks, walking towards the street where the Maranan lives and returning to the barracks by climbing over the steel fence of the subdivision.
Benedicto’s live-in partner, Angelica Ponce Roco, helped the police to locate the suspect who left his apartment in Barangay Sabang, Lipa on May 17 and went to his mother’s place in Mindoro.
Quilates said Benedicto told to one of his inmates what had happened between him and Maranan.
“Kinuwento niya kung anong nangyari sa isang inmate, pumasok siya dun sa bahay kasi bukas ang pintuan sa likod and he was immediately seen by the victim so inuntog niya, afterwards he raped the victim then nung nagkakamalay na dun na niya sinaksak sa leeg” Quilates said.
Quilates also added that Benedicto’s fellow security guard, Marvin Opeña, revealed that they had a drinking session on the night of May 15 inside the barracks. Benedicto even invited Opeña to go to the victim’s house and rape her. Opeña said he refused and got mad at Benedicto.
DNA samples taken from suspect specimen matched the bloodstains in the crime scene.
Maranan, an orphan, was a graduating student at De La Salle Lipa.
She was a niece of Ruben Dimaculangan, a parish priest at St. Therese Parish in Talisay, Lipa.
The priest and his siblings provide for Maranan.