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In the furtherance of sworn duty, members of the PNP always thrust their lives in

the threshold of danger. But nonetheless, resort to wanton violence can never be
justified when their duty could be performed otherwise. Shooting first and think later
disposition has no place in an organization whose primary duty is to serve and protect
as peace and order is never founded on the cost of human life.

This pertains to administrative summary proceedings initiated by PSSUPT


DIONARDO CARLOS, Officer-in-Charge of Negros Oriental Police Provincial Office
against PO3 Carl Marc Logronio Jopillo, presently assigned with Guihulngan City Police
Station, Guihulngan City, Negros Oriental for Grave Misconduct that stemmed from
alleged Homicide penalized pursuant to Section 2 (C) (3) (r), Rule 21 of NAPOLCOM
Memo Circular No. 2007-001, which reads: “commit any act or omission that constitutes
a crime punishable under the Revise Penal Code.”

The Pre-Charge Evaluation Report1 would show that on June 5, 2015 at about
4:45 in the afternoon, respondent PO3 Carl Marc L. Jopillo, member of Guihulngan City
Police Station, personally turned over his issued firearm Glock 17 with serial number
PNP17008 with one (1) empty magazine to PINSP RONNIE ACAR, Deputy Chief of
Police of Guihulngan City Police Station. He also turned over one (1) .9 mm
Parabellum pistol bearing serial number B30163 with one (1) magazine and one (1) live
ammunition and alleged that he took it from the possession and control of Reynaldo
Olila @ Rey, husband of his sister-in-law. Subject PNCO claimed that while performing
his duty as Intelligence PNCO in Pisok, Poblacion, Guihulngan, Negros Oriental, on the
drug personalities in the area, Rey, believed to be under the influence of liquor, arrived.
The former then advised the latter to calm down. However, he (Rey) drew his firearm,
instead. Accordingly, subject PNCO was able to disarm him. When he was about to
proceed to the police station to check whether the said firearm has proper
documentation, allegedly Rey grabbed the service firearm of PO3 Jopillo and in the
process, respondent shot Rey as an act of self-defense, which resulted to his death.

The investigation further disclosed that respondent together with Andrew Perez,
Jr., Willoh Perez, Martel Perez, Rey Olila @ Rey and PO3 Jopillo were having a
drinking spree on June 5, 2015 at around 1:00 in the afternoon. While their
conversation was going on, Rey approached a certain JO1 Val Guzman, who cocked
his firearm in front of Andrew Perez on June 4, 2015. When Rey returned with the
group, PO3 Jopiilo uttered in vernacular to quote: “Kani gud untang civilian dili padal-on
ug pusil, pulis ra unta, bisan ikaw pa part” while pointing his finger to Rey. Said
utterances can be translated in this wise: “If possible, these civilians should not be
allowed to carry firearm, only the police, even you partner.” After hearing those words,
Rey got angry and they (Rey and PO3 Jopillo) drew their respective firearms but was
subsequently pacified and disarmed by the group.

At around 4:45 in the afternoon on same date, while Andrew Perez and Rey were
heading towards their home, PO3 Jopillo met them and fired five (5) warning shots and
then pointed his firearm at Rey. However, Rey walked towards subject PNCO and said
“Sige, sige.” At about a fathom away, the latter shot the former, which resulted to his
death. It was also disclosed that herein respondent shot the victim several times and
had reloaded another magazine and fired the same, hitting at different parts of the
victim’s body.

Substantiating the present action against the respondent, the nominal


complainant offered as evidence the affidavits of Andrew Perez, Jr.2 and JM Magdalino
Apostol,3 who both witnessed the shooting incident; PINSP RONNIE ACAR,4 who

1
See Pre-Charge Evaluation Report from OIC, NOPPO dated 29 June 2015
2
See Affidavit of Witness executed by Andrew Legaspi Perez Jr dated June 8, 2015
3
See Affidavit of Witness executed by JM Magdalino Apostol dated June 8, 2015
4
See Affidavit of Witness executed by PI RONNIE M ACAR dated June 8, 2015
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responded and conducted the investigation and recovered at the crime scene three (3)
pieces of deformed slugs and forty one (41) pieces of empty shells of caliber .9 mm;
and Criminal Complaint for Homicide and other supporting documents.

Likewise, the medical findings5 disclosed that the cause of death of the victim
was Hypovolemia Secondary to multiple gunshot wounds at the head and body.

Respondent PO3 Jopillo, in his Counter-Affidavit,6 invoked the law on self-


defense as provided for under Article 11 of the Revised Penal Code. Thus, he claimed
that the victim (Rey) pointed his gun at him and to avoid a greater evil, subject PNCO
fired his gun at closed range. Indeed, the victim got drunk almost everyday and fired his
firearm in the air. Respondent further alleged that the victim is the bodyguard of the
Mayor of Guihulngan City and that will account for the fact that he was equipped with a
gun all the time.

In self-defense, the burden of proof rests upon the accused. His duty is to
establish self-defense by clear and convincing evidence, otherwise conviction, would
follow from his admission that he killed the victim. He must rely on the strength of his
own evidence and not on the weakness of the prosecution.7 In the instant case,
respondent failed to adduce evidence substantiating his claim of self-defense.

Under the law, unlawful aggression is an indispensable element of self-defense.


Without unlawful aggression, self-defense will not have a leg to stand on and this
justifying circumstance cannot and will not be appreciated, even if the other elements
are present.8 There is aggression in contemplation of the law only when the one
attacked faces real and immediate threat to one’s life. The peril sought to be avoided
must be imminent and actual, not just speculative.9 When respondent as claimed by
witnesses fired five (5) warning shots and pointed his firearm at the victim, however, the
latter instead of avoiding herein respondent, walked towards PO3 Jopiilo and uttered
“sige, sige”. Under the attendant circumstance, does the actuation of the victim amount
to unlawful aggression as contemplated under the law? Certainly, the answer is in
negative as there was no imminent and actual danger as Rey during that time was no
longer armed. Even granting for the sake of argument that Rey poses impending threat
during that time, does the means employed by the respondent reasonably
commensurate to the nature and the extent of the attack sought to be averted? Again,
the answer is in negative. It bears stressing to note that the nature and number of
gunshot wounds inflicted by PO3 Jopillo to the victim are constantly considered as
important indicia of self-defense. The act of firing several times at already crippled
victim clearly demonstrates the clear intent of subject PNCO to bring forth death on
Rey. The medical findings showing multiple gunshot wounds at the head and body of
the victim and the recovery of three (3) pieces of deformed slugs and forty one (41)
pieces of fired cartridges of caliber .9 mm. at the crime scene speak eloquently against
the self-serving claim of self-defense.

Significantly, instead of homicide, Hon. Presiding Judge Mario Trinidad of RTC


Branch 64 of Guihulngan, Negros Oriental finds probable cause to support the issuance
of Warrant of Arrest for Murder.10

All told, the prosecution has ably established the guilt of respondent PNCO by
substantial evidence, i.e., such relevant evidence as a reasonable mind might accept as

5
See Post-Mortem Report of Mary Rose Sancelan, MD., Acting City Health Officer as Exhibit K of the Prosecution
6
See Counter-Affidavit of PO3 Carl Marc Jopillo dated 7 September 2015
7
People v. Clemente, G.R. No. L-23463
8
Palaganas v. People, G.R. No. 165483, September 12, 2006, 501 SCRA 533, 552
9
People v. Dagani, G.R. No. 153875, August 16, 2006, 499 SCRA 64, 74
10
Order dated July 1, 2015 issued by Hon. Mario Trinidad, Presiding Judge of RTC Branch 64, Guihulngan City,
Negros Oriental
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adequate to support a conclusion, even if other minds equally reasonable might
conceivably opine otherwise.11

WHEREFORE, premises considered, and finding substantial evidence to hold


respondent PO3 Carl Marc L. Jopillo GUILTY as charged, the undersigned hereby
recommended the penalty of DISMISSAL from the PNP service owing to the
seriousness of the offense and presence of aggravating circumstances of drunkenness
and the use of service firearm in the commission of the offense.

SO RECOMMENDED.

Done this ______________________, at Police Regional Office-7, Camp Sergio


Osmeña Sr., Osmeña Blvd., Cebu City.

PSINSP ZENAIDO A SANCHEZ


Chief DOLS, RPHRDD7

11
See Esguerra v. United Philippines Lines, Inc., G.R. No. 199932, July 3, 2013, 700 SCRA 687, 698
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