Armed men ransack Caraga cop’s home then shot him dead in full view of public

by Ben Serrano

December 12, 2010

            Camp Rafael Rodriguez, Libertad, BUTUAN CITY (PNA) - Five still unidentified armed men wearing camouflage suspected to be NPA rebels others suspected the gunmen as hired assassins contracted by rich gold and wood traders chased a Caraga police officer after searching and ransacking his house after shooting him dead in full view of public at a basketball court in Barangay Marnis, Barobo, Surigao del Sur over the weekend.

            Caraga police regional information office identified the victim as PO3 Bornio Mercader, a  PNP member assigned at Dinagat Islands Provincial Police Office in San Jose, Dinagat Islands province but a resident of Barangay Mamis, Barobo, Surigao del Sur. Mercader at the time of the shooting incident was in Barobo not in Dinagat. 

It was not explained why PO3 Mercader was in Barobo town if he was assigned in Dinagat Islands some 200 kilometers away and five hours motorboat ride from Dinagat Islands. 

            Initial police investigation result showed that PO3 Mercader was chased by five armed men wearing camouflage and upon reaching basketball court, the suspects shot the victim several times in front view of stunned public.

            Surprisingly, despite many gunshot wounds, the victim policeman still managed to run few meters and jumped into the bridge near basketball court. Later, he was found dead by his brother Romeo Mercader, floating at the river beneath the bridge where he ran after he was fired upon several times and chased.

            It was learned that the gunmen searched the home of Mercader before the chasing incident as if looking for something. 

Police said the gunmen took away one (1) caliber 45 pistol, one (1) homemade Ingram machine pistol, a key of an Isuzu trooper, camouflage green field service uniform and unknown amount of cash money.

            SOCO team conducted scene of the crime operation and recovered three (3) shells of M14 rifle and six (6) shells of M16 rifle.

            After the incident, the police report claimed PNP operatives from 1st Regional Public Safety Company based in Cutlog, Barobo, Surigao del Sur conducted hot pursuit operations while PNP personnel of Barobo Municipal Police Station conducted investigation.

            It was  not explained also why it took sometime for the police operatives to respond since the incident of the crime is near camp of the 1stRegional Public Safety Company in Barangay Cutlog of same town.

          Barobo town is 83 kilometers away from Butuan City, Caraga region’s capital. (PNA/Ben Serrano)