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Bayan remains skeptical of PNP suspects in Ramento murder: Wants continuing investigation even if suspects arrested

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The umbrella group Bagong Alyansang Makabayan remained skeptical of the alleged suspects presented by the police in the murder of Obispo Maximo Alberto Ramento.

Bayan said human rights group Karaptan is still in the process of conducting its own independent investigation in the Ramento murder and have so far come up with an initial investigative report that may not necessarily tally with the police claims.

“There are still things that don’t add up. There were death threats against Bp. Ramento just before his murder. According to Alberto III, son of the late bishop, that the elder Ramento received information that he will die not by shooting but by stabbing,” said Bayan chair Carol Araullo, citing a report from Karapatan.

Araullo also said that there had been previous robberies in the convent Ramento was staying, one on September 11 and another on September 23. In the September 23 incident, Ramento was in the convent when the robbery took place. His wallet, DVD player and cellular phone were taken. He was unharmed in the incident.

“There have been at least two prior incidents of robberies and in one case, the bishop was not even harmed. What happened in the alleged robbery being pointed out by the police the night Ramento was murdered does not match the previous patterns of robberies in the convent,” Araullo said.

Another concern raised by the group was the murder weapon which found its way to a baranggay official before being allegedly surrendered to the police.

“We want to know how the murder weapon found its way to the police. Initial findings suggest that the knife was turned over by a baranggay official to the PNP. How did the baranggay official acquire the murder weapon? There are pieces of evidence that can lead to more clues as to the identity of the perpetrators,” she said.

“The evidence at the crime scene must tally with the alleged suspects presented by the police. The evidence must be preserved and the investigations pursued even if the PNP claims that the case is solved. There must be a thorough investigation before they can pin down the real perpetrators,” Araullo added.