By Christopher Lloyd T. Caliwan
MANILA, Dec. 29 (PNA) Three days more to go before the New Year revelry, yet the number of stray bullet victims has risen from nine to 11 in different parts of the country, Philippine National Police (PNP) spokesman Senior Supt. Wilben Mayor said Sunday.
Mayor said that as of 12 noon, three people have been wounded by stray bullets in NCR, two in Region 4A, one in Region 5, two in Region 6, two in Region 12, and one in the Cordillera region, since December 16.
He identified the victims as Michael Epe, 23 (hit in left leg); Francisco Salazar (hit in the left foot), Ginalyn Soncio, 32 (hit in the left arm), Donna Padol (hit in the nose), Roberto Mariano Jr. (hit in the right leg), Jay Abuniawan (hit in the right arm), Deo Tam-og, (hit in the leg), Rommel Geroy (hit in the left leg), Myra Medrano (hit in the leg), Jestoni Obrador (hit in the middle toe), and Ricardo Garbin (hit in the feet).
Abuniawan and Obrador were minors aged 17, and 13, respectively, Mayor said.
Mayor also said that in all 73 reported incidents, 40 people have been injured by firecrackers.
The PNP spokesman added that six also reported unauthorized discharged of firearms while 1,340 illegal firecrackers worth P760,000 were confiscated.
The PNP earlier called on the public to immediately report cases of indiscriminate firing especially as the New Year celebration draws closer.
Kung meron po kayong mga dudang mga kunwari mga nag iinuman dyan sa kalsada at may tendency magbaril please pakiusap lang po bago mangyari na sila magpapaputok ireport na natin sa pulis para macheck natin agad (If there is a group of people having a drinking session and you have a feeling that they might fire a gun, please report it immediately to the police so we can have it checked), PNP chief, Director General Alan Purisima said.
He said the public can report cases of indiscriminate firing at the nearest police station in their area, or they can also text the information at 0917-847-5757.
Purisima added that abusive police officers can also be reported to the concerned police station.
Meanwhile, Mayor encouraged the public to discreetly take a picture or much better a cellphone video of any individual who is in the act of indiscriminate firing so it could be used later as evidence. (PNA)