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Nephew Sherwin and the Shoot-Out at Savannah

Our niece Shaina had arrived home around 6 pm without her younger, 13-year-old brother,Sherwin. I heard my asawa speaking to someone on the phone minutes earlier and was extremely glad it wasn’t me on the receiving end. Our niece and nephew that live with us go to the same high school and have specific instructions from my spouse to travel home in the jeepney together.  Vehicular traffic was backed up in front of our subdivision gate in Savannah, Pavia, Iloilo. A robbery had occurred and one of the thieves had been killed in a shootout right outside our main gate. DSC

According to a report in The Daily Guardian, police in Pavia and San Miguel, Iloilo,  foiled a robbery attempt in the town, killing one of the suspects in a shootout late Friday afternoon.

Our nephew, Sherwin, had decided he didn’t want to wait for his sister to get out of class so he took a jeepney to Mandurriao plaza where he would wait for Shaina at the jeepney stop. Problem is, when Shaina arrived at the stop, Sherwin wasn’t there.

My asawa had made five calls to our nephew that went unanswered. She was livid with anger when she finally reached him. Jeepney traffic had backed up due to the robbery and the police pursuit of the thieves. He had just hopped on a jeepney. Why he didn’t get on one before his sister, who had arrived at Mandurriao later, is not clear. But one thing was certain. Our nephew was in for some big trouble in little Savannah when he arrived home.

It was already dark. Mandurriao Plaza is not the best place for a 13-year-old kid to hang out. Lots of “addicts” hang out there, according to my asawa. Shabu, meth, is a major drug problem in this area.DSC

The Daily Guardian reports that the Pavia PNP, Philippine National Police,  led by S/Insp. Dante Dumaguing responded to calls for assistance from employees of King’s Oil office at Brgy. Hibao-an, Pavia 4:50pm yesterday. King’s Oil is near our subdivision.

Ronald Fito, security guard of King’s Oil, said the six suspects pretended to buy cooking oil before declaring the heist.

Two suspects neutralized the security guard while the other four who were armed with handguns and a grenade carted away more or less P200,000 cash.

The suspects then fled towards San Miguel town onboard a Clint taxi unit driven by Raymond Ngirngir, a taxi group leader, who passed by the area.

The police caught up with the suspects and cornered them near the main entrance of Savannah Subdivision. A shootout ensued while one of the suspects tried to lob a grenade but the police quickly shot him dead before he could release it.

Police bomb experts extracted the grenade and wrapped it with adhesive tape to prevent it from exploding.

The remaining five suspects then surrendered when they realized that they were surrounded by authorities.

Initial reports from Pavia police identified the arrested suspects as Elmer Leco-an of Brgy. San Matias, Dingle; Joebert Gumban of Brgy. Ginalinan Nuevo, Dingle; Edwin Anorico of Brgy. Lincud, Dingle; Joemarie Gine of Brgy. Tuburan, Pototan; and Reynold Eny of Brgy. Agcuyawan Pulo, Barotac Nuevo.

The dead suspect was identified as a certain Sonny Daw-ang. Another suspect who was caught in a follow up operation remains unidentified.

Ngirngir, who drove the taxi used by the suspects in fleeing, was also arrested but he denied being part of the robbery group.

The cabbie said he was passing through Hibao-an area when the suspects who were casually walking along the highway flagged him down.

Ngirngir said the suspects have just boarded his taxi when a pickup filled with police officers blocked their path.

The taxi driver said he was unaware that his passengers were robbers.

Dumaguing said they have been on alert after receiving reports that a robbery group will operate in Pavia.

Aside from the hand grenade, investigators recovered from the suspects P24,400 cash, a caliber .9mm pistol, and two caliber .38 revolvers.

We initially thought the robbery had occurred outside our subdivision’s main gate. Traffic was backed up for miles. Our nephew Sherwin finally arrived home after 6:30 pm, over an hour late. His tita (aunt), The Sainted Patient Wife, ripped into him. He has extra chores this weekend and has television privileges taken from him. My asawa played the “bad cop.”

I walked into Sherwin’s room and took on the role of “good cop.”

“Sherwin, I hope you listen to ‘Tita.” You don’t have to be afraid of me, but you DO have to be afraid of ‘Tita.’ You never leave the school without your sister again, OK?” I gently said. With his head lowered he answered in the affirmative. Message received. He did not want to suffer the wrath of his “Tita Daday” again.

The family sat down for a quiet dinner. The crisis was over. The traffic jam from the  Savannah Shoot-Out had cleared out by the time our niece April arrived home from work at SM City about an hour after Sherwin.  All was peaceful again in our subdivision as I prepared to watch the season premiere of Glee 4. I miss Finn, Puck and Santana (pictured below), but life goes on.santana

(Photo Source: popcultureplaypen.com)

10 thoughts on “Nephew Sherwin and the Shoot-Out at Savannah

  1. Dave,
    I see no kanos involved in the robbery lol. They don’t fool around using a grenade. I can imagine the damage it could have caused. And what happened to the rest of the money. Glad you see you took it easy on the boy. He already received the wrath of the asawa. Have a nice day

    • PapaDuck, that’s not the first time I’ve heard of grenades being used in robberies here. Some of the gangs carry some heavy artillery.

      My nephew already has his TV privileges back. He’ll be fine. The asawa is not angry with him anymore. 😛

    • The Philippines has had an armed Communist insurgency for at least the past four decades, Gary. There is a strong NPA presence on our island. The NPA was also quite active at one time on my asawa’s home province of Guimaras.

  2. This is a pretty standard event, I live in Capiz Province last week the NPA killed a army trooper in a fire fight in Tapaz, a Brgy Capitan was killed in the L300 station in Roxas by for hire gunman, and DyOW Bombo Radyo station was sprayed with gun fire from a motorcycle.

    Just another week in the Philippines

    Tom

    • I saw that report about the radio station, Tom. My asawa informs me that they are very outspoken against corrupt officials.The Philippines remains the second deadliest country in the world for journalists in 2011, the New York-based Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) next only to Iraq, an international media watchdog group reported in February 2012.

      In a report posted on its website, the New York-based Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) noted that at least 72 journalists were killed in the Philippines for their work since 1992.

      Keep safe, Tom. I’ve heard numerous reports of NPA activity in your area.

  3. Dave, I am glad that you are not a journalist! I will be on vacation with my beautiful asawa in her home town of Zamboanga City next January, this article reminds me that I better paying attention to current events in that region. It was my plan to stay on the Davao/ CDO side of Mindanao, but along came the beautiful nurse and out the window went that plan. This will be my first trip to Zamboanga, I met my wife when she was in collage living with her uncle in Manila. Oh well, I will stay close to the in-laws and trust they know where we can go and can not go.

    • Not too worry, Lee. President Aquino has promised that Americans in the Philippines are safe despite the recent uproar over the YouTube film that has triggered deadly protests at US Embassies across the globe. Philippine Coast Guard in three rubber boats patrol the Manila Bay area near our Embassy. Deputy presidential spokesperson Abigail Valte said Americans in the Philippines should not fear Filipino Muslims and there is no need for them to leave their diplomatic post in Manila.

      “The envoys and the US Embassy personnel here in the Philippines do not need to flee because our Muslim community has always conducted themselves with goodwill and sobriety,” Valte said in her weekly radio interview over state-run dzRB (source: SunStar Manila)

      Have a safe trip, Lee, and have a great vacation.

  4. Hi Dave yes that may have been political revenge with the radio station but also last week a Fish Vendor was shot dead in Pontevedra town, also another person was found cut in half and hung on a barb wire fence just out side of Pontevedra still yet unidentified.

    On Saturday morning a beer company had an event on Roxas Beach the crowd was sprayed with gunfire and a 15 year old girl was killed these are just some of the killings that get reported most never do.

    The NPA is not much of a worry it is the locals that get drunk and are bent on killing each other over a grudge or robbing and killing some one for a quick Piso

    I have lived here 12 years and the crime rate has increased every year and this is not Zanbonga it is supposed to be one of the safest areas in the Philippines

    Tom

    • Sorry to hear about the violence in your area, Tom, very sad. I have no doubt that many of the violent incidents are not reported. At 12 years you’re an expat veteran. I’ve heard similar stories about grudge killings in our area, also. “Saving face” is an Asian concept also practiced in the Philippines, as you well know, and it’s not that difficult to piss someone off. I try not, too, but do manage to irritate my asawa occasionally.

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