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PNP: Cop who shot army vet only made ‘judgment call’

Shooting the retired military personnel, which resulted in his death, was a "judgment call" that Police Master Sergeant Daniel Florendo had to make given the situation, the Philippine National Police (PNP) said.

Florendo shot Winston Ragos in Barangay Pasong Putik, Quezon City after the victim allegedly tried to pull out a weapon.

"Much as we do not want to hastily pass judgment and allow investigators the freehand to look into all angles, we can only presume regularity in the actions of the PNP personnel nvolved while performing their duty," PNP spokesperson Police Brigadier General Bernard Banac said in a statement.

"P/MSgt Florendo was the only person in the best position to make that judgment call, better than any observer, viewer, and opinionated analyst with 20/20 hindsight," Banac added.

Florendo was reportedly the duty supervisor of four police trainees undergoing on-the-job training at a quarantine control point in Barangay Pasong Putik.

"Had he erred in his judgment, he could possibly be the cadaver in the body bag instead. If that happened then he would have failed in performing his duty to enforce the law," he added.

Banac said that the victim had also repeatedly defied the verbal commands given by authorities to yield and made "provocative and threatening moves, as well as the use of firearms and application of deadly force."

According to the spokesman, a "full-dress investigation is underway" and that the case has been turned over to the Criminal Investigation and Detection Unit of the Quezon City Police District.

Florendo has surrendered to authorities and yielded his service firearm.

"At any rate, the investigation will not limit its probe on scenes that were captured in the video clips only. All angles will be looked into and corroborated by conclusive forensic evidence," Banac said.

Banac also urged the public to refrain from mishandling video evidence, saying that this is "tantamount to obstruction of justice."

He also requested the public to "allow the process of investigation to proceed sans any external influence of opinionated hysteria, subjective bias, and anti-police sentiment." —Joahna Lei Casilao/LDF, GMA News