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Army seeks NBI's assistance for impartial probe on Ragos case

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The Philippine Army on Friday sought the assistance of the National Bureau of Investigation in probing the fatal shooting in Quezon City which led to the death of former soldier, Corporal Winston Ragos.

Army commander Lieutenant General Gilbert Gapay wrote a letter to NBI director Attorney Eric Distor requesting for the conduct of an impartial investigation due to the supposed conflicting claims of the involved policemen and the witnesses as well as the materials available such as the video clip of the incident.

"Apparent prejudgement by police investigators moved the Army to seek help from the NBI so that justice may be served for Ragos and his family," the Army said in a press statement.

Ragos, who served the military for seven years, was diagnosed with mental disorder (PTSD). In January 2017, the soldier was given a complete disability discharge from his military service, complete with pension and other assistance.

He was fatally shot by Police Master Sergeant Daniel Florendo near a control point in Fairview last April 21 after he refused the order of the cop to return to his home amid the observance of the quarantine.

Florendo already underwent inquest proceedings for a homicide complaint.

Meanwhile, the Army said the unfortunate incident has raised awareness and concern on the plight of soldiers suffering from mental health disorders incurred during their military service.

Gapay ordered a review on the existing policies and programs dealing with combat stress, trauma risk management and other health concerns related to mental health of the troops.

“What happened to Corporal Ragos was an unfortunate, but avoidable event. Let his death serve as an awakening on the plight of other soldiers who are being plagued by the traumas of war," Gapay said.

The Army chief also vowed assistance to the grieving family of Ragos. —LDF, GMA News

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