Press Release
September 6, 2016


Sen. Grace Poe asked Philippine National Police Chief Ronald "Bato" Dela Rosa to conduct an investigation into the circumstances that led to the killing of a four-year-old girl during a police drug bust in Guihulngan, Negros Oriental last August 30.

The senator cited Section 39 of Republic Act 8551 or the PNP Reform and Reorganization Act of 1998 which provides that the Internal Affairs Service of the Philippine National Police (PNP-IAS) shall conduct, motu proprio, automatic investigation of incidents where death, serious physical injury or any violation of human rights occurred in the conduct of a police operation.

"The PNP-IAS must ensure that scalawags in the police service are held accountable, more so in cases where children and minors are senselessly caught in the crossfire. Their vulnerability must not be trampled upon," said Poe, who has pressed for the appointment of a civilian IAS head.

Althea Fhem Barbon and her father, 31-year old Aldrick died after they were shot by policemen on Larena Street in Barangay Poblacion, a few meters away from their house. Aldrick, who was suspected of selling shabu, died instantly while Althea was taken to a hospital in the capital city of Dumaguete where she died two days later.

"The situation where innocent children become victims of the drug war is deplorable and must be addressed without delay," Poe stressed.

Poe also followed up on the investigation into the death of five-year-old Danica Mae Garcia, a resident of Dagupan City, Pangasinan, who was earlier killed by a bullet intended for her grandfather.

While Poe has expressed full support to the government's anti-drug campaign, she said, "The prime duty of the police force is to serve and protect the people. The protection of life is one of the essentials for the enjoyment of the blessings of democracy."

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