Slain village chair’s wife insists husband killed by raiding team

The wife of slain Barangay Captain Antonio Guatno denied reports that her husband shot it out with the arresting police officers who served the arrest warrant inside their house in Calinan District on Saturday.

In a post of her wife in a social media account, Lenlen Caminade Guatno narrated the incident before her husband was shot. Her post was addressed to all the residents of Davao City.

She said that they were roused by gunshots around 4 to 5 a.m. They immediately got up to check because they thought the Davao Light and Power Company transformer exploded.

Guatno reportedly turned on the lights and shouted at the men outside to identify themselves.

They then heard police officers ordering them to get down. They obliged.

“When I looked up there were already armed men inside our house pointing guns at us,” she said. “My husband told me to get back inside the room … and I saw them drag my husband toward the kitchen.”

She could no longer see what happened because her husband and some of the officers were blocked by the wall. She then heard five gunshots.

Lenlen said that the police then told her and her kid to crawl out of the house.

She said that their child saw the barangay official lying down on the floor and screamed, “They killled papa, ma!” The child started to get up but was handcuffed instead.

Lenlen reportedly demanded that the officers hand the search warrant only to be told that the document was in the possession of their colleague. “It should not be like that, you should serve the warrant before you enter the house,” she said.

One of the officers later arrived to show her the warrant but she refused to accept it because the police already shot her husband dead. She reportedly told the police that she will receive the warrant with a note that indicated that the document was served after they shot her husband.

The police then waved her off and told them to get out of the house.

She said that they had no idea what the police were doing inside the house. They also told her that they will bring her husband to the hospital. She begged to come but was refused.

“Now, they allowed me to go inside the room and I checked the money to be spent for the election campaign but it was already missing,” she said.

The barangay official’s wife said that he wanted to clear the air about the alleged shootout, which didn’t happen.

“There’s no armed confrontation. Will you still fight when there were too many guns pointed at you?” she said, adding that the officers also destroyed their front door in gaining entry to the house.

She further asked for justice in the killing of her husband during the operation.

According to the PRO XI’s report, a search team led by the Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG)-Davao City Field Unit, backed by the CIDG-Regional Field Unit XI, the Regional Intelligence Unit and the Regional Mobile Force Battalion, and Calinan Police Precinct, went to Guatno’s house to implement a search warrant.

Reportedly, the search warrant was issued because Guatno allegedly violated Republic Act No. 10591, or the Philippine Firearms Law. However, the barangay official reportedly drew his pistol and pointed it at the raiding team.

Guatno was rushed to Isaac T. Robillo Memorial Hospital for medical attention, but was declared dead on arrival by the attending physician.

The team allegedly recovered a caliber .45 pistol (serial number 361855 with an inserted magazine loaded with three live ammunition) and a caliber 9mm pistol (serial number T0620 with an inserted magazine loaded with 14 live ammunition) from the official’s house.

The reports said the search was conducted in an orderly manner as witnessed by the representatives from the barangay, the Department of Justice, and the media.
Guatno, said to be a former army sergeant, was the barangay captain who finished the six-month drug rehabilitation program, Tabangan Atong Reformists Aron Naay Asenso (Tara Na)-CBRAP, last January.

Tara Na-CBRAP is Davao City’s wellness program for drug reformists.