Man takes 86-year-old mother hostage

Police storm the house of a man who held his mother hostage in Barangay Progreso, Lapuz, Iloilo City on Wednesday. (ICPO photo)

By Jennifer P. Rendon

A man took hostage his 86-year-old mother inside their home at Barangay Progreso, Lapuz, Iloilo City on Wednesday.

The hostage drama ended with Charlie Reyes, 48, releasing his mother Marietta.

Major Shella Mae Sangrines, Iloilo City Police Office (ICPO) spokesperson, said that the event unfolded after the suspect holed up inside their home around 9:00 a.m.

Initially, the family tried to negotiate for Charlie to allow their mother to go out of their house.

When the siblings thought they could no longer handle the situation, they called the police for assistance.

Dr. Rebecca Gregorios of the Iloilo City Health Office was eventually called in to negotiate.

It was gathered that Charlie and his two siblings have been suffering from schizophrenia (not nervous breakdown as earlier reported).

Sangrines said the hostage taker has been seeking treatment from Gregorios.

Schizophrenia is considered a serious mental disorder in which people interpret reality abnormally. It may result in some combination of hallucinations, delusions, and extremely disordered thinking and behavior that impairs daily functioning, and can be disabling. People with schizophrenia require lifelong treatment.

“He’s only listening to Dr. Gregorios and no one else,” Sangrines said.

While inside their home, the suspect allegedly poked a bladed weapon at his mother and at himself.

The Iloilo City Police Office (ICPO) has also deployed members of the Special Weapons and Tactics (SWAT) team, the Iloilo City Mobile Force Company, and the Mobile Patrol Unit to the area

Members of the Iloilo City Emergency Responders (ICER) were also called in.

Sometime during the negotiation, Charlie’s 10-year-old son did try to negotiate with his father to peacefully go with the authorities.

At around 3:33 p.m., police deemed that the negotiation has failed.

The SWAT team conducted a forced entry into the hostage taker’s house at 3:45 p.m.

And after a minute, they were able to secure Charlie and his mother.

Sangrines said both suffered minor injuries.

“On the part of Charlie, it was more of self-inflicted wounds,” Sangrines said.

They were rushed to St. Paul’s Hospital, but Marietta was later referred to Western Visayas Medical Center while Charlie was taken to West Visayas State University Medical Hospital.

Initial investigation showed that Charlie went into a fit of rage after he was not given money.

It was further aggravated after he allegedly failed to take his medicine.

Last year, the SWAT team was also called to respond after Charlie suffered another bout of mental breakdown.