Murder raps up vs two soldiers, CAFGU in jail officer’s slay

By Jennifer P. Rendon


Not homicide.

The Sta. Barbara Police Station in Iloilo said it would be filing a case of murder against the three suspects in the death of a jail officer who was gunned down morning of March 18, 2021 at Barangay Bolong Oeste.

Major Raymond Celoso, Sta. Barbara police chief, said the case would be slapped not only to Army Sergeant Bjourn Kirby Sanchez Esposo but also to his companions, Staff Sergeant Nilo Sorolla Jr. and Citizen’s Armed Force Geographical Unit (CAFGU) member Nilo Silao.

Sorolla and Silao were implicated despite Esposo’s “confession” that he alone shot Jail Senior Inspector Andrew Larupay.

Esposo, a member of the 12th Infantry Battalion based at Camp Carreon in Calinog, Iloilo, also insisted that his two companions had no participation in the killing.

Celoso admitted that it was his initial belief that Esposo would be charged for homicide since the killing was not premeditated.

But to the appreciation of Staff Sergeant Roger Calambro, the investigator on case, the incident could fall under murder based on the number of wounds Larupay sustained and the number of suspects.

It was gathered that Larupay suffered six gunshot wounds on the different parts of his body.

“That’s to the evaluation made by the officer-on-case. It would still be up to the appreciation of the prosecutor if the criminal charge would be sustained or lowered to homicide,” Celoso said.

Larupay, a member of the Bureau of Jail Management and Penology (BJMP) assigned in La Carlota City, Negros Occidental, was gunned down following a road rage incident.

Esposo was collared in a hot pursuit operation while Sorolla Jr., 40, of Barangay Binangkilan, Santa Barbara, and Silao, 47, of Magsaysay St., Calinog, Iloilo, voluntarily surrendered to the police to shed light on the incident.

Investigation disclosed that Larupay was driving a white sedan while the Army personnel were on board an Elf truck.

Reports claimed that the two vehicles were racing with each other from Cabatuan town which even led to a near collision.

Larupay may have been irked after the Army personnel honked his horn while they were passing Cabatuan.

When the victim reached Bangga Dama in Sta. Barbara, Larupay parked his vehicle and alighted. He then flagged down the truck with the two Army soldiers and the CAFGU member on board.

The three were on their way to the market when the incident happened.

Before Esposo could even alight, Larupay allegedly assaulted him. He allegedly thumped Esposo on the head.

The episode happened even after the three truck passengers identified themselves as Army personnel.

Esposo even surrendered his driver’s license and apologized to Larupay. But the victim’s gun tucked in his waist fell to the ground.

Esposo allegedly warned Larupay against picking it up.

But the victim ducked and picked it. Esposo said he was left with no choice but to shoot him.

He then alighted from the vehicle, picked up his driver’s license, and checked if Larupay was still alive.

When Esposo saw Larupay moving, he immediately sought cover to the truck before fleeing. His two other companions also fled.

Larupay was proclaimed dead at the scene. Eight ammunition shells were recovered from the crime scene.