Police looking for ‘John Lennon’

SURIGAO CITY (MindaNews / 9 Oct) – The police here are looking for another foreigner who was a companion of the slain Swiss national whose body was found with a stab wound on his chest in a grassy village here Tuesday morning.

But while the police are clueless about the foreigner who registered as a “John Lennon” at a hotel here when he checked in with stabbing victim Florian Mayer, the foreigner exchanged messages with this reporter via his Facebook account, saying they were robbed by armed men on a motorcycle.

Police investigators have learned that Mayer, 22, was accompanied by “John Lennon” when they checked in at Jazz Apartelle in Barangay Togbongon here on Monday.

They said John Lennon could be the key to solve the crime, noting that the two were always together.

John Lennon, however, said he is worried to report to the police at this time, saying he could not trust them.

This Caucasian, who is also a Swiss national, requested MindaNews not to reveal his name for now as he fears for his life and those of his family who are in Siargao Island.

Lennon revealed that he and Mayer left Siargao on Monday for Surigao City to get money and buy several things for the preparation of a bar that they were going to set up in the island.

He narrated that on Monday morning, they failed to wake up early so they reached Surigao around 2 to 3 p.m. Then they went to McDonald’s, then to the hotel.

He admitted to just writing “John Lennon” at the hotel’s registration form, which he usually does every time he needs to register in some commercial establishments.

From the hotel they went to CitiHardware, then Gaisano, to buy things needed for the bar.

They went back to the hotel at 5 p.m., then to McDonald’s again for dinner, then back to the hotel.

Past midnight, Mayer said they should go out for a drink. They walked to get a habalhabal (motorcycle) that would bring them to a bar. Then two guys on a motorbike stopped, and the passenger disembarked and pointed a gun at Mayer.

The man with the gun demanded that Mayer hand him his money, but Mayer refused. “The robber pointed the gun on me, I told them I don’t have money and I ran away,” he said.

He said that Mayer, who had P70,000 in cash with him, ran away, too.

“I dropped to the ground, and after 20-30 minutes I stood up and I ran again,” Lennon said.

He said he tried to look for Mayer, and even called him and sent a message on his phone, but got no answer.

“Florian joined the army in Switzerland so I think maybe he can manage in the jungle,” John Lennon said.

He was able to flag a habalhabal and went to McDonald’s and called her girlfriend in Siargao.

But until the next day, he still did not get any response from Mayer. “I still keep on texting Florian but I got no response from him,” he added.

He said he went back to Siargao with a French national.

He said he already reported the incident to the Swiss Embassy.

John Lennon reiterated not to put his name and picture in the news.

“I am willing to say the truth but I don’t trust the police as some of them are corrupt. That’s why I don’t go to them for now,” he said.

John Lennon did not disclosed his whereabouts, but said he would surface soon provided that he will get security, along with some media people.

Apartelle attendants said “John Lennon” even failed to check out at the hotel.

Mayer died from strangulation and a lone stab wound that pierced through his heart, according to the autopsy conducted by Dr. Alex Uy of the Philippine National Police’s (PNP) Regional Crime Laboratory.

Chief Insp. Miraflor Tiu, of the Scene of the Crime Operatives (Soco), said Mayer also sustained laceration on his right leg and on his head, as well as bruises on his back.

Robbery could not be ruled out yet even if Mayer’s jewelries – gold necklace and silver bracelet – and wallet containing several credit cards were still in his possession, Tiu said. Found in Mayer’s rented room were his personal belongings and a gray Eastpak backpack containing his personal things.

Tiu said that Mayer may have already been dead when his body was dumped at the grassy area near a rice field.

Mayer’s remains now lie in state at the Nilo Funeral Services in Kilometer 3, Barangay Luna.

Meanwhile, police from General Luna town in Siargao said they are also looking for “John Lennon.”

“If he is a witness to the crime then he should report to the police what had happened. It seems he is hiding now,” said Insp. Jonathan Meru, police station chief in General Luna.

Meru said that John Lennon is considered a suspect now, “so he should come out to clear his name.”

Police are asking those who have information about Mayer’s killing to contact them: Surigao del Norte PPO hotline, 0921-5114496; Surigao City Police Station, 0998-1787778; PO3 Cesar Johans C. Castillo, 0928-3146599, PRO 13 hotline, 342-1367 and 09084544548.