GENERAL SANTOS CITY (MindaNews/23 Feb) — South Cotabato Gov. Daisy Avance-Fuentes has ordered a province-wide manhunt against a carnapping suspect who escaped from the South Cotabato Regional Detention Center or provincial jail in Koronadal City early Monday.
Fuentes said she has dispatched a team of provincial jail guards to locate and recapture Andy Evangelista, who escaped from the local government-run facility at about 4:30 a.m. Monday.
Citing initial reports from jail personnel, she said Evangelista, who hails from Norala town, was able to escape by sawing off the iron bars of his cell’s window.
“Our jail guards are now tracking him down and we have alerted our police authorities to assist the manhunt,” she said.
The governor said jail officials have coordinated with the Norala municipal police station and his relatives in the area to assist in the re-arrest of Evangelista.
Fuentes said she ordered provincial jail officials to conduct a deeper investigation into the incident and to find out how the escapee got hold of the saw that he used for the escape.
She also sought for a review of the provincial jail’s security measures in the wake of the ongoing structural developments within the jail compound, especially the construction of its Alternative Learning Systems (ALS) building.
Fuentes said there’s a possibility that the suspect got the saw at the construction site or area.
Meantime, the governor said they are studying a proposal for the allocation of bounties or reward money for several provincial jail escapees who remain at-large.
She said the move is aimed to hasten the recapture of the jail escapees, especially those who were involved in major cases.
In November last year, a murder suspect identified as Kayong Dasan slipped past provincial jail guards while assisting them in gathering firewood in a remote village in Banga town.
The escapee, who was one of the jail’s trustees-inmates, has remained at-large and subject of an ongoing manhunt.
Another inmate, identified as Ramund Nerpiol, escaped from his escort in December while receiving treatment at the South Cotabato Provincial Hospital.
But Nerpiol, who is facing frustrated murder charges, was recaptured a day later by jail personnel at his home village of Lambingi in Banga town. (MindaNews)