DAVAO CITY(MindaNews / 5 June)— Police authorities here have expressed concern that the high incidence of rape cases in the city—31 reported from January to April this year—is “alarming,” and has remained to be the highest among the “eight focus crimes” in the city.
Based on data released by the Davao City Police Office (DCPO), the rape cases account for 33 percent of the 94 reported crimes for the first four months of the year.
But Maj. Catherine dela Rey, DCPO spokesperson, pointed out that the rape cases this year went down from the 57 recorded incidents during the same period of last year.
For the other “focus crimes,” the police reported 24 cases of theft, 18 murder, 10 robbery, 4 homicide, 4 physical injury, 2 motorcycle theft, and 1 car theft from January to April.
Dela Rey said that authorities are doing all they can to prevent similar incidents from happening again and give justice to the victims and their families.
She said law enforcers have commenced implementation of “Oplan Kilos” (Kababainhan/Kalalakin-an/Kabatan-unan Igiya Laban sa Pagpanlugos), a campaign seeking to “intensify police and community efforts in the strategic measures in combating rape and other sexual abuse against women and children.”
“This is alarming because it remains to be the highest. That is why we are doing the best we can to prevent this and at the same time resolve those cases,” Dela Rey added.
Asked if police already have suspects behind the rape-slay of 28-year-old Architect Vlance Marie L. Bragas last May 17, Dela Rey said there is still “no update.”
Bragas was found dead shortly after going missing. Her remains were covered in dried banana leaves in a plantation in Barangay Dacudao in Calinan.
CCTV footage showed Bragas was seen boarding a yellow tricycle at Crossing Fausta, Calinan District before the incident.
Former President Rodrigo Duterte has criticized Davao police for still not having resolved the Bragas case, telling them to “hang yourselves in shame” if they could not find the suspects. “I doubled your salaries during my time [as President], and yet this is all you could give us?” he said.
Dela Rey said individuals who can help authorities identify the suspects would receive the cash reward of P1 million offered by Davao City First District Rep. Paolo “Pulong” Duterte. (Antonio L. Colina IV / MindaNews)