By Che Palicte and Jha Aparecio

CRIME SCENE. A yellow police tape cordoned the place where a soldier ran amok and shot two persons dead and injured two others in Magpet, Cotabato on New Year’s Eve, Dec. 31, 2023. The suspect, who was apparently drunk, is identified as Sgt. Alin Anthony Jimenez, who is affiliated with the 10th Civil-Military Operations Battalion. (Photo courtesy of 97.5 Brigada News FM-Kidapawan)

DAVAO CITY – A drunk soldier ran amok and shot dead two persons while injuring two others in Magpet town, North Cotabato on New Year’s Eve, authorities said Tuesday.

In a statement, the Army’s 10th Infantry Division (ID) said the suspect, Sgt. Alin Anthony Jimenez, is affiliated with the Army’s 10th Civil-Military Operations Battalion (10CMOBn).

The 10CMOBn operates under the operational control (OPCON) of the Joint Task Force Haribon.

On Monday, the 10CMOBn commander surrendered Jimenez, of Barangay Patag, Cagayan de Oro City, to the Magpet police.

Police report said Jimenez, who was apparently drunk, was involved in an altercation with a person who checked him because he was driving a motorcycle without a license plate at Crossing Matas in Magpet.

Jimenez then left and came back with a pistol and opened fire on people standing near a burger store, killing Eljey Repolidon on the spot.

Another victim, Jesson Torres, later died in the hospital, while others were wounded.

Cases of double murder and double frustrated murder are readied against Jimenez.

“As a result, any administrative case or complaint against the personnel mentioned above cannot be addressed by the 10ID. Nevertheless, the 10ID remains resolute in its commitment to remind all our organic and OPCON personnel to uphold the highest standards of discipline in all their endeavors,” the 10ID said.

NPA couple yields in Bukidnon

Meanwhile, in Bukidnon province, a rebel couple and another injured combatant belonging to the communist New People’s Army (NPA) surrendered over the weekend.

In a statement on Tuesday, Maj. Mark Anthony Tito, the 10ID chief of the Public Affairs Office, identified the surrenderers as squad leader Marjun Otag, 34, and his wife, Nelly, 20, who is also a medic under the NPA’s North Central Mindanao Regional Committee.

Two days later, another rebel, Emmely Banahan, 18, also surrendered due to injuries he sustained from military operations by field forces of the 1003Bde in the peripheries of the same town.

Brig. Gen. Allan Hambala, the 10ID commander, hopes more NPA rebels would surrender “instead of evading government forces and choosing to fight back.” (PNA)