RTC judge shot dead inside office; suspect lawyer kills self

RTC judge shot dead inside office; suspect lawyer kills self

A heated argument between a Presiding Regional Trial Court judge in Manila and a lawyer accordingly led to a tragic shooting incident right inside the office of the former at the Manila City Hall on Wednesday, 11 November 2020.

The victim was identified as Regional Trial Court Judge Ma. Theresa Abadilla Samonte, 44, single, who was shot dead by suspect Atty. Amado Rebato Bustamante in the middle of a heated argument at her office at Rm. 535.

The 42-year-old suspect, who serves as Abadilla’s clerk of court, committed suicide using the same firearm seconds later by popping a single bullet that went through his ears police said.

The fatal incident happened right inside the office of the RTC (Branch 45) judge who sustained gunshot wounds on her face and body.

Shortly after the shooting incident, Manila MPD SMaRT operatives immediately responded and brought judge Abadilla to nearby Manila Medical Center but she was declared dead on arrival the brother of the victim in Rolando Abadilla Jr. said.

Witnesses said judge Abadilla and the suspect were engaged in a heated argument when shots suddenly rang out at around 2:45 p.m. from inside the office of the victim.

MPD’s homicide section are still investigating the motive of the killing and subsequent suicide of the lawyer suspect.

It was gathered that Judge Abadilla handles the controversial cyber libel case of Rappler’s Maria Ressa. Kiara Lauren Ibanez/Benjamin Cuaresma/IA

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