Eleazar pushes for regular assessment of cops’ mental state

Eleazar pushes for regular assessment of cops’ mental state

MANILA – A regular assessment of the mental and emotional stability of policemen will prevent what happened at the Manila Police District (MPD) headquarters on Friday night when a drunk cop ran amuck, killed one of his colleagues, and injured another.

M/Sgt. Reynante Dipasupil, who began the shootout at about 11:30 p.m., died about an hour later at the nearby Manila Doctors Hospital along UN Avenue due to gunshot wounds to different parts of the body.

Philippine National Police (PNP) chief Gen. Guillermo Eleazar said in a video message on Sunday that their Health Service is finalizing the recommendations in the conduct of Psychiatric-Psychological Exam (PPE) as the Dipasupil case came less than a month after another drunk policeman fatally shot at point-blank a woman in Fairview, Quezon City

In December last year, a Parañaque cop likewise gunned down his two neighbors in Tarlac after complaining about their noise.

“This recent incident at MPD, along with the previous ones, highlights the need for us to closely look into the overall state of our men. Hindi nagtatapos sa kung paano nila ginagawa ang kanilang trabaho, kasama dito ang pagtingin sa kanilang physical, emotional at lalo na ang kanilang mental state (We also have to look after their emotional and physical state, not just how they do their jobs),” Eleazar said.

Eleazar said he is considering the conduct of PPE at least every three years as part of efforts to further improve the general welfare of PNP members, especially those involved in ground operations.

Based on initial information, Dipasupil indiscriminately fired his weapon at different offices, including that of MPD Director Brig. Gen. Leo Francisco.

Dipasupil wounded S/Sgt. Reynaldo Cordova and encountered M/Sgt. Romeo Cantal and PS/Sgt. Ferdinand Francia as he tried to escape.

Another shootout ensued, wounding Dipasupil and Cantal.

Cantal died at around 3:10 a.m. Saturday at the Manila Medical Center, also near the MPD headquarters, while Cordova is already out of danger.

“We commend the cops who tried to stop Dipasupil, particularly Romeo Cantal who lost his life. We grieve with the family of Sergeants Dipasupil and Cantal and we assure them of our assistance, along with another policeman who was wounded during that attack,” said Eleazar said.

Eleazar assured the MPD is already conducting a thorough investigation.

“The investigation I ordered on the unfortunate incident at the Manila Police District goes beyond the shooting as this includes other aspects such as possible mental health issues of all our personnel,” he added. (PNA)

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