A city-owned car assigned as police vehicle for the Tagbilaran City Police Station slammed into a perimeter fence of a fish sanctuary at Sitio Fatima, Guindulman on Sunday, July 17, 2016 after an alleged mentally ill person drove off on board the car.
Police identified the alleged car thief as Danilo Vaflor, single, 43 years old from Barangay Calambua, San Remegio, Cebu and is presently residing at Barangay Cabawan, Tagbilaran City.
Vaflor spotted the patrol car and after rummaging through the car interior, found the key and drove off and managed to reach the town of Guindulman, 85 kilometers from Tagbilaran City.
Upon reaching Barangay Cabantian, Vaflor rammed the stolen vehicle he was driving against the perimeter fence of a fish sanctuary at 9AM, four hours after he took off with the mobile patrol car.
According to details in the police spot report, the white colored Philippine National Police (PNP) Mitsubishi Adventure mobile patrol car was parked inside the Integrated Bus Terminal (IBT) near the Police Sub-Station after a routine mobile patrol at 5AM.
The designated civilian city government paid driver, El Gringo Canete told police investigators that he informed the duty police officers that he would be leaving to attend to a personal necessity and left the car keys in the glove compartment.
Police Officer 1 (PO1) George Del Castillo and PO1 Saldy Salvo discovered that their police car was missing after they resumed their patrol two hours later.
The police officers learned about the discovery of their missing patrol car after receiving a text message from the Guindulman Police Station regarding the accident involving the patrol car.
Vaflor, who reportedly escaped unscathed has a history of mental problems and was a “psyche patient” of the Vicente Sotto Medical Center in Cebu City.
His sister, Elona told police investigators that it was the usual practice of her brother to look for car keys in parked vehicles. Vaflor is a graduate of an automotive course.
Police Superintendent George Acol Vale, Tagbilaran City Police Chief is now conducting an investigation to determine operational lapses on the part of the police officers and the civilian driver that led to the embarrassing incident of carnapping of a police vehicle. (Chito M. Visarra)