Comedian and veteran disc jockey Rizalino Torralba, popularly known over the airwaves as Kiss FM’s “Inday Ruping,” was shot dead inside an inn in Tagbilaran City on Saturday night.
Torralba was allegedly shot by his driver, Andrew Fronteras, after the victim performed in a show at a local food park.
Tagbilaran City Police Station (TCPS) commander Lt. Col. Mary Peralta said they found Torralba’s remains at the Backpacker’s Inn in Barangay Mansasa at 8:30 a.m. on Sunday after Fronteras reported the incident to police.
Fronteras was placed under police custody after he voluntarily surrendered to the TCPS at 9 a.m., several hours after Torralba’s death. Authorities are preparing to file a murder charge against him.
“Frontreras called PSMS Celso Orapa of this station and informed him that he wants to surrender for the commission of a crime…he surrendered without coercion, force or intimidation. He went here personally,” said Peralta.
Fronteras who admitted that he was with Torralba during the night of the incident claimed that they were fighting and they scuffled for possession of his pistol which led to the accidental shooting.
“Sabi niya Inday Rufing ‘grabbed my gun which I put on the bed and it accidentally fired hitting Inday Ruping’,” Peralta said.
“Ang sabi is nag-away sila, we will go to that based on the result of the SOCO,” she added.
Peralta however expressed doubt over Frontera’s claim that the shooting was accidental considering that the suspect fled the crime scene and left Torralba alone inside the room following the incident.
“If it’s accidental, na according sakanya, dinala man lang sana niya sa pinaka malapit na hospital because Backpacker’s Inn is so near to Ace Hospital, it’s just about 50 meters away,” she said.
Investigators are still looking into the relationship between the victim and the suspect.
Peralta said that Torralba and Fronteras were captured on a closed-circuit television (CCTV) camera as they checked in at the establishment at past 10 p.m. after the victim starred in a show at a popular night spot in the city.
At 11 p.m., Fronteras was seen through the same CCTV camera as he went out of the room alone. After leaving the crime scene, Frontreras, based on his claim, went to Jagna.
“Lumabas siya at di na bumalik,” said Peralta.
According to to the police chief, Fronteras rode a bus from Jagna to Tagbilaran City prior to surrendering to police on Sunday morning.
He said he went to church first before deciding to surrender.
Meanwhile, police are still looking for the alleged murder weapon as Fronteras had no gun in his possession when he surrendered to the authorities.
“Sabi niya naitapon niya so yun pa yung titingnan natin,” said Peralta.
Torralba was a disk jockey for station DYRD’s KISS 102.3 FM for 15 years and was one of the decades-old station’s all-time most popular personalities.
On top of his radio stardom, Torralba was also a frequent host of various events and starred as a comedian in numerous shows across the province.
Following Torralba’s death, the management of station DYRD issued a statement mourning his sudden passing.
“There will be no other Inday Ruping. No voice and talent like his can fill in the void in the airlanes. The laughter and the fun he brings to homes and offices while tuned at their fav Kiss 102.3FM will forever linger in the ears of his thousands of fans,” said DYRD station manager Peter Dejaresco.
“The kindness and the humility in a heart like that of Inday Ruping will be missed by many of his friends, both in the media circle and in his campus acqauintances. His Kiss FM radio fans and the entire DYRD family will miss him. But his voice and humor will continue to linger on. Goodbye Ping (amping),” he added.