Suspected ‘Latigo Gang’ strikes during curfew hours?

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DAVAO CITY —- Residents of the city are alarmed over reports that the ‘Latigo Gang ‘ is again out to whip individuals specially the ‘small and under height’ when curfew hours strike.

The ‘Latigo Gang’ simultaneously operated Sunday night in areas of S I R in Matina, Sasa, Agdao and Calinan.

The ‘Latigo Gang’ moved around the streets onboard a motorbike, they wore helmet, covered their faces with bonnet and, are reportedly armed with baton, arnis and barb wires.

They allegedly hit minors who are still on the streets when curfew hours strike at 11:00 pm.

Marco Kenneth Buenaflor, a resident of Fatima, Brgy. San Antonio Agdao was among the victims who suffered bruises and contusions.

Buenaflor in a Facebook post believes that policemen were behind his attack, based on the narrative of a village leader who talked to him on phone.

In his Facebook post, Buenaflor said “Kagabie nag too ko nga safe ko naglakaw paule paghuman nako ug hatod sa akong friend pra safe sya makauli. Sa dihang naay upat ka dagko nga aktor nga nagbunal.2 sa akoa sa walay igo nga rason. Wala jud naka tabang sa akoa bisan tanod man lang kay nag out na daw sila around 12am.”

Translation: (Last night I thought I was safe to walk around the city after I sent my friend home, suddenly, four big actors whipped me without any reason, no one helped me, even barangay tanods, I was told they were off already)

In a video posted by a certain Hoovy Montelibano, about six motorcycle-riding men moved around Sasa and shouted “Uli na mo curfew na, naay liquor ban, Uli! Uli! (GO home it’s curfew time, go home! Go Home!).

While the man who was beaten shouted “Ayaw mo pamunal sa ako, wala man koy sala sa inyo , unsa ko bata kay inyong hapakon, nipalit ra ko, buang, nanghapak sila sa ako -a unsa ko bata kay inyong hapakon(Don’t beat me, I haven’t done anything against you, I am not a kid, crazy! they beat me, I am not a kid that they just spank).

In the conversation, the man mentioned names which are known to him.

In his video blog, Buenaflor claimed a village leader told him “Naa daw order sa taaas ingon sa kagawad nga nagtawag sa ko, wala man nila na inform ang publiko ana, unsa nalang ang mga putot ug katong mga gabii na mogawas.”

Translation (There is an order from the top, a barangay kagawad told me, they did not inform the public about it, what will happen to small people like me? and those small guys who work late night?).

Buenaflor claimed he was informed by his friend that those who whipped him were policemen, but were not in uniform.

The victim alleged that thos who whipped him were policemen from Sta. Ana Police Station, a reason why he filed his complaint before the Police Regional Office XI (PRO-XI).

He further claimed, the ‘Latigo Cops’ who hit him were equipped with wooden baton and pistols were tacked on their hips.

In Barangay 37-D, a Sangguniang Kabataan Councilor and the grandchild of the barangay captain were victimized.

In Sasa area, a group of LGBT were also among those who were hit by the Latigo Gang.

The Davao City Police Office in a statement said they heightened the alert level of the city after they received reports about the ‘whipping’ incidents.-Editha Z. Caduaya/

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