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Photo from Land Transportation Office-Philippines Facebook page
MANILA, Philippines — The owner of the sports utility vehicle (SUV) involved in the viral hit-and-run incident in Mandaluyong still failed to show up at the Land Transportation Office (LTO) for the scheduled hearing on Friday, prompting the agency to push through with their probe.
According to lawyer Keiron Gubatan of LTO’s Traffic Adjudication Service, since the owner failed to appear at the hearings, LTO’s Intelligence and Investigation Division (IID) headed by officer-in-charge Renante Melitante will continue with the probe of the incident — and will its submit findings to the committee.
This will be done without showing the results to the owner.
“Due to the failure of the respondent to appear before the committee, twice na po siyang hindi umappear, the office of Sir Militante, the intelligence investigation division, will submit their report and findings to the committee, and the committee will decide on the recognition and will submit to the honorable Assistant Secretary (Edgar) Galvante for approval,” Gubatan said.
However, Gubatan said that a decision has not been reached as to whether the license of the Toyota RAV4 owner will be revoked.
“The committee will evaluate the report and findings of the IID […] and we will recommend to the Assistant Secretary the appropriate action. But as of this time po, we have not yet evaluated the findings on whether or not we would revoke the license of the respondent,” he added.
“Immediately po upon turnover of the documents by IID to the committee, the committee will resolve it based on the findings. And then we will forward the resolution to the Assistant Secretary for approval. But as to the timeline, when will be the decision, that will depend on the evidence submitted to us by the IID,” he added.
LTO Law Enforcement Service acting director Atty. Clarence Guinto said that the agency’s personnel would work on the case over the weekend, adding that they will try to submit the document to Galvante by Monday.
“Over the weekend they’d work out the resolution, and hopefully it will be on the table of the Assistant Secretary by Monday […] and once we have a decision, we will make a press statement on that,” Guinto said.
“Today we have a schedule (hearing) at 1:00 p.m. but unfortunately the respondent did not again appear, so I think the case is submitted for resolution,” he added.
Earlier, Mandaluyong City Police chief Col. Gauvin Mel Unos told reporters after the LTO hearing that the security guard who was hit by the driver of the Toyota RAV4 with plate number NCO 3781 has already been released from the hospital.
The security guard sustained several broken bones and bruises, and had to be monitored at the intensive care unit of a hospital.
READ: Security guard injured after hit-and-run incident in Mandaluyong
However, the said vehicle — which went viral on social media after a dashboard camera caught the vehicle’s driver ramming over the security personnel along Doña Julia Vargas Avenue — was nowhere to be found. Unos said they visited the owner’s residence but the vehicle was not there.
An alarm has been raised for both the vehicle and the license of the car owner, which would allow authorities to flag down the car.
READ: Security guard discharged but RAV 4 in hit-and-run case missing
The driver is facing charges for frustrated murder and abandoning the victim. Last Wednesday, Unos said that they also filed obstruction of justice complaints against the security guard of the subdivision where the suspect is believed to be a resident of, after they failed to cooperate with the investigation.
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