Cop in Tarlac double murder pleads not guilty

MANILA, Philippines – Jonel Nuezca, the cop involved in the fatal shooting of neighbors Sonya and Frank Anthony Gregorio in Paniqui, Tarlac in December, pleaded not guilty to murder charges.

Jonel Nuezca pleads not guilty
Photo from Paniqui Municipal Police Station.

Police Regional Office 3 Director Valeriano de Leon said on Sunday that Nuezca insisted innocence on the crime even though he was caught on video killing the mother and son during a heated argument.

NOTE: A plea of not guilty means the accused believes that he/she has not violated the law. When he/she plead not guilty, the Judge will set a date for trial. A trial will not be held on initial arraignment date as all necessary witnesses will not be present.

The hearing on Nuezca's case is set on February 4, 2021. He will be represented by Atty. Rolando Gragasin of the Public Attorney's Office (PAO)-Paniqui as counsel.

The recent statement of Nuezca is in contrast to his admission last month when he voluntarily surrendered.

“Nakausap ko na po at aminado naman siya na nagawa nya yung pangyayaring iyon at sising-sisi siya sa nagawa niyang iyon (I spoke with him and he admitted to the crime and he said he regrets that he did it),” Lt. Col. Noriel Rombaoa, chief of Paniqui Municipal Police Station, said in an interview.

Nuezca already faced several administrative cases since 2010, though most had been dropped or dismissed due to lack of evidence.

In May and December 2019, a grave misconduct and homicide cases were filed agaist him, but both were dismissed due to lack of substantial evidence.

In 2016, he was slapped of serious neglect of duty for failing to attend a court hearing wherein he was supposed to be the prosecution witness in a drug case. However, the case against him was later dropped and closed.

In 2014, he faced less grave neglect of duty for refusing to submit to a drug test and for leaving the testing area without permission or clearance from the NAPOLCOM Inspectors. He faced a 31-day suspension over this case.

In 2013, he also faced grave misconduct over an undisclosed admin case but this was also dropped and closed.

In 2010, he faced a 10-day suspension for undisclosed reasons.

— The Summit Express

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