SAN Antonio, Nueva Ecija -- Murder charges have been filed against the alleged lone gunman in the gun-slaying of independent municipal councilor-bet Jose Allan Joson, who was shot dead in front of his house here last October 19.
Town police commander Chief Insp. Marlon D. Cudal said the charges were filed by Catherine, the victim’s widow, before the Provincial Prosecutor’s Office on Nov. 13, or 25 days after her husband, a former number one town councilor, was murdered.
Cudal identified the suspect as Jacieboy Castillo, alias Jeboy, a native of Bgy. Bagong Sikat, Cabanatuan City, and a resident of Bgy. San Mariano, this town.
He said Castillo, who remains at-large, was identified based on witnesses’ accounts and through a composite sketch made by the authorities.
Mayor Arvin C. Salonga, who earlier put up a P200,000 bounty for any information leading to the arrest of the suspect and the early resolution of the case, expressed elation when he was informed personally of this positive development by Cudal at his office yesterday.
“Natutuwa ako at may magandang development na sa kaso ni Joson, malaking bagay ito para sa kataru-ngan na inaasam nating lahat at para sa pamilya ng nasawi,” said Salonga.
The reelectionist mayor, who is running unopposed for a second term on next year’s local polls, however, said he is hoping that the suspect will not be labeled a fall guy or another case of mistaken identity similar to that of Fr. Richmond Nilo’s earlier murder case where the authorities nabbed the wrong suspect.
Prior to his killing, Joson, 42, of Bgy. Julo, was designated by Salonga as his consultant for barangay affairs starting April 2018.
In his original list of councilor bets wanting to join his 2019 local slate, Salonga said Joson was listed number 10 among the 17 aspirants included on the said list.
“Eh hindi siya nakuha sa walong kandidato na pinili ni Vice Mayor Julie Maxwell,” explained Salonga.