Police, jail officials publicize photos of North Cotabato jail escapees

Police and jail officials on Saturday distributed photos of 100 jail escapees who bolted the North Cotabato District Jail in an effort to bring them back to the jail facility, three days after it was attacked by lawless elements.

Police Chief Insp. Joyce Birrey, speaking for North Cotabato Police Office, told the Philippine News Agency (PNA) that the distribution of mug shots and vital information on each escapee was part of the efforts to recover other inmates who escaped the facility in Barangay Amas, Kidapawan City on Wednesday.

Photos of the escapees, many of whom were facing illegal drug charges, have been displayed in bus and jeepney terminals, public markets, even on public transport vehicles.

Birrey said the efforts were also coordinated with nearby police offices in the provinces of Maguindanao, Sultan Kudarat, Davao del Sur, Bukidnon and nearby areas.

Of the 158 inmates who fled, 58 had been accounted for with 10 of them killed during manhunt operation, 46 recaptured and two injured now confined in the hospital.

Birrey said no "shoot to kill" order was issued by police and military authorities.

North Cotabato Board Member Soc Pinol has urged Gov. Shirlyn Macasarte-Villanueva to move the district jail from its present location at the back of the provincial capitol compound to "a more secure and safe place for all."

In his letter to the governor, Pinol also sought for the deployment of more jail guards from the Bureau of Jail Management to put an end to repeated attacks by comrades detained crime offenders.

The BJMP was also considering the transfer of the provincial jail to a more secured area.

We are highly considering to transfer the facility to a more secured area," Jail Inspector Elizar Roncesvalles, BJMP-12 spokesperson said.

The jail facility has been attacked three times the past decade but no increased security measures were undertaken until today.

Board Member Pinol also recommended the transfer to Bicutan of all "high profile inmates" to prevent similar attacks in the future.

The jail facility was a former school compound developed and converted into a provincial jail. It was designed to accommodate about 500 persons but it is housing 1,511 at the time of the attack.

Gov. Macasarte-Villanueva has recommended to Interior and Local Government Sec. Ismael Sueno to sack North Cotabato provincial jail warden Supt. Peter John Bungat.

Source: Philippines News Agency