A resident of General Trias, Cavite is dead after he was allegedly forced to do 300 pushups by the police when he was caught violating the quarantine curfew.
Adrian Luceña wrote in a Facebook post that his cousin, Darren Peñaredondo, was out to buy water when he was caught by village watchmen for violating the 6pm curfew on Thursday evening. He was brought to the town plaza where he and other quarantine violators were punished by the police, Rappler reported.
The victim ended up doing 300 rounds of push-ups because he failed to keep up with the other violators.
“They were asked to do pumping exercises 100 times all at the same time so he ended up doing 300 rounds,” Luceña said. “He went home and he couldn’t walk properly. Saturday morning he had a convulsion and we tried to revive him at home. Today [Sunday] he died.”
General Trias police chief Police Lieutenant Colonel Marlo Nillo Solero, however, denied that his men had forced Peñaredondo to do the pushups, saying that they don’t do such punishment to quarantine violators. But in a follow-up post, Luceña rejected the police chief’s excuse.
“The police said they don’t have that type of punishment and that they only ask violators to pick up trash. My cousin would not have gone home feeling weak if he was just made to pick up trash,” he said.
Despite Solero’s denial, he had been ordered by Mayor Ony Ferrer to conduct a “fair investigation” into the victim’s death.
“We are personally coordinating with the family of Mr. Peñaredondo to give them our condolences and help them with their needs. We are seeking immediate clarity on what occurred and to give the Peñaredondo family peace of mind,” Mayor Ferrer said in a statement.
The police have been criticized for the human rights violations that they have committed during the lockdown. In April 2020, the Quezon City police shot dead a retired military man who violated the quarantine because he was allegedly reaching for a gun that was hidden inside his bag. However, a witness said that the victim was only getting his quarantine pass.
The National Bureau of Investigation conducted a probe, and it alleged that the police had planted evidence on the victim to make it appear that he had a gun during the confrontation.
Cavite, along with Metro Manila and other areas, is under the enhanced community quarantine, which has been extended for another week. Quarantine rules prohibit residents from leaving their homes from 6pm to 5am.