Some updates on the incident that rocked the Loyola Schools.
A happy occasion for the graduating students of Ateneo Law School turned into a day of horror. A gunman killed three people and wounded one at the Katipunan campus on July 24. Police identified him as Dr. Chao Tiao Yumol, who they arrested after a short chase.
Former Lamitan City mayor Rose Furigay was one of Yumol’s victims. Her longtime assistant Victor George Capistrano was also killed. So was Ateneo security guard Jeneven Bandiala. Furigay’s daughter Hannah (who was to graduate that day) sustained serious injuries.
Hannah was immediately taken to a nearby hospital. The elder Furigay and Bandiala died on arrival at separate hospitals. Capistrano died at the scene of the crime.
The aftermath of the Ateneo shooting
After the shooting, Yumol reportedly went to B. Gonzales Street, a few minutes away from Ateneo’s Gate 3. He tried and failed to commandeer a tricycle, then fled on foot toward Esteban Abada Street.
Somehow, he was able to get into a yellow car on the same street. He headed for Aurora Boulevard, where he ditched the car for a UV bus. That was when the police caught up with him. He was arrested and two guns were found in his possession.
Ateneo canceled the graduation rites of the Law School Class of 2022 due to the shooting. The university released a statement soon after. It said, in part, “Ateneo is continuing to work with authorities to deal with the incident.”
President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. and Vice President Sara Duterte condemned the incident. Marcos Jr. said, in part, “We commit our law enforcement agencies to bring all involved to justice.”
Duterte urged the PNP to put consistent operations against illegal firearms in place. Her predecessor, former VP Leni Robredo, said the shooting should serve as a reminder. A reminder to push back against things that promote impunity. Furigay and her husband were “strong supporters” of Robredo’s Angat Buhay program.
Dr. Yumol is currently facing multiple charges. Quezon City prosecutors indicted him for carnapping, frustrated murder, murder, and more.
The shooter’s motive
On July 24, Furigay’s legal counsel Quirino Esguerra offered a possible motive. Apparently, Yumol has an ax to grind with the Furigays. In 2018, Furigay ordered the closure of Yumol’s clinic. He didn’t have the right paperwork to operate it. A frustrated Yumol aired his sentiments on social media. That led to the Furigays suing him for cyber libel.
Yumol had a verified Facebook page. It’s no longer up, but before its deactivation, he used it to claim the Furigays were corrupt. Kelsey, one of Furigay’s twin daughters, told reporters that Yumol once attacked her. He spread rumors that she used her business as a front for drug-related activities.
“We knew of him, but we didn’t know he would take it this far,” Kelsey said.
Ateneo gunman’s father killed
On Friday morning, Rolando Yumol, 69, died in front of his home in Lamitan, Basilan. He was the father of the Ateneo gunman.
PNP-PIO chief BGen. Roderick Alba reported that Lamitan City police are investigating the case. “So far, it is speculative to assume its direct relation to the shooting incident last Sunday.” He said.
Reports state that shooters on a motorcycle opened fire at Yumol at 6:30 AM. BGen. Arthur Cabalona says Yumol had a security detail. He received many death threats after the incident at Ateneo.
“We went to his house because there were threats to his life. Police officers were going there to provide security. Unfortunately, he went out of his house earlier. A motorcycle rider with a back rider passed by, and he was shot,” BGen. Arthur said.
The elder Yumol’s murder scared his relatives. Reports state that the Ateneo gunman’s kin went into hiding.
The Furigays speak
The former mayor Furigay was married to incumbent Lamitan mayor Oric Furigay. He and their daughters now have to face a world without her.
“Words can’t express how broken we feel. My dad is so heartbroken because he loved my mom so much. They were partners in everything,” Hannah’s twin sister Kelsey said.
As of July 29, Hannah continues to recover in a hospital. She’s stable but needs another surgery soon. Meanwhile, Kelsey is baffled by the wealth of fake news about her mother.
“Don’t believe everything that you read online right away. There’s no excuse for killing. He has no right to take a life. I want the public to do their research. My mom was a wife, a sister, and a friend. She was also a human being. How can people talk about it like it’s nothing?” Kelsey said.
Featured Image Daniella Sison