NBI files murder charges vs. cop who shot Army veteran at checkpoint

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, June 4) — The National Bureau of Investigation has filed charges of murder, perjury, and planting of evidence against the policeman who fatally shot a former soldier at a quarantine checkpoint.

Police Master Sergeant Daniel Florendo is facing charges for shooting Winston Ragos, a retired soldier who supposedly violated the community quarantine protocols. The cop said he thought Ragos was pulling out a gun from his bag after a shouting match near the checkpoint at Barangay Pasong Putik in Quezon City in April.

NBI Deputy Director Ferdinand Lavin confirmed to CNN Philippines that they have filed a case against Florendo at the Quezon City Prosecutor's Office.

Four other police trainees involved in the incident were charged, a move that was welcomed by the Philippine Army.

"May this development be the first step in our quest of justice for Ragos and his family. Through this, we hope that we can at least honor his sacrifices to the nation he served, and raise awareness on the mental health issues our soldiers face," the Army said in a statement.

Ragos' mother said her 34-year-old son had been suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder and had been dealing with some mental health issues.

Philippine National Police Chief General Archie Gamboa earlier defended Florendo, saying the police officer exercised a "judgment call" at the scene, as he assumed that Ragos tried to draw his firearm to fight back.

But witnesses said the victim was not carrying a firearm, only identification cards and his quarantine pass. Police said they recovered a .38 caliber pistol from Ragos' bag.