A DAY after bolting their prison cell, two inmates of the Sta. Barbara Police Station lock-up cell voluntarily surrendered.
Reniel Sellarico, 25, of Brgy. Talanghauan, Sta. Barbara, Iloilo, and Mark Arca, 20, of Barasalon, Janiuay town, surrendered around 5 a.m. of April 13, 2019 at Bagumbayan, Sta. Barbara.
Sellarico is facing a rape charge while Arca is accused of murder.
The other jailbird, Bhrix Sarin, 19, of Sitio Cantacson, Brgy. Caningay Candoni, Negros Occidental, remains at-large as of this writing.
Both Sellarico and Arca claimed that Sarin, who was accused of rape, masterminded their escape around 3 a.m. of April 12.
There were four detainees when the escape happened. But the other detainee, who was accused along with Arca, was in a separate cell.
Sellarico claimed that Sarin had been talking about his plan to escape since he was jailed last month. He even regarded picking the cell’s padlock as child’s play.
By April 8, Sarin already opened the prison’ cell lock using a wire but could not find the opportunity to escape.
Sarin finally realized his plan early morning after seeing the cop on duty go to the kitchen to drink water. He opened the cell’s door and awakened Sellarico and Arca.
Sellarico claimed he initially refused to escape but Sarin was insistent.
Police Captain Jose Rey Pabalan, Sta. Barbara police chief, said the prisoners passed by the side door, went to the back portion of the building, and scaled the fence.
Police only learned of the jailbreak three hours later.
Sellarico said they went to the nearby Dugan-Duyan village and took refuge in a bamboo plantation.
But by 11 p.m. of the same day, they decided to go to Sellarico’s house where his wife convinced them to surrender.
“I decided to surrender because of my children. I still want to live for them,” Sellarico said in vernacular.
He and Arca decided to yield but Sarin stood pat on his decision to flee.
Police Colonel Marlon Tayaba, Iloilo police chief, said he already ordered an investigation on the possible culpability of cops on duty during the escape.
Tayaba said he tasked the Provincial Investigation and Detective Management Section to conduct the probe.
Meanwhile, Pabalan said he already instructed all 12 police officers who were on duty when the escape happened to submit an explanation letter.