PNP Chief: Slain minor Kian not as innocent as you think

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, October 13) — Police Chief Director General Ronald Dela Rosa is not buying the claim 17-year-old Kian Delos Santos was innocent when he was killed by his men.

Dela Rosa on Friday said he has information that indicates Kian was not faultless when he was killed by Caloocan police in August. Police alleged Kian fired at them during an anti-drug operation, which prompted them to fire back. They also alleged he was a drug courier for his father and uncle.

"Pardon me sa mga grieving parents, pardon me sa namatay na bata, kapag sinabi mo na totally innocent 'yun na pinatay, I don't buy that story dahil meron akong alam talaga," he told CNN Philippines' The Source on Friday.

[Translation: Pardon to the grieving parents and to the slain minor, when they say he was totally innocent, I don't buy that story. I know something.]

But the Philippine National Police Chief said this does not justify the killing of the teen.

Dela Rosa said the public will find out about the "true story" behind Kian's killing at the right time and proper venue, which is the court.

"There will come a time na lalabas talaga ang real story about that, kung ano talaga ang totoo... In due time. May istorya 'yan," he said.

The killing of Kian in a police operation has sparked public outrage and cast doubt on the controversial war on drugs which began on July 2016. President Rodrigo Duterte assured Kian's parents of justice in their son's death.

On October 10, President Duterte ordered the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency to lead the war against drugs, effectively divesting the Philippine National Police of responsibility for the campaign.

Four Caloocan City policemen are facing a murder complaint with the Justice Department for the killing of Kian on August 16 after a report on the incident by the National Bureau of Investigation.

The NBI said Kian was shot while on a kneeling position or fetal position, while the shooter was standing.

"PO3 Arnel Oares and his cohorts accosted victim [Kian] and afterwards dragged him... and shot him without mercy," the report said, referring to one of the four policemen.

The Caloocan City police force has been relieved and is now undergoing retraining due to the controversy.