Retired Coast Guard member ‘mauls’ teacher, blames incident on failure to take maintenance meds

A RETIRED member of the Philippine Coast Guard landed in jail after he mauled a teacher of the Academic and Skills Development School in Barangay Cotcot in the northern town of Liloan, Cebu past midnight Sunday, March 19, 2023.

The suspect was identified as 56-year-old Ferdinand Laurente Manto, a widower who resides in Dapdap, Barangay Catarman in the same town.

Manto is currently detained in the Liloan Police Station.

The suspect later sought the forgiveness of his victim, 24-year-old Paolo Catarina Mollena, who resides in Barangay Cotcot but originally hails from the northern town of Catmon.

Manto blamed his high blood pressure for losing his cool, saying he hadn’t taken his maintenance medicines for two days.

Master Sergeant Nelson Sadile, police investigator, said Mollena arrived at the station at 1:29 a.m. to report the incident.

According to the initial investigation, Manto, who is the father of the school’s owner, arrived at the campus at 12:49 a.m.

He approached Mollena, who was chaperoning pupils attending a campfire on school grounds, and ordered him to look for an employee inside the campus.

But since Mollena was busy, he did not immediately go, which angered the suspect. Manto allegedly struck Mollena in the back three times. Pupils who witnessed the attack became afraid and a commotion ensued.

“Gikwelyuan niya ang maestro, pwerting kuroga. Gihulga nga dili na ko gusto makakita nimo ugma,” Sadile said.

(He collared the teacher, who, by this time, was shaking in fear. He then told him that he didn’t want to see the teacher the next day.)

Manto then allegedly punched the victim, who, in his panic that the suspect would hurt him some more, hurriedly left campus and sought his sibling’s assistance.

Together, they went to the police station.

The suspect was still at the scene when police arrived and was arrested.

“Una sa tanan, mangayo kog pasaylo niya. Dakong sayop akong nabuhat. Nainit lang ko. Nakalitan,” Manto told Superbalita Cebu.

(First of all, I want to ask for his forgiveness. I committed a grave mistake. I lost my cool. I was taken by surprise.)

Manto said he regretted what happened. (GPL)