AN officer in President Rodrigo Duterte’s elite military security force was found shot dead on Tuesday inside the sprawling presidential compound, an official said.
Major Harin Gonzaga, 37, was found by his wife with a gunshot wound to the heart inside his room in the Malacañang compound in Manila, said Brigadier General Lope Dagoy, head of the Presidential Security Group.
Dagoy said there were no initial signs of foul play or any indication of a struggle but police are still investigating.
The incident took place far from Duterte’s residence inside the compound, Dagoy said, adding that even other members of the security force were unaware of the shooting until Gonzaga’s wife Sheila found the body.
The wife, who is a sergeant in the security force, said the couple were not facing any problems apart from Gonzaga’s heavy workload, Dagoy told reporters.
Gonzaga was in charge of the security force’s operations and was not one of the president’s personal guards, he added.
The Manila Police District (MPD) is now probing the death of the PSG member.
The victim was assigned at the chief operation-OG3 and tasked with preparing the schedule of activities of the PSG and residing at No. 73 PSG Complex in Malacañang Park.
The couple’s two kids were in school when the incident took place.
Scene of the Crime Operatives (SOCO) recovered from the crime scene a .45 cal. pistol, the victim’s personal gun, which was found beside his body. The President was said to be in his Malacanang residence and was informed of what happened.
Meanwhile, police said that some PSG members heard gunshots but ignored them since a firing range is just nearby. Dagoy personally took a look at the victim’s room and said he found no signs of struggle.
The victim’s family meantime said he had no known enemies and was dedicated to his job. Probers said the incident was the first to happen at the PSG compound.