Filipino cop in charge of clearing 'killer highway' of illegal vendors shot dead

Filipino cop in charge of clearing 'killer highway' of illegal vendors shot dead
An investigator takes pictures of SPO4 Edward Torio who was killed in an ambush on Commonwealth Avenue in Quezon City.

A policeman in charge of clearing the so-called "killer highway" in Quezon City of illegal vendors died on the spot after he was ambushed by four men at 8:30 a.m. on Thursday.

SPO4 Edward Torio, 47, suffered over 15 gunshot wounds, mostly in the face and body. Around 24 shells from a .45-cal. firearm were recovered from the crime scene on Commonwealth Avenue near the Commission on Audit, according to case investigator SPO1 Jaime Jimena.

Quezon City Police District director Chief Supt. Richard Albano said that investigators were looking into the possibility that the killing was job-related.

As overall supervisor of Task Force Commonwealth, the victim was in charge of the group that conducted clearing operations against illegal sidewalk vendors on the busy thoroughfare.

"It is possible that the attack was work-related. Torio may have received threats before the ambush," Albano said.

Before he was shot, the victim was driving to work in his owner-type jeepney. As he approached the COA building, four men on two motorcycles started firing at his vehicle.

Because of his wounds, the victim lost control of his jeepney which hit a vehicle parked at a car wash shop at the corner of Kalayaan Street.

The police said the gunmen approached the jeepney and shot Torio several more times until he died.

One of the gunmen then took the policeman's service firearm before he and his cohorts escaped.

The police said the gunmen apparently tailed the victim after he left his house at Camp Karingal until the time they shot him, just a few meters from where the Task Force Commonwealth office was located.

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