Hit-and-run victims,hospital bill hits P2M cry out to Duterte!
The relatives of the victims in a hit-and-run accident have asked President Duterte for help in getting justice for their loved ones, saying the suspect, Baldwin Cham Velasco, was moneyed and well-connected.
The mother of 24-year-old Marinel Ravina, who miscarried and lost her baby as a result of the accident, also asked for financial help in a letter to Mr. Duterte, saying her daughter’s hospital bill has ballooned to P2 million. “I hope the President can help us in our finances and at the same time get justice for our loved ones. The suspect is rich and has connections,” said Leonila, who said Ravina, who was seven months pregnant at the time of the accident, remains confined at The Medical City’s intensive care unit.
Ravina’s unborn child would have been her third with her husband who is sick and jobless, Leonila added. The sister of another victim, Jake Sentillas, who died on the spot, said that since the accident, they had yet to see Velasco in person. “Come out and take responsibility for what you did,” Sahara said.
Ravina, Sentillas, along with Juan Carlo Villanueva and Micah Uy, were on their way home from work as call center agents. They were crossing the pedestrian lane on Doña Julia Vargas Avenue in Pasig City at 2:50 a.m. on July 31 when they were hit by a Subaru.
The driver of the sport utility vehicle did not stop, dragging Sentillas’ body by several meters from the scene of the accident. Rescuers took the victims to the hospital, where Sentillas was declared dead on arrival. His companions, Ravina, Villanueva and Uy, were injured. Velasco was identified after a witness gave them the SUV’s license plate, according to Senior Supt. Orlando Yebra Jr., Pasig police chief. Velasco now faces charges of reckless imprudence resulting in homicide and multiple injuries, and of abandonment of the victims.
According to Leonila, Velasco has yet to talk or offer help to her family. She also denied reports that they were offered P3 million to settle the case.
Sahara said she received word that Velasco, through his lawyer, had offered help to them. “We will not accept any settlement. We want justice. They can no longer bring back to life my brother. The family of the suspect has money. We may not have money but we will monitor the progress of this case. This is for my brother,” she told the Inquirer.
The victims’ families, who are being assisted by the Public Attorney’s Office, are set to meet with Assistant City Prosecutor Ernesto Sulat Jr. on Aug. 22 and 30 at the Pasig City Justice Hall to discuss their case.