Public Disturbance and Police empowerment

December 4, 2011- Calauan, Laguna for more than 30 minutes of loud continuous banging of roof woke me up. The culprit was a male with more or less 5 feet in height, more or less 120 pounds in weight with mental disability and just a boy, might be 16 years of age to 18.

I saw him standing up in the building 20 meters far from my house and in an instant I sent text messages to our dear Mayor and Vice Mayor. I don’t have the numbers of the Police station and the first thing in my mind is for the executives to know what’s happening.

There’s a Police Station just in front of the building where the noise is coming, more or less just 6 meters far from the place and I am thinking that nobody maybe was there because the boy was still continuing to pound the roof of different buildings just in front of my house. I reached for my car keys and went out to check the police and sad to say, there were more or less six of them and just standing by on the other side of the road and looking or maybe waiting for something or someone to stop?

I asked the officers what their plans are and one of them told me that the gate where to go inside of the buildings is closed and that they don’t have a ladder. The gate they were telling me belongs to my father. When I was in college, I could go up and jump alone in that gate without the help of other people and hearing the officer about this alibi is very disappointing. I told to one of the officer that I could jump to that gate and in 10 minutes together with the other officers, they asked the tenant of the other building where to go up. As disappointed as I am, while some of the bystanders are laughing about the situation, I feel so helpless.

From the internet, A public disturbance is a legal offense that involves a person or people engaging in behavior which causes an unreasonable nuisance to others. Public disturbance are typically classified as misdemeanors, and the specific offenses that qualify are usually governed by local laws. Often associated with excessive noise, they can also include some types of inappropriate language, physical behaviors, or the generation of offensive odors.

In this case, the boy is making some people afraid because he might go inside their house and do something with the big wood in his hand. The noise still keeps on going for several minutes and I am telling you, minutes are like hours when nobody is doing anything.

Mayor Felisa Berris arrived then soon after the Calauan Chief of Police. There were two officers on my father’s 3rd floor building now, looking for the boy. The boy went inside the building and started to break two-window glass, now it’s the property that needs to be taken care of not to mention the roof that in times of rains will obviously have holes now. For some people, a boy with a wood in his hand and pounding the roof is just nothing especially if that’s not their property but to me and for those people in the area, the situation is worst. What if the children are playing? What if it goes inside to our houses? Surely, we cannot let our doors open now.

The boy was captured. He is so thin and half naked with bruises. I don’t have any complaints to the boy if he has a mental disability and for the police, they captured the one who made noise and property disturbance though there might have been no property loss if they are quicker. My question is, what if I didn’t go out and asked the officers to do something?

From my interview last time with the former Calauan Police Chief, the ratio of an officer and Calaueno is 1:1700 which is way beyond the ideal ratio of 1:500 or one police officer per 500 people. The time the officers respond is unbearable to the people involved though they achieved their goal, to capture but only with broken properties involved now.