“With the initial probe conducted by PMA, it has been revealed that the shooting incident is an issue of mental health problem on the side of the shooter that led to this tragedy,” Major Cherryl Tindog said in a statement.
The PMA shooting incident killed a member of the Philippine Air Force, identified as Staff Sergeant Joefry Torqueza. Another soldier identified as SSgt. Vivencio Raton and the gunman were also injured and treated at Baguio General Hospital and Medical Center.
The shooter was identified as Airman 2nd Class Christopher Lim and was also from the Air Force. Initial investigation said Lim allegedly used an M-16 Armalite rifle and fired indiscriminately inside the B-1022 EP Barracks around 4:30 am.
Authorities said Raton managed to stop Lim from firing. Police said the three soldiers had a heated argument before PMA shooting.
The PMA vowed to check on the mental health condition of their cadets and military personnel in the military institution.
“Our soldiers, like any other person, may have been silently struggling with such ordeal,” Tindog said.
“The Academy is and will continue to be providing psycho-social intervention to identify and help its personnel who may have mental health problems, similar to what has been done for our cadets. This is the PMA’s commitment to its personnel in order for them to remain psychologically fit for any mission given them,” she added.
Tindog noted that even if the shooting incident were an isolated case, the PMA administration would investigate every single detail of it so that it would not happen again in the future.
She said PMA is also working with the police for an impartial investigation and the case’s speedy resolution.
The PMA, meanwhile, expressed condolences to Torqueza’s bereaved family.
Meanwhile, the PMA also expressed condolences to Torqueza’s grieving family. The military institution would also extend all the necessary support to them.