A day after his 30th birthday, Patrolman Regim Lachica Gacod of the 7th Special Action Force perished in a gunfight between government forces and armed men in Barangay Bualo Lipid, Maimbung, Sulu on June 24.
Gacod of Kapangan, Benguet and San Gabriel, La Union, was deployed with his team in a joint operation with the Criminal Investigation and Detection Group as the lead and the Army’s 41st Infantry Battalion.
The team was set to deliver the warrant of arrest of Pando Mudjasan, the former vice mayor of Miambung, Sulu but his men rained bullets on the approaching government operatives.
This resulted in a gun fight that led to Gacod being killed in action while 13 others from the government troops were wounded including a soldier, four officers of the police Provincial Mobile Force Company, six SAF commandos and two civilians.
In an interview with Col. Jorry Baclor, chief of the AFP Public Affairs Office, Mudjasan is facing search warrants for alleged violation of Republic Act 10591 or Comprehensive Firearms and Ammunition Regulation Act andillegal possession of explosives, and arrest warrants for alleged frustrated murder, double murder, and multiple murder.
The police alleged Mudjasan controls a group of armed men who act as private armed groups that might be hired by politicians in the upcoming barangay and Sangguniang Kabataan elections in October.
Mudjasan, who fled the scene and is being pursued by government troops, is also an alleged commander of the Moro National Liberation Front.
Gacod was a graduate of the College of Criminal Justice Education Mahadlika Class of Feb. 16, 2017 of the University of the Cordilleras. He was then the battalion commander.
Messages of condolences from relatives and friends flooded his Facebook account “FiveOne Gacod”.
“Your juniors from the practicum program class will be forever grateful for the paths you have paved for students. We will keep your legacy with us, sir,” the UC-CCJE practicum group stated.
“While it breaks our heart to lose you brother, indeed your courage, bravery and love in dedicating your life to your promising call is truly a sacrifice! Thank you for your tireless service,” said Ivy Domogan, Gacod’s former classmate at UC.
Gacod left a grieving wife, an elementary teacher from San Gabriel, La Union, whom he wed in March of last year. Around 6,000 civilians were reported to be displaced due to the gun fight in Maimbung, Sulu. – Ofelia C. Empian