By Nancy Carvajal
Investigators are now looking for the organizer of the party attended by the 23-year-old Philippine Airlines Express (PAL Express) flight attendant Christine Dacera, who was found dead at a hotel on New Year.
A source familiar with the investigation described the New Year’s Eve party at the City Garden Hotel in Makati as “unusual.”
“We are now looking for the organizer who can shed light on what happened. We want to know how Dacera ended up in the empty bath tub with signs of sexual assault,” the source said.
Initial investigation showed that 11 men were with Dacera at the party, based on the hotel’s surveillance camera footage.
Dacera’s companions, most of whom were flight attendants, were openly gay, investigators said.
Politiko’s source said the suspects in Dacera’s case were known to the victim.
At least three of Dacera’s companions reportedly brought her to the hospital after she was found unconscious in an empty bath tub of the hotel room where she was staying.
Hotel CCTV footage clearly showed the faces of those seen with her entering the room, the source said.
Makati Police had announced they have arrested three suspects in connection with the death and suspected sexual assault of Dacera, but the source said no arrest actually took place.
“They were the ones who brought her to the hospital, but were promptly detained by the police and charged them with homicide,’’ the source added.
Doctors pronounced the victim dead on arrival at around 3:00 am of January 1.
Detained by the police as suspects John Pascual Dela Serna III, 27, Rommel Daluro Galido, 29, and John Paul Reyes Halili, 25.
Meanwhile, Justice Menardo Guevarra told reporters that a hold order by the Bureau of Immigration will be issued against those who have not been detained by authorities as soon as cases against them will be filed before the prosecutor’s office.
Sources from the National Bureau of Investigation also told Politiko.Ph that a parallel investigation will be conducted by the bureau’s Death Investigation Division.
“As courtesy to the police investigation, the NBI will just be a parallel probe, but if permitted by the family, we would like to conduct an independent autopsy of the victim,’’ the source added.
The source added that although Dacera’s death was listed by the doctors as due to ruptured aortic aneurysm, the cause of lacerations, bruises contusions and scratches on her arms and legs is still vague.