The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) said it has provided psychological support for the 12-year-old daughter of the police officer who shot dead two civilians in Tarlac on Dec. 20.
“The local government unit of Gerona in Tarlac and the DSWD in Central Luzon have arranged a psychosocial intervention yesterday (Dec. 22) for the minors,” DSWD spokesperson Irene Dumlao told the Philippine News Agency in a Viber message.
A resident psychologist at the Tarlac Provincial Hospital conducted the psychological intervention.
Dumlao said DSWD and the Council for the Welfare of Children (CWC) have appealed to the public to spare the kid from condemnation and cyberbullying.
In a radio interview on Tuesday, Dumlao said the girl was at a stage of her life where she still has to learn to control her emotional impulses.
“The child’s behavior may have infuriated people, having spewed unintended words during the incident’s filming. However, the child’s cognitive ability to control emotional impulse and regulate emotions are still under development at the early stage of her childhood,” CWC said in a statement.
In a separate message, CWC officer John Principio said there is ongoing psychosocial assessment for the other minor who witnessed the crime.
“The other minor in the scene is a relative of the victims. Yesterday, dinala na ang (anak) ng perpetrator sa psychiatrist for evaluation. Today naman ang schedule ng other minor. Both of them are responding properly in the interviews by the social workers (Yesterday, the child of the perpetrator was scheduled for an evaluation with a psychiatrist. Today, we have arranged for the other minor),” he said.
Principio said that after the evaluation, they would come up with appropriate actions to follow up the intervention.
Dumlao, meanwhile, said DSWD also conducted an assessment in Paniqui, the scene of the crime, to provide psychosocial support to the residents in the neighborhood.
She added the agency also looks over their welfare.
“It is important that they also recover [and be rehabilitated] from the incident,” she said.
Florentino Gregorio, widower, and father of the victims, also appealed to the public to stop insulting the girl on social media.
He said the girl’s parents were to blame for how she reacted during the altercation between the Gregorios and the policeman.
Police Master Sgt. Jonel Nuezca admitted his fault to the Paniqui Municipal Police Station.
He is held in a detention cell while awaiting a commitment order. (PNA)