A 28-year-old man has died after he was allegedly forced to do 300 squat-like exercises by police as punishment for violating Covid-19 quarantine rules in the Philippines.
Darren Manaog Peñaredondo, 28, was out after 6 p.m. April 1 buying drinking water in his city of General Trias, Cavite, when he was reportedly caught by authorities. The Cavite province currently has a strict curfew in place from 6 p.m to 5 a.m.
Adrian Lucena, the victim’s relative, said in a Facebook post that Mr. Penaredondo and others found violating the curfew were told to do 100 squat-like exercises at a shopping plaza. He said authorities allegedly told them they would have to repeat the exercises if they were not in sync and the group ended up doing the exercise 300 times.
After completing the grueling punishment, Peñaredondo reportedly returned home, with help of the other curfew violators, around 8 a.m the following morning.
Mr Penaredondo’s partner Reichelyn Balce told local news outlet Rappler that he was in obvious pain and struggled to walk the entire time when he got home.
She said Mr Penaredondo struggled to move by himself the next day because of fatigue. She said he struggled to walk the entire day and was just crawling.
“That whole day, he struggled to walk, he was just crawling on the floor just to get up,” Balce said. “But I did not take that seriously because he said his knees and thighs were aching, as was his body.”
Peñaredondo suffered a seizure later in the evening and despite being briefly revived, he passed away around 10 p.m.
Following Peñaredondo’s death, police chief of General Trias city, Marlo Solero said there is no physical punishment for quarantine violators. He said they are given lectures and sometimes made to do community service, like picking up litter.
The police chief said they have photos to prove the victim wasn’t physically hurt, according to CNN Philippines. He said their investigation showed that none of the staff on duty that night ordered the violators to exercise. “We released him in good physical condition.”
General Trias city mayor Ony Ferrer said in a statement that he has ordered the chief of police to conduct a fair investigation.
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