The hostage crisis at the jail in San Jose, Antique, ended early Friday after hours of negotiations between authorities and two inmates who shot dead a jailguard and held captive 171 fellow detainees.

The “standoff” ended 12 a.m. as the suspects surrendered with their weapons, PNP spokesman Chief Supt. Agrimero Cruz said.

Christopher Fernando, who is accused of murder, shot dead JO2 Romer Saquibal with a caliber-.38 revolver around 5:30 p.m. while he and other inmates at the jail along Marina st., Brgy. 4, were being gathered for dinner.

While Fernando returned to the cells bringing Saquibal’s caliber-.45 pistol, Lloyd Francisco, another inmate, used a hand grenade to hold hostage the 171 other detainees.

Government officials of Antique and San Jose activated a crisis management committee to address the situation.

Members of the Antique Provincial Police’s Special Weapons and Tactics team were deployed in “strategic areas” near the jail while similar teams from Iloilo province were told to be ready to augment the Antique police. (John Roson)

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