The acting chief of the San Juan City police’s equivalent of the Special Weapons and Tactics (Swat) team drowned in a diving accident in Mabini, Batangas, Sunday morning, police said.

Chief Insp. Elpidio Duenas, Batangas Provincial Police spokesman, identified the fatality as Senior Insp. Renato Samson, 36.

Samson is the current commander of the San Juan City Police Station 7 and officer-in-charge of the Special Reaction Unit (SRU), according to the city police’s official website.

Insp. Florintino Buenafe, deputy chief of the Mabini Police, said the incident occurred around 9 a.m. while Samson and seven other policemen were scuba diving in waters off Brgy. Ligaya.

“According sa kanyang (Samson) mga kasama na pulis din, sumabit ang kanyang diving gear sa tali ng kanilang bouya. Nagte-training daw sila on search and rescue. About 20 meters deep sila noon,” Buenafe said.

Samson’s companions eventually managed to pull him out of the water and brought him to the Mabini General Hospital, but he was declared dead upon arrival by the attending physician Dr. Jigger Gilera, Duenas said. (John Roson)

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