Bounty vs Nicole's shooter hiked

Posted at 01/04/13 5:55 PM

MANILA, Philippines -- Valenzuela City Mayor Sherwin Gatchalian is offering P200,000 to anyone who can give information that would lead to the arrest of the suspect in the shooting of seven-year-old Stephanie Nicole Ella.

This puts the total reward money to P400,000, as Caloocan City Mayor Enrico Echiverri offered on Wednesday a P200,000-bounty.

The Caloocan police said on Friday they now have a list of 32 owners of licensed .45-caliber pistols living near the victim's residence.

Senior Supt. Rimas Calixto, Caloocan police chief, said they will check the records of these individuals in Camp Crame for possible identification of the suspect who killed Stephanie Nicole.

Calixto said part of the process of investigation is the matching of the slug taken from the victim's head to the firearms of the 32 gun owners.

The results of the matching are expected to be released today or tomorrow.

Stephanie Nicole was hit by a stray bullet in the head while she and her family were watching fireworks outside their house in Caloocan on New Year's Eve.

She passed away at 2:26 p.m. on January 2. Doctors at the East Avenue Medical Center said she suffered cardiac arrests after slipping into a coma while inside the hospital.

She will be laid to rest on January 12 at the Sanctuario de Paz in Bulacan, said her father, Jay Ella. -- With reports from Maan Macapagal, ABS-CBN News; and Johnson Manabat, dzMM