The LTO’s verdict is out for the ex-cop who brandished and cocked a gun at a bicyclist. Following the viral spread of a video online, the issuing of summons, a no-show of the said ex-cop, and numerous other meetings and discussions with individuals involved, the Land Transportation Office has decided to revoke the Driver’s License of Wilfredo Gonzales, the gun-toting individual in the roadside altercation. The revocation is for a period of two (2) years.
LTO revokes gun-toting ex-cop’s Driver’s License for 2 years
In an incident that occurred on August 8, 2023, 63-year-old Wilfredo Gonzales was caught on video getting into an argument with a bicyclist. Gonzales was seen hitting the man on the bicycle and took out and cocked a gun seconds later. In an LTO dated September 5, the LTO found Gonzales liable to four traffic violations, one of which includes a violation of Section 27 (Improper Person to Operate Motor Vehicles) of the Republic Act 4136, or the Land Transportation and Traffic Code. These collective findings resulted in the revocation of Gonzales’ non-professional driver’s license for two (2) years.
The LTO Resolution signed by LTO-National Capital Region director Roque Verzosa III and approved by Mendoza reads as follows:
“Respondent-driver’s acts of having no due diligence in driving, which caused the incident that resulted in the destruction of the property of the victim, is considered unacceptable behavior of a driver. Taken as a whole, his actions are tantamount to the acts of an Improper Person to Operate a Motor Vehicle, which is punishable under Section 27 (a) of R.A. No. 4136.
Respondent GONZALES is hereby declared as an Improper Person to Operate Motor Vehicles (Sec.27(a) of R.A. No. 4136). Hence, his Driver’s License which is valid until 07/08/2024, is hereby ordered REVOKED and he is DISQUALIFIED from securing a driver’s license and driving a motor vehicle for a period of two (2) years from issuance of this Resolution.”
In a statement, LTO Chief Vigor Mendoza II said “the acts of the former (Gonzales) undeniably show that he abused such privilege and failed to comply with the conduct necessary for the continued possession and enjoyment of the said privilege.”
“The grant of a license to drive is a privilege that carries with it important duties and responsibilities, paramount of which is the respect and obedience by its holder to traffic laws and regulations, and to the authorities charged with its enforcement. It is also presumed that the necessary knowledge and skills are possessed by its holder considering the respondent driver has undergone and passed the required competencies,” Mendoza also added.
A Show Cause Order was issued asking Gonzales to appear in front of authorities, however, he was represented by his son instead. Gonzales’ son surrendered his father’s LTO Driver’s License and likewise did not have any notarized affidavit which prompted the LTO to submit the case for resolution.
Other violations of Gonzales included a violation of Disregarding Traffic Sign, of which the LTO Resolution stated that Gonzales’ move to encroach into a bicycle lane and block the driver as shown in the video made him liable for a fine of PHP 1,000. For Obstruction of Traffic, Gonzales was fined PHP 1,000 after it was established that his actions resulted in the restriction of movement of vehicles in the area where the incident occurred. As for Reckless Driving, Gonzales was fined PHP 2,000 as “there is substantial evidence that the respondent-driver is administratively liable for reckless driving” when he suddenly cut across the lane of the incoming cyclist.
“Magsilbing aral sana ito sa lahat ng ating mga kababayan na walang mabuting naidudulot ang init ng ulo sa daan. Kaya pinapayuhan natin ang lahat ng motorista na kontrolin ang galit dahil ikaw din ang talo dito [May this serve as a lesson to everyone that no good will come of a hot head on the road. We advise all motorists to control their anger because you will lose],” said Mendoza.
Justice has been served, albeit to the tune of monetary fines and a 2-year Driver’s License revocation. Do you think this was just? Is it but a slap on the hand and will it only be a 2-year window wherein someone who was clearly in the wrong will have to avoid the driver’s seat but return after the prescription period and possibly do the same thing again? Sincerely, we hope not.
There is no space for behavior like this on the road, or anywhere, for that matter. No government post whether present or past, and no firearm is reason enough to engage in fisticuffs or intimidate anyone. We won’t even proceed to bashing, but we are interested in your thoughts on this matter.
Two years too quick? Is it too short? Is it right? Should it have been a permanent revocation? What do you think?