Thu, 06 Jan 2000

Random shooting leaves grieving mother shocked

JAKARTA (JP): Yoto Suwarno, a resident of Tawangsari district, Sukohardjo regency in Central Java received a heavy blow on Monday night on news that her son was in a critical condition due to a random shooting incident.

"Warini, my daughter-in-law who stays with me, came to me crying. Warini said that her husband ... my son Widodo, had been shot on Sunday evening and that he was in a serious condition in a hospital in Jakarta," she told reporters at the intensive care unit of the Mediros hospital in Kelapa Gading, North Jakarta, while holding the hand of her bedridden son.

"I asked her why? She said she didn't know. She also told me that my son was not the one at fault and that he had done nothing wrong."

"I asked her if he had not done anything, how come he was shot? He must have done something. Warini could not answer me."

The elderly woman, who can barely speak Bahasa Indonesia, was forced to borrow money from neighbors and had to leave her grandson with relatives and take the five-months pregnant Warini with her on buses until she reached Jakarta to see her son.

"I had not been there five minutes when Sri Mulyadi (Warini's brother-in-law who stays with Widodo in Jakarta) told me that the medicines were costing nearly Rp 500,000 (US$71.40) a day, and that an operation on my son had cost Rp 15 million," the soft- spoken lady said.

A doctor at the hospital, Jenadi, later told reporters that a bullet had exited Widodo's stomach on the left side, through an ulcer, the small and large intestines and the urinary duct. The bullet left a hole in the right side of Widodo's back.

Yoto said that her son had been a newspaper seller for 12 years.

"He's just an ordinary newspaper seller who sends me less than Rp 100,000 per month?, to feed myself, his wife and son. How can I afford all this?" she asked, referring to the medical costs.

"I don't know who shot my son ... Why was he shot?"

Widodo was outside the Seratus Satu Malam restaurant on Sunday night when I Gusti Ketut Putra, an adjutant of national military police chief Maj. Gen. Djasrie Marin, came rushing out with a traffic police officer, First Sgt. Fikri Zakaria, 25.

The soldier and police officer fought as Widodo stood nearby. Before Widodo knew it, bullets were flying everywhere.

Hospital bills

Fikri died from three bullets wounds to his chest and stomach. Widodo, and another bystander, Arief, were seriously injured by bullets during the incident.

Ketut was arrested and detained at the Jakarta Military Garrison following the incident, while seven police officers directly involved in the case have been handed over by the Jakarta Police to the Jakarta military police headquarters for questioning.

Sri Mulyadi told reporters that his friend Marzuki had visited the military police to meet with Djasrie over the matter.

"He was told that Djasrie had gone on a Umroh (minor haj pilgrimage)," Sri said.

Head of Jakarta Military Garrison Brig. Gen. Tubagus Hasanuddin, who visited Widodo on Wednesday, said that the garrison would demand that all the commanders of the concerned parties involved in the shooting pay for Widodo's hospital bills.

"This shooting was carried out by a crazy man. A very stupid soldier. Whatever the reason, this should not have happened," Tubagus told reporters at the hospital.

A source at North Jakarta Police Headquarters said Fikri apprehended Ketut, his friend Billy and Anisah, while the latter were in possession of shabu-shabu (crystal methamphetamine) at a house in the Pulomas housing complex on New Year's Eve.

Fikri tried to blackmail Billy, Anisah and Ketut. Ketut confronted Fikri in the Seribu Satu Malam restaurant on Jl. Boulevard, on Sunday evening, leading to a heated verbal exchange.

Ketut then dragged Fikri outside, where Fikri was shot three times.

Tubagus told reporters that the friendship between Billy and Ketut went back to when Ketut had just been appointed as an adjutant of Djasrie.

"They knew each other from 1996. I am still trying to find out whether Ketut was really a backer of Billy ... and whether Billy really is a drug dealer or just a user," Tubagus said.

Tubagus said that from what he knew, when the drug bust was made, Ketut was in the toilet. Traffic police officer Fikri, who during the bust claimed to be Second Lt. Iwan Syah, took Billy and Anisah aside, to blackmail them, Tubagus said.

"Ketut was told not to interfere by Fikri, who then called himself Iwan Syah," Tubagus said. Ketut then went to look for "Iwan at the Jakarta Police".

"There was no Iwan. Ketut wasted no time tracking down Fikri in the restaurant, then the fight began and Ketut shot him."

"We are also investigating how many drug users or dealers this traffic police officer has made money from." (ylt)