Cebu Daily News, Inquirer, May 25, 2011
The killer sat behind bars in the Tabuelan municipal jail and said he didn’t regret killing his 6-year-old niece and acting like a cannibal.
Efren Matedios, 29, who was arrested at home yesterday, said he was only “helping” the little girl by stopping her from changing into a “manananggal,” a winged figure in Filipino folklore who is half-human and half-monster.
Elestrio hacked and disembowel Lara Mae Concodes last Monday night.
Prior to the crime, he wanted to sleep beside his niece but his mother objected prompting him to maul her.
She escaped and sought for help but when she arrived with some of the roving tanods, she saw him eating a portion of her granddaughter’s internal organ.
They saw Lara’s naked body lying on the floor while her internal organs were placed in a plate and drizzled with salt.
Matedios was naked when police tracked him down in his house in barangay Villahermosa, about 12 kilometers from the town proper.
The death of 6-year-old Lara Mae Concodes, who was stabbed, stripped naked and her internal organs removed and eaten by her uncle on Monday, has horrified the rural town in north Cebu.
Police brought the uncle to a hospital, where doctors will try to find out whether the act of cannibalism is a sign of mental derangement.
“A good man with no vices,” was how some neighbors and relatives described Matedios.
Barangay captain Marian Donasco told Cebu Daily News that they were shocked by the crime because Matedios was a doting uncle.
“He really loved his niece. Until now we are shocked about what happened. We can’t believe Efren did it,” she said.
Matedios told Cebu Daily News he put salt in the girl’s internal organs to kill her immediately because he saw on television once that this was how to kill a “mananaggal.”
He denied he was on drugs or a member of a demonic cult.
The man told police he used a broken jalousie blade to disembowel the girl and ignored her cries.
He said he left the blade under a rock in a cave, but police went to the site, going as deep as 25 feet, without finding it.
The victim’s mother Elizabeth, 28, said that she thinks her only brother is unbalanced and dangerous, but can’t abandon him.
“Wala man ko pinalabi pero pinangga man pud gud ko sa akong manoy,” she said.
And nobody else will help him, she told CDN outside the jail.
Elizabeth brought him flood and clothes but kept her distance.
“I’m afraid he might do something,” she said but said she pitied him.
Elizabeth said that after Monday’s brutal killing she wanted her brother killed but realized later she’s the only family member who can help him.
She said she would leave the fight for justice up to law enforcers and God.
Elizabeth separated from her husband, Lito, a few years ago.
She lived with her grandmother, Pablita and Efren together with her second son, Kent Gabriel, 8. Another 10-year-old son stays with the father in Camotes Island.
Lito was at the funeral wake yesterday.
SPO3 Christopher Sanchez, deputy chief of Tabuelan police station said a murder charge would be filed today.
He said police found one witness who can testify that the uncle ate the little girl’s internal organs.
Lara Mae will be buried at 2 p.m. Today in Tabuelan.
Witness says Matedios was cursed by a witch in their neighborhood
from Candeze R. Mongaya, Jucell Marie P. Cuyos
Barangay Villahermosa councilor Paz Agsoy told Cebu Daily News that neighbors are scared after Efren, whom they described as “a good man with no vices,” admitted he killed and ate the liver of his niece.
Agsoy said that after Lara Mae’s death, a black bat was seen flying over the barangay. Efren was heard telling the bat, “I know who you are. You are the owner of the caimito that I ate.”
Agsoy said that neighbors believe the mayhem began when when Matedios and some neighbors went to fix a tomb a few weeks ago.
On their way to the graveyard they passed by a house whose owner was a reputed witch.
Efren and the others bought some starapple fruit from the lady for a small amount, but Efren happened to step on an orchid, angering the old lady of the house.
Agsoy, recalling Efren’s account, said the lady exclaimed: “Don’t step on that, my boy. You have paid me too little for what you ate.”
Agsoy said old folks in the town proper said that if a human is recruited to become an “ungo” they are required to eat a human being or else be struck by disease.
Neighbors believe Efren was recruited to become an “ungo,” she said.
“Our elders said that the ungo tends to recruit people who are good or don’t like to say bad words,” she said.
Prior to the arrest of Efren, Agsoy said they heard a bang on the roof as if a chicken fell but saw Efren a few moments later naked and with scratches all over his body.
Cebu Daily News, Inquirer