A driver who was filmed hitting a cyclist and drawing a gun on him in a road rage incident in Quezon City has asked the public to be more responsible in sharing videos on social media, saying he feels like a bad person.
William “Willie” Gonzales, a retired police officer, appeared at a press conference on Sunday, August 27, 2023, with Quezon City Police District (QCPD) Director General Nicolas Torre III. He said he regretted his actions, but also claimed that there was more to the story than what was shown in the viral video.
“Ang paki-usap ko po sana… Sana ‘yung mga bloggers maging responsible sila. Hindi nila alam ang puno’t dulo, marami agad magcocomment. Hindi naman nila nakita ‘yung tunay na nangyari, ‘yung umpisa,” Gonzales said. “Kawawa naman mga anak ko, mga kapamilya ko. Parang ang sama-sama kong tao. Hindi naman mangyayari ‘yun kung hindi lang ako dumipensa lang din.”
(I ask you… I hope the bloggers are more responsible. They don’t know the whole story, they comment right away. They didn’t see what really happened, the beginning. My children, my family are pitiful. I feel like a bad person. It wouldn’t have happened if I didn’t defend myself.)
Gonzales said he voluntarily surrendered his gun to the QCPD and that he and the cyclist had settled the matter on the same day of the incident, which happened on August 8 near the boundary of Quezon City and Manila.
The video of the incident, which was posted by lawyer and cyclist Raymond Fortun on August 27, showed Gonzales hitting the helmet of the cyclist before cocking his gun and hurling expletives at him. The scene reportedly unfolded after Gonzales’ car collided with the cyclist.
Fortun asked for help in identifying Gonzales and urged the authorities to take action against him. His post garnered over 184,000 reactions and 150,000 shares as of writing.
Torre said that no criminal charges have been filed against Gonzales as of yet, but anyone can still file a complaint. He added that Gonzales may face an administrative case from the Land Transportation Office (LTO), which could revoke his license to carry a gun.
The LTO issued a show-cause order against Gonzales on Sunday, requiring him to explain his side of the story. LTO Chief Assistant Secretary Vigor Mendoza said they are conducting an investigation into the incident and assured the public of their swift action.
“Let us help together to make all our roads safe by running after abusive motorists, nagkakaroon ng lakas ng loob ang mga abusado sa kalsada kapag walang nagrereklamo, hindi sila nahuhuli at hindi sila napaparusahan,” Mendoza said.
(Let us help together to make all our roads safe by running after abusive motorists, abusers on the road become emboldened when no one complains, they are not caught and they are not punished.)