The victim was identified as Joselito 'Cocoy' Valencia Reynes, 62 years old, who also served as a councilor for three terms prior to being the campaign manager of mayor-elect Joel Quiño in the May elections.
Although Quiño was earlier proclaimed winner by the Commission on Elections (Comelec), he has not been able to sit as mayor as this has been held due to a protest filed by defeated reelectionist candidate Ritchie Wagas.
In fact, Pedro Noval, regional director of the Department of Interior and Local Government-7, now sits as mayor of the town on an acting capacity until this stand off shall be resolved.
Reynes was with Quiño at the wake of one of their townmates before he was shot dead in barangay Estaca, which is about 25 kilometers north of Cebu City.
Reynes, who was shot while still inside his car, sustained wounds on his heart, left lung and left shoulder.
He was mayor of the town from 1980 to 1986.
After serving for three terms as councilor from 2001 to 2010, he managed Quiño's campaign and also served as the latter's spokesman amidst the tension brought about by the standoff.
Police investigators learned that Reynes and Quiño parted ways around 11 p.m. and while the mayor-elect went straight home, the former reportedly stopped his car, a red Hyundai Accent, near a store along the highway.
It was at this point when two men riding in tandem on a motorcycle came abreast and the back rider pulled out a gun then fired thrice even before Reynes could get out of his vehicle.
Town policemen led by SPO4 Florencio Balila rushed to scene and a passing ambulance was hailed to take the victim to the nearby Danao City General Hospital.
From there, he was brought to a hospital in Cebu City where he was declared dead on arrival.
Police recovered three empty 9 mm shells at the crime scene.
Sr. Supt. Erson Digal, Director of Cebu Provincial Police Office (CPPO), said that they are looking into the possibility that the killing may have been due to politics or a personal grudge.
The town's elected officials in the last election headed by Quiño were barred from sitting after the Comelec 2nd Division ordered the suspension of the proclamation pending resolution of the election protest of former mayor Wagas.
Quiño, when asked for comment said that the different angles must be considered.
Quiño said that he has also received information about threats to his life prior to the killing of Reynes. He added that some of his supporters also complained that their houses were strafed.
Quiño, however, called for calm to prevail despite the threats.
He said that it was Reynes, who served as his main man handling the protest of the camp of Wagas.
"Iya pa ko ana kanunay ingnan na ayaw kumpiyansa, ayaw'g lakaw kung ikaw ra usa. Sa sige niya ug tan-aw diri nako, wa na siya kabantay sa iyang kaugalingon," Quiño lamented.
He added, "Tagaan lang nila og pagtagad ang among lungsod kay miabot na ang akong gikahadlukan na naa na'y nabuhi na nakalas."
Chief Supt. Lani-O Nerez, Police Regional Office-7 Director, ordered Digal to detail at least two police security escorts to Quiño considering the threat to his life.
Digal has ordered the head of the Provincial Investigation and Detective Management Branch, Sr. Insp. Reuben Cuizon, to help the Compostela Police in the investigation and gather more witnesses.
The Criminal Investigation and Detection Group is also helping in the investigation, Digal said.
Meanwhile, Dr. Nestor Sator of the PNP Crime Laboratory, who conducted the autopsy at St. Peter Memorial Chapels, said Reynes had fatal gunshot wounds on his heart, left lung.