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28-year-old dies after being “forced to do 300 squats for breaking anticovid restrictions”

Darren Penaredondo, 28, was seen on Friday, April 2 after he was allegedly forced to do 300 squats as punishment for violating the COVID-19 curfew in the Philippines. His wife, Reichelyn, who recorded the video and gave it to the media for publication, was unaware of the seriousness of his condition, so that at one point he is heard laughing as he tells her: “try to stand up one one more time. Where are you going? You cannot go up the stairs, you will fall. Watch out”. Darren collapsed later that night and was declared dead the next day, as the doctors were unable to do anything. Now the police are investigating the death. Local police allegedly captured 28-year-old Darren Penaredondo while trying to buy a bottle of water at a grocery store on April 1, shortly after the 6 p.m. curfew enforced at the Cavite province, Philippines. They took the worker to the municipal council along with other people who had violated the rules of confinement, where they were forced to do bouncing squats, something that apparently has become a common punishment in the country during the restrictions for COVID-19. The exercise is a mix between a squat and a push-up. The guards did not allow the group to leave until they completed 100 repetitions of the exercise at a time. Even though they did 100 reps, the guards said they hadn’t done them correctly, so the whole group was forced to start over from the beginning, so they ended up doing three sets, a total of 300 squats. Darren spent the entire night under strenuous punishment and was only able to return home in the early hours of the morning on April 2. A colleague who had also violated the rules of confinement helped him get home because he could barely walk. Waiting for him was his worried wife, Reichelyn Balce, who had been awake all night. Reichelyn said Darren found it difficult to walk and could only crawl due to fatigue, compounded by thirst and hunger. He collapsed later that night and died the next day. His devastated wife recounted: “When he got home on Friday around 8 in the morning, he was helped by a colleague who had also violated the lockdown and had been arrested along with him. I asked him if he had been beaten and even though he just smiled, it was obvious that he was in pain. Throughout that day, he tried to walk, but could only crawl on the ground to get up. However, I did not take it seriously because he said that his knees and thighs hurt, as well as his body. The grieving wife explained that after resting for several hours, Darren began to have seizures and even lost consciousness. They were able to revive him, but he finally died on April 3. She added: “When he asked me to help him urinate, he started to convulse. He had seizures and his face turned purple. Her heart stopped beating. I asked our neighbors to do a CPR, then the heartbeat returned. ” The head of the village of Tejero, Rodolfo Cruz Jr, confirmed that the man was one of the people who had been arrested for violating the confinement on April 1, but that same night he was transferred into the custody of the police of the city of General Trias. However, General Trias Police Chief, Police Lieutenant Colonel Marlo Nillo Solero, denied having punished the offenders. He said, “As for the squat claims, we don’t apply that punishment, we just lecture them.” The Mayor General of General Trias, Antonio Ferrer, said he had already contacted Darren’s family to offer his help while the investigation is ongoing. “I contacted his family to offer my condolences and assistance. We want to know what really happened, for the good of the family, “he said.

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