At about 4:10 a.m. John Albert Laylo and his mother were in their Uber stopped at a red light near the University of Pennsylvania when a black car opened fire on them out of nowhere. Apparently the two had just left a relative’s apartment in the city.
Following the incident, both individuals were rushed to the nearest hospital where Laylo was pronounced dead. On the other hand, his mother, Leah was treated for injuries sustained from glass shattering during the shooting. Philippine Consul General Elmer Cato met with her at the hospital.
“I said a prayer for [Laylo] and assured him that we will do everything we can to bring him home as soon as possible,” Cato said on Twitter following the incident.
Cato also mentioned that Laylo was killed in a “random shooting incident.”
“We ask kababayan to join us in praying for the eternal repose of his soul,” Cato said in a separate statement. “We call on authorities to bring the perpetrator of this crime to justice.”
Kababayan is a Filipino term which roughly translates to “fellow countrymen.”
AP News reported that police have not specified if the Uber driver was also injured in the attack or if the attack was intentionally meant to be targeting the government official. Surveillance footage of the shooting is being collected and the case is currently being investigated by homicide detectives.
CBS Philly shared that the shooter’s identity nor his motive have been revealed.
Laylo was said to have worked on the staff of Filipino Senator Leila de Lima in Manila between 2016-2018 prior to his graduate school career.
“Too many guns,” said Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney in a statement to WPVI-TV. “Doesn’t matter if it’s a tourist from the Philippines or one of our native-born Philadelphians, there are too many damn guns in Pennsylvania and Philadelphia.”
Data released by City Controller Rebbecca Rhynhart reveals that there have already been over 208 fatal shootings and 836 non-fatal shootings in the city of Philadelphia this year. Over 86% of the shootings have involved men and 78% of them were between the ages of 18 and 45.
“In an effort to combat surging violence and a shortage of officers, a joint public safety program launched earlier this month between the Philadelphia Police Department and the Pennsylvania State Police to bolster the presence of law enforcement in areas of the city hit the hardest by crime,” reports Fox News.
The Philadelphia State Police have uncovered shocking 2021 statistics: 78% of homicides, 42% of robberies, and 25% of aggravated assaults have involved a firearm.