ADD VIDEO: Filipino man, 28, dies after ‘being forced to do 300 squats for breaking Covid-19 restrictions’

Video: (Darren Penaredondo, 28, is seen on Friday April 2 after doing 300 squats as a punishment for breaking a Covid-19 curfew in the Philippines. His wife, Reichelyn, who recorded the video and supplied the video today, was unaware of the seriousness of his condition and is heard laughing while saying to him ‘try to stand up one more time. Where are you going? You can’t go upstairs, you’ll fall. Take care.’

Video: (Covid-19 curfew violaters doing the same exercise that allegedly killed Darren Penaredondo)

Pictures: FTP

A Filipino man died after allegedly being forced to do 300 squats as a punishment for breaking a Covid-19 lockdown curfew.

Darren Penaredondo, 28, was said to have been caught by village guards trying to buy a bottle of drinking water from a grocery store on April 1 shortly after the 6pm curfew in Cavite province.

The worker was taken and held in front of the municipal hall together with other quarantine violators where they were made to do pump squats – something that has become a common form of punishment in the country during Covid-19 restrictions. The exercise is a cross between a squat and a push-up.

The entire group was not allowed to leave until they had completed 100 rounds of the exercise in sync. If they completed 100 but officers said they had not done them correctly, the whole group was forced to start again from the beginning, so they ended up doing three sets – a total of 300.

Darren spent the night doing the grueling punishment and was only able to go home in the early hours of the morning on April 2.

A fellow quarantine violator assisted him until he reached home as he could barely walk where his worried wife Reichelyn Balce had been up all night waiting for him.

Reichelyn said Darren struggled to walk and could only crawl on the floor because of fatigue – exacerbated by thirst and hunger. He collapsed later that evening and died the next day.

His devastated wife said: ‘When he came home on Friday, around 8 am, he was assisted by his fellow quarantine violator who was arrested with him in the mobile. I asked if he was beaten up, he just smiled but it was obvious he was in pain.

‘That whole day, he struggled to walk, he was just crawling on the floor just to get up. But I did not take that seriously because he said his knees and thighs were aching, as was his body.’

The grieving wife said that after hours of resting, Darren started having seizures and even lost consciousness. He was revived but eventually died on Aptil 3.

She added: ‘When he asked for help when he was going to pee, he started to have seizures. He convulsed and his face turned violet. His heart stopped beating. I asked our neighbors to give him CPR, afterwards his heartbeat returned.’

Tejero village chief Rodolfo Cruz Jr confirmed that the man was one of the quarantine violators held on April 1 but he was transferred to the General Trias police officers custody that same night.

However, General Trias police chief Police Lieutenant Colonel Marlo Nillo Solero denied giving the punishment to violators.

He said: ‘As to the claims of pumping, we don’t give such punishment. Instead, we conduct lectures.’

General Trias Mayor Antonio Ferrer said he was already in contact with Darren’s family to offer assistance while the investigation is ongoing.

He said: ‘I personally contacted his family to offer my condolences and assistance. We want to know what really happened for the family’s sake.’