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PARRICIDE That on or about 10:30 in the evening more or less, of October 9,


1998, at Gusa, Cagayan de Oro City, Philippines, and within the
PEOPLE v. JUMAWAN jurisdiction of this Honorable Court, the above-named accused
by means of force upon person did then and there wilfully,
Republic of the Philippines unlawfully and feloniously have carnal knowledge with the
SUPREME COURT private complainant, her [sic] wife, against the latter[']s will.
Baguio City
Contrary to and in Violation of R.A. 8353, the Anti-Rape Law of
FIRST DIVISION 1997.

G.R. No. 187495 April 21, 2014 Meanwhile the Information in Criminal Case No. 99-669 reads:

PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, Plaintiff-Appellee, That on or about 10:30 in the evening more or less, of October
vs. 10, 1998, at Gusa, Cagayan de Oro City, Philippines, and within
EDGAR JUMAWAN, Accused-Appellant. the jurisdiction of this Honorable Court, the above-named
accused by means of force upon person did then and there
wilfully, unlawfully and feloniously have carnal knowledge with
DECISION
the private complainant, her [sic] wife, against the latter's will.

"Among the duties assumed by the husband are his duties to


Contrary to and in Violation of R.A. 8353, the Anti-Rape Law of
love, cherish and protect his wife, to give her a home, to provide
1997.
her with the comforts and the necessities of life within his means,
to treat her kindly and not cruelly or inhumanely. He is bound to
honor her x x x; it is his duty not only to maintain and support The accused-appellant was arrested upon a warrant issued on
her, but also to protect her from oppression and wrong."1 July 21, 1999.11 On August 18, 1999, the accused-appellant filed
a Motion for Reinvestigation,12 which was denied by the trial
court in an Order13 dated August 19, 1999. On even date, the
REYES, J.:
accused-appellant was arraigned and he entered a plea of not
guilty to both charges.14
Husbands do not have property rights over their wives' bodies.
Sexual intercourse, albeit within the realm of marriage, if not
On January 10, 2000, the prosecution filed a Motion to Admit
consensual, is rape. This is the clear State policy expressly
Amended Information15 averring that the name of the private
legislated in Section 266-A of the Revised Penal Code (RPC), as
complainant was omitted in the original informations for rape.
amended by Republic Act (R.A.) No. 8353 or the Anti-Rape Law
The motion also stated that KKK, thru a Supplemental Affidavit
of 1997.
dated November 15, 1999,16 attested that the true dates of
commission of the crime are October 16, 1998 and October 1 7,
The Case
1998 thereby modifying the dates stated in her previous
complaint-affidavit. The motion was granted on January 18,
This is an automatic review 2 of the Decision3 dated July 9, 2008 2000.17 Accordingly, the criminal informations were amended as
of the Court of Appeals (CA) in CA-G.R. CR-HC No. 00353, follows:
which affirmed the Judgment4 dated April 1, 2002 of the Regional
Trial Court (RTC) of Cagayan de Oro City, Branch 19, in Criminal
Criminal Case No. 99-668:
Case Nos. 99-668 and 99-669 convicting him to suffer the
penalty of reclusion perpetua for each count.
That on or about October 16, 1998 at Gusa, Cagayan de Oro
City, Philippines, and within the jurisdiction of this Honorable
The Facts
Court, the above-named accused by means of force upon
person did then and there wilfully, unlawfully and feloniously
Accused-appellant and his wife, KKK,5 were married on October have carnal knowledge with the private complainant, his wife,
18, 1975. They Ii ved together since then and raised their four (4) [KKK], against the latter's will.
children6 as they put up several businesses over the years.
Contrary to and in violation of R.A. 8353, the Anti-Rape Law of
On February 19, 1999, KKK executed a Complaint- 1997.18
Affidavit,7 alleging that her husband, the accused-appellant,
raped her at 3 :00 a.m. of December 3, 1998 at their residence in
Criminal Case No. 99-669:
Phase 2, Villa Ernesto, Gusa, Cagayan de Oro City, and that on
December 12, 1998, the accused-appellant boxed her shoulder
That on or about October 17, 1998 at Gusa, Cagayan de Oro
for refusing to have sex with him.
City, Philippines, and within the jurisdiction of this Honorable
Court, the above-named accused by means of force upon
On June 11, 1999, the Office of the City Prosecutor of Cagayan
person did then and there wilfully, unlawfully and feloniously
de Oro City issued a Joint Resolution, 8 finding probable cause
have carnal knowledge with the private complainant, his wife,
for grave threats, less serious physical injuries and rape and
[KKK], against the latter's will.
recommending that the appropriate criminal information be filed
against the accused-appellant.
Contrary to and in violation of R.A. 8353, the Anti-Rape Law of
1997.19
On July 16, 1999, two Informations for rape were filed before the
RTC respectively docketed as Criminal Case No. 99-6689 and
The accused-appellant was thereafter re-arraigned. He
Criminal Case No. 99-669.10 The Information in Criminal Case
maintained his not guilty plea to both indictments and a joint trial
No. 99-668 charged the accused-appellant as follows:
of the two cases forthwith ensued.
2

Version of the prosecution accused-appellant fetched KKK and bid her to come with him to
their conjugal bedroom in the third floor of the house. KKK
The prosecution's theory was anchored on the testimonies of complied.35
KKK, and her daughters MMM and 000, which, together with
pertinent physical evidence, depicted the following events: Once in the bedroom, KKK changed into a daster and fixed the
matrimonial bed but she did not lie thereon with the accused-
KKK met the accused-appellant at the farm of her parents where appellant and instead, rested separately in a cot near the bed.
his father was one of the laborers. They got married after a year Her reclusive behavior prompted him to ask angrily: "[W]hy are
of courtship.20 When their first child, MMM, was born, KKK and you lying on the c{o]t[?]", and to instantaneously order: "You
the accused-appellant put up a sari-sari store.21 Later on, they transfer here [to] our bed."36
engaged in several other businesses -trucking, rice mill and
hardware. KKK managed the businesses except for the rice mill, KKK insisted to stay on the cot and explained that she had
which, ideally, was under the accused-appellant's supervision headache and abdominal pain due to her forthcoming
with the help of a trusted employee. In reality, however, he menstruation. Her reasons did not appease him and he got
merely assisted in the rice mill business by occasionally driving angrier. He rose from the bed, lifted the cot and threw it against
one of the trucks to haul goods.22 the wall causing KKK to fall on the floor. Terrified, KKK stood up
from where she fell, took her pillow and transferred to the bed.37
Accused-appellant's keenness to make the businesses flourish
was not as fervent as KKK's dedication. Even the daughters The accused-appellant then lay beside KKK and not before long,
observed the disproportionate labors of their parents.23 He would expressed his desire to copulate with her by tapping his fingers
drive the trucks sometimes but KKK was the one who actively on her lap. She politely declined by warding off his hand and
managed the businesses.24 reiterating that she was not feeling well.38

She wanted to provide a comfortable life for their children; he, on The accused-appellant again asserted his sexual yearning and
the other hand, did not acquiesce with that objective.25 when KKK tried to resist by holding on to her panties, he pulled
them down so forcefully they tore on the sides. 39 KKK stayed
In 1994, KKK and the accused-appellant bought a lot and built a defiant by refusing to bend her legs.40
house in Villa Ernesto, Gusa, Cagayan de Oro City.26 Three of
the children transferred residence therein while KKK, the The accused-appellant then raised KKK's daster,41 stretched her
accused-appellant and one of their sons stayed in Dangcagan, legs apart and rested his own legs on them. She tried to wrestle
Bukidnon. She shuttled between the two places regularly and him away but he held her hands and succeeded in penetrating
sometimes he accompanied her.27 In 1998, KKK stayed in Gusa, her. As he was carrying out his carnal desires, KKK continued to
Cagayan De Oro City most of the days of the week. 28 On protest by desperately shouting: "[D]on 't do that to me because
Wednesdays, she went to Dangcagan, Bukidnon to procure I'm not feeling well."42
supplies for the family store and then returned to Cagayan de
Oro City on the same day.29 With a concrete wall on one side and a mere wooden partition on
the other enclosing the spouses' bedroom,43KKK's pleas were
Conjugal intimacy did not really cause marital problems between audible in the children's bedroom where MMM lay awake.
KKK and the accused-appellant. It was, in fact, both frequent
and fulfilling. He treated her well and she, of course, responded Upon hearing her mother crying and hysterically shouting:
with equal degree of enthusiasm.30However, in 1997, he started "Eddie, don't do that to me, have pity on me,"44 MMM woke up
to be brutal in bed. He would immediately remove her panties 000 who prodded her to go to their parents' room. 45 MMM
and, sans any foreplay, insert her penis in her vagina. His hurriedly climbed upstairs, vigorously knocked on the door of her
abridged method of lovemaking was physically painful for her so parents' bedroom and inquired: "Pa, why is it that Mama is
she would resist his sexual ambush but he would threaten her crying?"46 The accused-appellant then quickly put on his briefs
into submission.31 and shirt, partly opened the door and said: "[D]on 't interfere
because this is a family trouble," before closing it again. 47 Since
In 1998, KKK and the accused-appellant started quarrelling she heard her mother continue to cry, MMM ignored his father's
usually upon his complaint that she failed to attend to him. She admonition, knocked at the bedroom door again, and then kicked
was preoccupied with financial problems in their businesses and it.48 A furious accused-appellant opened the door wider and
a bank loan. He wanted KKK to stay at home because "a woman rebuked MMM once more: "Don't interfere us. Go downstairs
must stay in the house and only good in bed (sic) x x x." She because this is family trouble!" Upon seeing KKK crouching and
disobeyed his wishes and focused on her goal of providing a crying on top of the bed, MMM boldly entered the room,
good future for the children.32 approached her mother and asked: "Ma, why are you crying?"
before asking her father: "Pa, what happened to Mama why is it
Four days before the subject rape incidents or on October 12, that her underwear is torn[?]"49
1998, KKK and the accused-appellant slept together in Cebu
City where the graduation rites of their eldest daughter were When MMM received no definite answers to her questions, she
held. By October 14, 1998, the three of them were already back helped her mother get up in order to bring her to the girls'
in Cagayan de Oro City.33 bedroom. KKK then picked up her tom underwear and covered
herself with a blanket.50 However, their breakout from the room
On October 16, 1998, the accused-appellant, his wife KKK and was not easy. To prevent KKK from leaving, the accused-
their children went about their nightly routine. The family store in appellant blocked the doorway by extending his arm towards the
their residence was closed at about 9:00 p.m. before supper was knob. He commanded KKK to "[S]tay here, you sleep in our
taken. Afterwards, KKK and the children went to the girls' room," when the trembling KKK pleaded: "Eddie, allow me to go
bedroom at the mezzanine of the house to pray the rosary while out." He then held KKK's hands but she pulled them back.
the accused-appellant watched television in the living Determined to get away, MMM leaned against door and
room.34 OOO and MMM then prepared their beds. Soon after, the embraced her mother tightly as they pushed their way out.51
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In their bedroom, the girls gave their mother some water and they got married on October 18, 1975, he was a high school
queried her as to what happened.52 KKK relayed: "[Y]our father graduate while she was an elementary graduate.
is an animal, a beast; he forced me to have sex with him when
I'm not feeling well." The girls then locked the door and let her Their humble educational background did not deter them from
rest."53 pursuing a comfortable life. Through their joint hard work and
efforts, the couple gradually acquired personal properties and
The accused-appellant's aggression recurred the following night. established their own businesses that included a rice mill
After closing the family store on October 17, 1998, KKK and the managed by the accused-appellant. He also drove their trucks
children took their supper. The accused-appellant did not join that hauled coffee, copra, or com.63
them since, according to him, he already ate dinner elsewhere.
After resting for a short while, KKK and the children proceeded The accused-appellant denied raping his wife on October 16 and
to the girls' bedroom and prayed the rosary. KKK decided to 17, 1998. He claimed that on those dates he was in Dangcagan,
spend the night in the room's small bed and the girls were Bukidnon, peeling com. On October 7, his truck met an accident
already fixing the beddings when the accused-appellant entered. somewhere in Angeles Ranch, Maluko, Manolo Fortich,
Bukidnon. He left the truck by the roadside because he had to
"Why are you sleeping in the room of our children", he asked attend MMM's graduation in Cebu on October 12 with KKK.
KKK, who responded that she preferred to sleep with the When they returned to Bukidnon on October 14, he asked KKK
children.54 He then scoffed: "Its alright if you will not go with me, and MMM to proceed to Cagayan de Oro City and just leave him
anyway, there are women that could be paid [P] 1,000.00." She behind so he can take care of the truck and buy some com.64
dismissed his comment by turning her head away after retorting:
"So be it." After that, he left the room.55 Ryle Equia (Equia), the spouses' driver from January 1996 until
June 1999 corroborated the above claims. According to him, on
He returned 15 minutes later56 and when KKK still refused to go October 16, 1998, the accused-appellant was within the vicinity
with him, he became infuriated. He lifted her from the bed and of the rice mill's loading area in Dangcagan, Bukidnon, cleaning
attempted to carry her out of the room as he exclaimed: "Why a pick-up truck. On October 17, 1998, he and the accused-
will you sleep here[?] Lets go to our bedroom." When she defied appellant were in Dangcagan, Bukidnon, loading sacks of com
him, he grabbed her short pants causing them to tear apart. 57 At into the truck. They finished loading at 3 :00 p.m. The accused-
this point, MMM interfered, "Pa, don't do that to Mama because appellant then instructed Equia to proceed to Maluko, Manolo
we are in front of you."58 Fortich, Bukidnon while the former attended a fiesta in New
Cebu, Kianggat, Dangcagan, Bukidnon. At around 4:00 p.m.,
The presence of his children apparently did not pacify the Equia, together with a helper and a mechanic, left for Maluko in
accused-appellant who yelled, "[E]ven in front of you, I can have order to tow the stalled truck left there by the accused-appellant
sex of your mother [sic J because I'm the head of the family." He in October 7 and thereafter, bring it to Cagayan de Oro City
then ordered his daughters to leave the room. Frightened, the together with the separate truck loaded with com.
girls obliged and went to the staircase where they subsequently
heard the pleas of their helpless mother resonate with the They arrived in Maluko at 7:00 p.m. and it took them three hours
creaking bed.59 to turn the truck around and hoist it to the towing bar of the other
truck. At around 10:00 p.m., the accused-appellant arrived in
The episodes in the bedroom were no less disturbing. The Maluko. The four of them then proceeded to Cagayan de Oro
accused-appellant forcibly pulled KKK's short pants and panties. City where they arrived at 3 :00 a.m. of October 18, 1998. The
He paid no heed as she begged, "[D]on 't do that to me, my body accused-appellant went to Gusa while the other three men
is still aching and also my abdomen and I cannot do what you brought the damaged truck to Cugman.65
wanted me to do [sic]. I cannot withstand sex."60
The accused-appellant asserted that KKK merely fabricated the
After removing his own short pants and briefs, he flexed her rape charges as her revenge because he took over the control
legs, held her hands, mounted her and forced himself inside her. and management of their businesses as well as the possession
Once gratified, the accused-appellant put on his short pants and of their pick-up truck in January 1999. The accused-appellant
briefs, stood up, and went out of the room laughing as he was provoked to do so when she failed to account for their bank
conceitedly uttered: "[I]t s nice, that is what you deserve because deposits and business earnings. The entries in their bank
you are [a] flirt or fond of sex." He then retreated to the masters' account showed the balance of P3,190,539.83 on October 31,
bedroom.61 1996 but after only a month or on November 30, 1996, the
amount dwindled to a measly P9,894.88.66 Her failure to
Sensing that the commotion in their bedroom has ceased, MMM immediately report to the police also belies her rape
and OOO scurried upstairs but found the door locked. MMM allegations.67
pulled out a jalousie window, inserted her arm, reached for the
doorknob inside and disengaged its lock. Upon entering the KKK wanted to cover-up her extra-marital affairs, which the
room, MMM and OOO found their mother crouched on the bed accused-appellant gradually detected from her odd behavior.
with her hair disheveled. The girls asked: "Ma, what happened to While in Cebu on October 12, 1998 for MMM's graduation rites,
you, why are you crying?" KKK replied: "[Y}our father is a beast the accused-appellant and KKK had sexual intercourse. He was
and animal, he again forced me to have sex with him even if I surprised when his wife asked him to get a napkin to wipe her
don't feel well. "62 after having sex. He tagged her request as "high-tech," because
they did not do the same when they had sex in the past. KKK
Version of the defense had also become increasingly indifferent to him. When he arrives
home, it was an employee, not her, who opened the door and
welcomed him. She prettied herself and would no longer ask for
The defense spun a different tale. The accused-appellant's father
his permission whenever she went out.68
owned a land adjacent to that of KKK's father. He came to know
KKK because she brought food for her father's laborers. When
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Bebs,69 KKK's cousin and a cashier in their Bukidnon store, gave In its Decision78 dated July 9, 2008, the CA affirmed in toto the
the accused-appellant several love letters purportedly addressed RTC ruling. The CA held that Section 14, Rule 110 of the Rules
to Bebs but were actually intended for KKK.70 of Criminal Procedure, sanctioned the amendment of the original
informations. Further, the accused-appellant was not prejudiced
KKK had more than ten paramours some of whom the accused- by the amendment because he was re-arraigned with respect to
appellant came to know as: Arsenio, Jong-Jong, Joy or Joey, the amended informations.
somebody from the military or the Philippine National Police,
another one is a government employee, a certain Fernandez and The CA found that the prosecution, through the straightforward
three other priests.71 Several persons told him about the testimony of the victim herself and the corroborative declarations
paramours of his wife but he never confronted her or them about of MMM and OOO, was able to establish, beyond reasonable
it because he trusted her.72 doubt, all the elements of rape under R.A. No. 8353. The
accused-appellant had carnal knowledge of KKK by using force
What further confirmed his suspicions was the statement made and intimidation.
by OOO on November 2, 1998. At that time, OOO was listening
loudly to a cassette player. Since he wanted to watch a television The CA also ruled that KKK's failure to submit herself to medical
program, he asked OOO to tum down the volume of the cassette examination did not negate the commission of the crime
player. She got annoyed, unplugged the player, spinned around because a medical certificate is not necessary to prove rape.
and hit the accused-appellant's head with the socket. His head
bled. An altercation between the accused-appellant and KKK The CA rejected the accused-appellant's argument that since he
thereafter followed because the latter took OOO's side. During and KKK are husband and wife with mutual obligations of and
the argument, OOO blurted out that KKK was better off without right to sexual intercourse, there must be convincing physical
the accused-appellant because she had somebody young, evidence or manifestations of the alleged force and intimidation
handsome, and a businessman unlike the accused-appellant used upon KKK such as bruises. The CA explained that physical
who smelled bad, and was old, and ugly.73 showing of external injures is not indispensable to prosecute and
convict a person for rape; what is necessary is that the victim
KKK also wanted their property divided between them with three- was forced to have sexual intercourse with the accused.
fourths thereof going to her and one-fourth to the accused-
appellant. However, the separation did not push through In addition, the CA noted that the fact that KKK and the accused-
because the accused-appellant's parents appellant are spouses only reinforces the truthfulness of KKK's
intervened.74 Thereafter, KKK pursued legal separation from the accusations because no wife in her right mind would accuse her
accused-appellant by initiating Barangay Case No. 00588-99 husband of having raped her if it were not true.
before the Office of Lupong Tagapamayapa of Gusa, Cagayan
de Oro City and thereafter obtaining a Certificate to File Action The delay in the filing of the rape complaint was sufficiently
dated February 18, 1999.75 explained by KKK when she stated that she only found out that a
wife may charge his husband with rape when the fiscal
Ruling of the RTC investigating her separate complaint for grave threats and
physical injuries told her about it.
In its Judgment76 dated April 1, 2002, the RTC sustained the
version proffered by the prosecution by giving greater weight and Finally, the CA dismissed the accused-appellant's alibi for lack of
credence to the spontaneous and straightforward testimonies of convincing evidence that it was physically impossible for him to
the prosecution's witnesses. The trial court also upheld as be at his residence in Cagayan de Oro City at the time of the
sincere and genuine the two daughters' testimonies, as it is not commission of the crimes, considering that Dangcagan,
natural in our culture for daughters to testify against their own Bukidnon, the place where he allegedly was, is only about four
father for a crime such as rape if the same was not truly or five hours away. Accordingly, the decretal portion of the
committed. decision read:

The trial court rejected the version of the defense and found WHEREFORE, in the light of the foregoing, the appealed
unbelievable the accused-appellant's accusations of extra- Judgment is hereby AFFIRMED.
marital affairs and money squandering against KKK. The trial
court shelved the accused-appellant's alibi for being premised on SO ORDERED.79
inconsistent testimonies and the contradicting declarations of the
other defense witness, Equia, as to the accused-appellant's
Hence, the present review. In the Court Resolution 80 dated July
actual whereabouts on October 16, 1998. Accordingly, the RTC
6, 2009, the Court notified the parties that, if they so desire, they
ruling disposed as follows:
may file their respective supplemental briefs. In a Manifestation
and Motion81 dated September 4, 2009, the appellee, through the
WHEREFORE, the Court hereby finds accused Edgar Jumawan Office of the Solicitor General, expressed that it intends to adopt
"GUILTY" beyond reasonable doubt of the two (2) separate its Brief before the CA. On April 16, 2012, the accused-appellant,
charges of rape and hereby sentences him to suffer the penalty through counsel, filed his Supplemental Brief, arguing that he
of reclusion perpetua for each, to pay complainant [P]50,000.00 was not in Cagayan de Oro City when the alleged rape incidents
in each case as moral damages, indemnify complainant the sum took place, and the presence of force, threat or intimidation is
of (P]75,000.00 in each case, [P]50,000.00 as exemplary negated by: (a) KKK's voluntary act of going with him to the
damages and to pay the costs. conjugal bedroom on October 16, 1998; (b) KKK's failure to put
up resistance or seek help from police authorities; and ( c) the
SO ORDERED.77 absence of a medical certificate and of blood traces in KKK's
panties.82
Ruling of the CA
Our Ruling
5

I. Rape and marriage: the historical connection wife but he will be liable when he aids or abets another person in
raping her.98
The evolution of rape laws is actually traced to two ancient
English practices of 'bride capture' whereby a man conquered a In the 1970s, the rule was challenged by women's movements in
woman through rape and 'stealing an heiress' whereby a man the USA demanding for its abolition for being violative of married
abducted a woman and married her.83 women's right to be equally protected under rape laws.99

The rape laws then were intended not to redress the violation of In 1978, the rule was qualified by the Legislature in New York by
the woman's chastity but rather to punish the act of obtaining the proscribing the application of the rule in cases where the
heiress' property by forcible marriage84 or to protect a man's husband and wife are living apart pursuant to a court order
valuable interest in his wife's chastity or her daughter's virginity.85 "which by its terms or in its effects requires such living apart," or
a decree, judgment or written agreement of separation.100
If a man raped an unmarried virgin, he was guilty of stealing her
father's property and if a man raped his wife, he was merely In 1983, the marital exemption rule was abandoned in New York
using his property.86 when the Court of Appeals of New York declared the same
unconstitutional in People v. Liberta101 for lack of rational basis in
Women were subjugated in laws and society as objects or goods distinguishing between marital rape and non-marital rape. The
and such treatment was justified under three ideologies. decision, which also renounced Hale's irrevocable implied
consent theory, ratiocinated as follows:
Under the chattel theory prevalent during the 6th century, a
woman was the property of her father until she marries to We find that there is no rational basis for distinguishing between
become the property of her husband.87 If a man abducted an marital rape and nonmarital rape. The various rationales which
unmarried woman, he had to pay the owner, and later buy her have been asserted in defense of the exemption are either
from the owner; buying and marrying a wife were synonymous.88 based upon archaic notions about the consent and property
rights incident to marriage or are simply unable to withstand
From the 11th century to the 16th century, a woman lost her even the slightest scrutiny. We therefore declare the marital
identity upon marriage and the law denied her political power exemption for rape in the New York statute to be
and status under the feudal doctrine of coverture.89 unconstitutional.

A husband had the right to chastise his wife and beat her if she Lord Hale's notion of an irrevocable implied consent by a married
misbehaved, allowing him to bring order within the family.90 woman to sexual intercourse has been cited most frequently in
support of the marital exemption. x x x Any argument based on a
supposed consent, however, is untenable. Rape is not simply a
This was supplanted by the marital unity theory, which espoused
sexual act to which one party does not consent. Rather, it is a
a similar concept. Upon marrying, the woman becomes one with
degrading, violent act which violates the bodily integrity of the
her husband. She had no right to make a contract, sue another,
victim and frequently causes severe, long-lasting physical and
own personal property or write a will.91
psychic harm x x x. To ever imply consent to such an act is
irrational and absurd. Other than in the context of rape statutes,
II. The marital exemption rule marriage has never been viewed as giving a husband the right to
coerced intercourse on demand x x x. Certainly, then, a marriage
In the 17th century, Sir Matthew Hale (Hale), a Chief Justice in license should not be viewed as a license for a husband to
England, conceived the irrevocable implied consent theory that forcibly rape his wife with impunity. A married woman has the
would later on emerge as the marital exemption rule in rape. He same right to control her own body as does an unmarried
stated that: woman x x x. If a husband feels "aggrieved" by his wife's refusal
to engage in sexual intercourse, he should seek relief in the
[T]he husband cannot be guilty of a rape committed by himself courts governing domestic relations, not in "violent or forceful
upon his lawful wife, for by their mutual matrimonial consent and self-help x x x."
contract the wife hath given up herself in this kind unto her
husband, which she cannot retract.92 The other traditional justifications for the marital exemption were
the common-law doctrines that a woman was the property of her
The rule was observed in common law countries such as the husband and that the legal existence of the woman was
United States of America (USA) and England. It gives legal "incorporated and consolidated into that of the husband x x x."
immunity to a man who forcibly sexually assaults his wife, an act Both these doctrines, of course, have long been rejected in this
which would be rape if committed against a woman not his State. Indeed, "[nowhere] in the common-law world - [or] in any
wife.93 In those jurisdictions, rape is traditionally defined as "the modem society - is a woman regarded as chattel or demeaned
forcible penetration of the body of a woman who is not the wife by denial of a separate legal identity and the dignity associated
of the perpetrator."94 with recognition as a whole human being x x x." 102 (Citations
omitted)
The first case in the USA that applied the marital exemption rule
was Commonwealth v. Fogerty95 promulgated in 1857. The By 1993, marital rape was a crime in all 50 states, with 17 of
Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts pronounced that it them, as well as the District of Columbia, outlawing the act
would always be a defense in rape to show marriage to the without exemptions. Meanwhile, the 33 other states granted
victim. Several other courts adhered to a similar rationale with all some exemptions to a husband from prosecution such as when
of them citing Hale's theory as basis.96 the wife is mentally or physically impaired, unconscious, asleep,
or legally unable to consent.103
The rule was formally codified in the Penal Code of New York in
1909. A husband was endowed with absolute immunity from III. Marital Rape in the Philippines
prosecution for the rape of his wife.97 The privilege was personal
and pertained to him alone. He had the marital right to rape his
6

Interestingly, no documented case on marital rape has ever the 2nd paragraph of Section 2 thereof recognizing the reality of
reached this Court until now. It appears, however, that the old marital rape and criminalizing its perpetration, viz:
provisions of rape under Article 335 of the RPC adhered to
Hale's irrevocable implied consent theory, albeit in a limited form. Article 266-C. Effect of Pardon. - The subsequent valid marriage
According to Chief Justice Ramon C. Aquino,104 a husband may between the offended party shall extinguish the criminal action or
not be guilty of rape under Article 335 of Act No. 3815 but, in the penalty imposed.
case there is legal separation, the husband should be held guilty
of rape if he forces his wife to submit to sexual intercourse.105 In case it is the legal husband who is the offender, the
subsequent forgiveness by the wife as the offended party shall
In 1981, the Philippines joined 180 countries in ratifying the extinguish the criminal action or the penalty: Provided, That the
United Nations Convention on the Elimination of all Forms of crime shall not be extinguished or the penalty shall not be
Discrimination Against Women (UN-CEDAW).106 Hailed as the abated if the marriage is void ab initio.
first international women's bill of rights, the CEDAW is the first
major instrument that contains a ban on all forms of Read together with Section 1 of the law, which unqualifiedly uses
discrimination against women. The Philippines assumed the role the term "man" in defining rape, it is unmistakable that R.A. No.
of promoting gender equality and women's empowerment as a 8353 penalizes the crime without regard to the rapist's legal
vital element in addressing global concerns.107 The country also relationship with his victim, thus:
committed, among others, to condemn discrimination against
women in all its forms, and agreed to pursue, by all appropriate
Article 266-A. Rape: When And How Committed. - Rape is
means and without delay, a policy of eliminating discrimination
committed:
against women and, to this end, undertook:

1) By a man who shall have carnal knowledge of a woman under


(a) To embody the principle of the equality of men and women in
any of the following circumstances:
their national constitutions or other appropriate legislation if not
yet incorporated therein and to ensure, through law and other
appropriate means, the practical realization of this principle; a) Through force, threat, or intimidation;

(b) To adopt appropriate legislative and other measures, b) When the offended party is deprived of reason or
including sanctions where appropriate, prohibiting all otherwise unconscious;
discrimination against women;
c) By means of fraudulent machination or grave abuse
xxxx of authority; and

(f) To take all appropriate measures, including legislation, to d) When the offended party is under twelve (12) years
modify or abolish existing laws, regulations, customs and of age or is demented, even though none of the
practices which constitute discrimination against women; circumstances mentioned above be present.

(g) To repeal all national penal provisions which constitute The explicit intent to outlaw marital rape is deducible from the
discrimination against women.108 records of the deliberations of the 10th Congress on the law's
progenitor's, House Bill No. 6265 and Senate Bill No. 650. In
spite of qualms on tagging the crime as 'marital rape' due to
In compliance with the foregoing international commitments, the
conservative Filipino impressions on marriage, the consensus of
Philippines enshrined the principle of gender equality in the 1987
our lawmakers was clearly to include and penalize marital rape
Constitution specifically in Sections 11 and 14 of Article II
under the general definition of 'rape,' viz:
thereof, thus:

MR. DAMASING: Madam Speaker, Your Honor, one more point


Sec. 11. The State values the dignity of every human person and
guarantees full respect for human rights.
of clarification in the House version on Anti-Rape Bill, House Bill
No. 6265, we never agreed to marital rape. But under Article
xxxx
266-C, it says here: "In case it is the legal husband who is the
offender... " Does this presuppose that there is now marital rape?
Sec. 14. The State recognizes the role of women in nation- x x x.
building, and shall ensure the fundamental equality before the
law of women and men. The Philippines also acceded to adopt
MR. LARA: x x x [I]n this jurisdiction, well, I only have a limited,
and implement the generally accepted principles of international
very limited 17 years of private practice in the legal profession,
law such as the CEDA W and its allied issuances, viz:
Madam Speaker, and I believe that I can put at stake my license
as a lawyer in this jurisdiction there is no law that prohibits a
Article II, Section 2. The Philippines renounces war as an husband from being sued by the wife for rape. Even
instrument of national policy, and adopts the generally accepted jurisprudence, we don't have any jurisprudence that prohibits a
principles of international law as part of the law of the land and wife from suing a husband. That is why even if we don't provide
adheres to the policy of peace, equality, justice, freedom, in this bill expanding the definition of crime that is now being
cooperation, and amity with all nations. (Emphasis ours) presented for approval, Madam Speaker, even if we don't
provide here for marital rape, even if we don't provide for sexual
The Legislature then pursued the enactment of laws to rape, there is the right of the wife to go against the husband. The
propagate gender equality. In 1997, R.A. No. 8353 eradicated wife can sue the husband for marital rape and she cannot be
the stereotype concept of rape in Article 335 of the RPC. 109 The prevented from doing so because in this jurisdiction there is no
law reclassified rape as a crime against person and removed it law that prohibits her from doing so. This is why we had to put
from the ambit of crimes against chastity. More particular to the second paragraph of 266-C because it is the belief of many of
present case, and perhaps the law's most progressive proviso is us. x x x, that if it is true that in this jurisdiction there is marital
7

rape even if we don't provide it here, then we must provide for me it's not alarming. It was just a way of saying you're [the]
something that will unify and keep the cohesion of the family husband, you cannot say when I am charged with rape x x x.
together that is why we have the second paragraph.
PRESIDING OFFICER SHAHAN!: All right, so how do you
MR. DAMASING: Madam Speaker, Your Honor, under the House propose it if we put it in[?]
version specifically House Bill No. 6265 our provision on a
husband forcing the wife is not marital rape, it is marital sexual HON. ROCO: x x x [A]ll we are saying [is] that if you are the
assault. lawful husband does not mean you can have carnal knowledge
by force[,] threat or intimidation or by depriving your wife reason,
MR. LARA: That is correct, Madam Speaker. a grave abuse of authority, I don't know how that cannot apply. Di
ba yung, or putting an instrument into the, yun ang sinasabi ko
MR. DAMASING: But here it is marital rape because there is no lang, it is not meant to have another classification of rape. It is all
crime of sexual assault. So, Your Honor, direct to the point, the same definition x x x.
under Article 266-C, is it our understanding that in the second
paragraph, quote: "In case it is the legal husband who is the xxxx
offender, this refers to marital rape filed against the husband? Is
that correct? HON.ROCO: What is 266-F? x x x. Now if we can retain 266-F x
x x, we can say that this rule is implicit already in the first
MR. LARA: No, Madam Speaker, not entirely, no. The answer is proviso. It implies na there is an instance when a husband can
no. be charged [with] rape x x x.

MR. DAMASING: So if the husband is guilty of sexual assault, HON. ROXAS: Otherwise, silent na.
what do you call- it?
HON. ROCO: Otherwise, we are silent na. So parang i-delete
MR. LARA: Sexual assault, Madam Speaker. natin ito. But it is understood that this rule of evidence is now
transport[ed], put into 266-F, the effect of pardon.
MR. DAMASING: There is no crime of sexual assault, Your
Honor, we have already stated that. Because under 1 and 2 it is PRESIDING OFFICER APOSTOL: We will retain this effect of
all denominated as rape, there is no crime of sexual assault. pardon. We will remove marital rape.
That is why I am sorry that our House version which provided for
sexual assault was not carried by the Senate version because all HON. ROCO: No, yun ang, oo we will remove this one on page 3
sexual crimes under this bicameral conference committee report but we will retain the one on page 8, the effect of pardon. x x x
are all now denominated as rape whether the penalty is from [I]t is inferred but we leave it because after all it is just a rule of
reclusion perpetua to death or whether the penalty is only prision evidence. But I think we should understand that a husband
mayor. So there is marital rape, Your Honor, is that correct? cannot beat at his wife to have sex. Di ha? I think that should be
made clear. x x x.
xxxx
xxxx
MR. DAMASING: Madam Speaker, Your Honor, I am in favor of
this. I am in favor of punishing the husband who forces the wife HON. ROCO: x x x [W]e are not defining a crime of marital rape.
even to 30 years imprisonment. But please do not call it marital All we are saying is that if you're [the] legal husband, Jesus
rape, call it marital sexual assault because of the sanctity of Christ, don't beat up to have sex. I almost want, you are my wife,
marriage. x x x.110 (Emphasis ours) why do you have to beat me up.

HON. APOSTOL: In our version, we did not mention marital rape So, ganoon. So, if we both justify it that way in the Report as
but marital rape is not excluded. inferred in proviso, I mean, we can face up, I hope, to the women
and they would understand that it is half achieved.
HON. ROCO: Yeah. No. But I think there is also no specific
mention. HON. ZAMORA: I think, Raul, as long as we understand that we
are not defining or creating a new crime but instead, we are just
HON. APOSTOL: No. No. No. Silent lang 'yung marital rape. defining a rule of evidence. x x x.

xxxx HON. ROCO: Then, in which case we may just want to clarify as
a rule of evidence the fact that he is husband is not, does not
HON. ROCO: xx x [I]f we can retain the effect of pardon, then negate.111
this marital rape can be implicitly contained in the second
paragraph. x x x So marital rape actually was in the House CHAIRMAN LARA: x x x We all agree on the substance of the
version x x x. But it was not another definition of rape. You will point in discussion. The only disagreement now is where to place
notice, it only says, that because you are the lawful husband it. Let us clear this matter. There are two suggestions now on
does not mean that you cannot commit rape. Theoretically, I marital rape. One is that it is rape if it is done with force or
mean, you can beat up your wife until she's blue. And if the wife intimidation or any of the circumstances that would define rape x
complains she was raped, I guess that, I mean, you just cannot x x immaterial. The fact that the husband and wife are separated
raise the defense x x x[:] I am the husband. But where in the does not come into the picture. So even if they are living under
marriage contract does it say that I can beat you up? That's all it one roof x x x for as long as the attendant circumstances of the
means. That is why if we stop referring to it as marital rape, traditional rape is present, then that is rape.112
acceptance is easy. Because parang ang marital rape, married
na nga kami. I cannot have sex. No, what it is saying is you're
[the] husband but you cannot beat me up. x x x. That's why to
8

PRESIDING OFFICER ANGARA-CASTILLO: Mr. Chairman, x x CA, he posits that the two incidents of sexual intercourse, which
x [t]his provision on marital rape, it does not actually change the gave rise to the criminal charges for rape, were theoretically
meaning of rape. It merely erases the doubt in anybody's mind, consensual, obligatory even, because he and the victim, KKK,
whether or not rape can indeed be committed by the husband were a legally married and cohabiting couple. He argues that
against the wife. So the bill really says, you having been married consent to copulation is presumed between cohabiting husband
to one another is not a legal impediment. So I don't really think and wife unless the contrary is proved.
there is any need to change the concept of rape as defined
presently under the revised penal code. This do[es] not actually The accused-appellant further claims that this case should be
add anything to the definition of rape. It merely says, it is merely viewed and treated differently from ordinary rape cases and that
clarificatory. That if indeed the wife has evidence to show that the standards for determining the presence of consent or lack
she was really brow beaten, or whatever or forced or intimidated thereof must be adjusted on the ground that sexual community is
into having sexual intercourse against her will, then the crime of a mutual right and obligation between husband and wife.116
rape has been committed against her by the husband,
notwithstanding the fact that they have been legally married. It The contentions failed to muster legal and rational merit.
does not change anything at all, Mr. Chairman.

The ancient customs and ideologies from which the irrevocable


PRESIDING OFFICER APOSTOL: Yes, I think, there is no implied consent theory evolved have already been superseded
change on this x x x.113 by modem global principles on the equality of rights between
men and women and respect for human dignity established in
The paradigm shift on marital rape in the Philippine jurisdiction is various international conventions, such as the CEDAW. The
further affirmed by R.A. No. 9262, 114 which regards rape within Philippines, as State Party to the CEDAW, recognized that a
marriage as a form of sexual violence that may be committed by change in the traditional role of men as well as the role of
a man against his wife within or outside the family abode, viz: women in society and in the family is needed to achieve full
equality between them. Accordingly, the country vowed to take
Violence against women and their children refers to any act or a all appropriate measures to modify the social and cultural
series of acts committed by any person against a woman who is patterns of conduct of men and women, with a view to achieving
his wife, former wife, or against a woman with whom the person the elimination of prejudices, customs and all other practices
has or had a sexual or dating relationship, or with whom he has which are based on the idea of the inferiority or the superiority of
a common child, or against her child whether legitimate or either of the sexes or on stereotyped roles for men and
illegitimate, within or without the family abode, which result in or women.117 One of such measures is R.A. No 8353 insofar as it
is likely to result in. physical, sexual, psychological harm or eradicated the archaic notion that marital rape cannot exist
suffering, or economic abuse including threats of such acts, because a husband has absolute proprietary rights over his
battery, assault, coercion, harassment or arbitrary deprivation of wife's body and thus her consent to every act of sexual intimacy
liberty. It includes, but is not limited to, the following acts: with him is always obligatory or at least, presumed.

A. "Physical Violence" refers to acts that include bodily or Another important international instrument on gender equality is
physical harm; the UN Declaration on the Elimination of Violence Against
Women, which was Promulgated118 by the UN General Assembly
B. "Sexual violence" refers to an act which is sexual in nature, subsequent to the CEDA W. The Declaration, in enumerating the
committed against a woman or her child. It includes, but is not forms of gender-based violence that constitute acts of
limited to: discrimination against women, identified 'marital rape' as a
species of sexual violence, viz:
a) rape, sexual harassment, acts of lasciviousness, treating a
woman or her child as a sex object, making demeaning and Article 1
sexually suggestive remarks, physically attacking the sexual
parts of the victim's body, forcing her/him to watch obscene For the purposes of this Declaration, the term "violence against
publications and indecent shows or forcing the woman or her women" means any act of gender-based violence that results in,
child to do indecent acts and/or make films thereof, forcing the or is likely to result in, physical, sexual or psychological harm or
wife and mistress/lover to live in the conjugal home or sleep suffering to women, including threats of such acts, coercion or
together in the same room with the abuser; arbitrary deprivation of liberty, whether occurring in public or in
private life.
b) acts causing or attempting to cause the victim to engage in
any sexual activity by force, threat of force, physical or other Article 2
harm or threat of physical or other harm or coercion;
Violence against women shall be understood to encompass, but
c) Prostituting the woman or child. not be limited to, the following:

Statistical figures confirm the above characterization. Emotional (a) Physical, sexual and psychological violence occurring in the
and other forms of non-personal violence are the most common family, including battering, sexual abuse of female children in the
type of spousal violence accounting for 23% incidence among household, dowry-related violence, marital rape, female genital
ever-married women. One in seven ever-married women mutilation and other traditional practices harmful to women, non-
experienced physical violence by their husbands while eight spousal violence and violence related to
percent (8%) experienced sexual violence.115 exploitation;119 (Emphasis ours)

IV. Refutation of the accused-appellant's arguments Clearly, it is now acknowledged that rape, as a form of sexual
violence, exists within marriage. A man who penetrates her wife
The crux of the accused-appellant's plea for acquittal mirrors the without her consent or against her will commits sexual violence
irrevocable implied consent theory. In his appeal brief before the upon her, and the Philippines, as a State Party to the CEDA W
9

and its accompanying Declaration, defines and penalizes the act does an unmarried woman.128 She can give or withhold her
as rape under R.A. No. 8353. consent to a sexual intercourse with her husband and he cannot
unlawfully wrestle such consent from her in case she refuses.
A woman is no longer the chattel-antiquated practices labeled
her to be. A husband who has sexual intercourse with his wife is Lastly, the human rights of women include their right to have
not merely using a property, he is fulfilling a marital consortium control over and decide freely and responsibly on matters related
with a fellow human being with dignity equal 120 to that he accords to their sexuality, including sexual and reproductive health, free
himself. He cannot be permitted to violate this dignity by of coercion, discrimination and violence.129 Women do not divest
coercing her to engage in a sexual act without her full and free themselves of such right by contracting marriage for the simple
consent. Surely, the Philippines cannot renege on its reason that human rights are inalienable.130
international commitments and accommodate conservative yet
irrational notions on marital activities121 that have lost their In fine, since the law does not separately categorize marital rape
relevance in a progressive society. and non-marital rape nor provide for different definition or
elements for either, the Court, tasked to interpret and apply what
It is true that the Family Code, 122 obligates the spouses to love the law dictates, cannot trudge the forbidden sphere of judicial
one another but this rule sanctions affection and sexual intimacy, legislation and unlawfully divert from what the law sets forth.
as expressions of love, that are both spontaneous and Neither can the Court frame distinct or stricter evidentiary rules
mutual123 and not the kind which is unilaterally exacted by force for marital rape cases as it would inequitably burden its victims
or coercion. and unreasonably and irrationally classify them differently from
the victims of non-marital rape.
Further, the delicate and reverent nature of sexual intimacy
between a husband and wife excludes cruelty and coercion. Indeed, there exists no legal or rational reason for the Court to
Sexual intimacy brings spouses wholeness and oneness. It is a apply the law and the evidentiary rules on rape any differently if
gift and a participation in the mystery of creation. It is a deep the aggressor is the woman's own legal husband. The elements
sense of spiritual communion. It is a function which enlivens the and quantum of proof that support a moral certainty of guilt in
hope of procreation and ensures the continuation of family rape cases should apply uniformly regardless of the legal
relations. It is an expressive interest in each other's feelings at a relationship between the accused and his accuser.
time it is needed by the other and it can go a long way in
deepening marital relationship.124 When it is egoistically utilized Thus, the Court meticulously reviewed the present case in
to despoil marital union in order to advance a felonious urge for accordance with the established legal principles and evidentiary
coitus by force, violence or intimidation, the Court will step in to policies in the prosecution and resolution of rape cases and
protect its lofty purpose, vindicate justice and protect our laws found that no reversible error can be imputed to the conviction
and State policies. Besides, a husband who feels aggrieved by meted the accused-appellant.
his indifferent or uninterested wife's absolute refusal to engage in
sexual intimacy may legally seek the court's intervention to The evidence for the prosecution was
declare her psychologically incapacitated to fulfill an essential based on credible witnesses who gave
marital obligation.125 But he cannot and should not demand equally credible testimonies
sexual intimacy from her coercively or violently.

In rape cases, the conviction of the accused rests heavily on the


Moreover, to treat marital rape cases differently from non-marital credibility of the victim. Hence, the strict mandate that all courts
rape cases in terms of the elements that constitute the crime and must examine thoroughly the testimony of the offended party.
in the rules for their proof, infringes on the equal protection While the accused in a rape case may be convicted solely on the
clause. The Constitutional right to equal protection of the testimony of the complaining witness, courts are, nonetheless,
laws126 ordains that similar subjects should not be treated duty-bound to establish that their reliance on the victim's
differently, so as to give undue favor to some and unjustly testimony is justified. Courts must ensure that the testimony is
discriminate against others; no person or class of persons shall credible, convincing, and otherwise consistent with human
be denied the same protection of laws, which is enjoyed, by nature. If the testimony of the complainant meets the test of
other persons or other classes in like circumstances.127 credibility, the accused may be convicted on the basis thereof.131

As above discussed, the definition of rape in Section 1 of R.A. It is settled that the evaluation by the trial court of the credibility
No. 8353 pertains to: (a) rape, as traditionally known; (b) sexual of witnesses and their testimonies are entitled to the highest
assault; and (c) marital rape or that where the victim is the respect. This is in view of its inimitable opportunity to directly
perpetrator's own spouse. The single definition for all three forms observe the witnesses and their deportment, conduct and
of the crime shows that the law does not distinguish between attitude, especially during cross-examination. Thus, unless it is
rape committed in wedlock and those committed without a shown that its evaluation was tainted with arbitrariness or certain
marriage. Hence, the law affords protection to women raped by facts of substance and value have been plainly overlooked,
their husband and those raped by any other man alike. misunderstood, or misapplied, the same will not be disturbed on
appeal.132
The posture advanced by the accused-appellant arbitrarily
discriminates against married rape victims over unmarried rape After approximating the perspective of the trial court thru a
victims because it withholds from married women raped by their meticulous scrutiny of the entire records of the trial proceedings
husbands the penal redress equally granted by law to all rape and the transcript of each witnesses' testimony, the Court found
victims. no justification to disturb its findings.

Further, the Court adheres to and hereby adopts the rationale in Rather, the Court observed that KKK and her testimony were
Liberta in rejecting the argument akin to those raised by herein both credible and spontaneous. Hailed to the witness stand on
accused-appellant. A marriage license should not be viewed as a six separate occasions, KKK never wavered neither did her
license for a husband to forcibly rape his wife with impunity. A statements vacillate between uncertainty and certitude. She
married woman has the same right to control her own body, as
10

remained consistent, categorical, straightforward, and candid A He lie down beside me and asked me to have sex with him.
during the rigorous cross-examination and on rebuttal
examination, she was able to convincingly explain and debunk Q How did he manifest that he wanted to have sex with you?
the allegations of the defense.
A He put his hand on my lap and asked me to have sex with him
She vividly recounted how the accused-appellant forced her to but I warded off his hand.
have sex with him despite her refusal on October 16, 1998. He
initially ordered her to sleep beside him in their conjugal bed by Q Can you demonstrate to this Court how did he use his hand?
violently throwing the cot where she was resting. In order not to
aggravate his temper, KKK obeyed. On the bed, he insinuated
A Yes. "witness demonstrating on how the accused used his
for them to have sex. When she rejected his advances due to
finger by touching or knocking her lap which means that he
abdominal pain and headache, his request for intimacy
wanted to have sex."
transformed into a stubborn demand. Unyielding, KKK held her
panties but the accused-appellant forcibly pulled them down. The
tug caused the small clothing to tear apart. She reiterated that Q So, what did you do after that?
she was not feeling well and begged him to stop. But no amount
of resistance or begging subdued him. He flexed her two legs A I warded off his hand and refused because I was not feeling
apart, gripped her hands, mounted her, rested his own legs on well. (at this juncture the witness is sobbing)
hers and inserted his penis into her vagina. She continued
pleading but he never desisted.133 Q So, what did your husband do when you refused him to have
sex with you?
Her accurate recollection of the second rape incident on October
1 7, 1998 is likewise unmistakable. After the appalling episode in A He insisted and he pulled my pantie forcibly, that is why my
the conjugal bedroom the previous night, KKK decided to sleep pantie [sic] was tom.
in the children's bedroom. While her daughters were fixing the
beddings, the accused-appellant barged into the room and Q Why, what did you do when he started to pull your pantie [sic]?
berated her for refusing to go with him to their conjugal bedroom.
When KKK insisted to stay in the children's bedroom, the
A I resisted and tried to hold my pantie [sic] but I failed, because
accused-appellant got angry and pulled her up. MMM's attempt
he is so strong.
to pacify the accused-appellant further enraged him. He
reminded them that as the head of the family he could do
xx xx
whatever he wants with his wife. To demonstrate his role as
patriarch, he ordered the children to go out of the room and
thereafter proceeded to force KKK into sexual intercourse. He Q So, when your pantie [sic] was tom by your husband, what
forcibly pulled down her short pants and panties as KKK begged else did he do?
"Dont do that to me, my body is still aching and also my
abdomen and I cannot do what you wanted me to do. I cannot A He flexed my two legs and rested his two legs on my legs.
withstand sex."134 But her pleas fell on deaf ears. The accused-
appellant removed his shorts and briefs, spread KKK's legs Q So after that what else did he do?
apart, held her hands, mounted her and inserted his penis into
her vagina. After gratifying himself, he got dressed, left the room A He succeeded in having sex with me because he held my two
as he chuckled: "Its nice, that is what you deserve because you hands no matter how I wrestled but I failed because he is
are [a] flirt or fond of sex."135 stronger than me.

Entrenched is the rule that in the prosecution of rape cases, the COURT: Make it of record that the witness is sobbing while she
essential element that must be proved is the absence of the is giving her testimony.
victim's consent to the sexual congress.136
ATTY. LARGO: (To the witness cont'ng.)
Under the law, consent is absent when: (a) it was wrestled from
the victim by force, threat or intimidation, fraudulent
Q So, what did you do when your husband already stretched
machinations or grave abuse of authority; or (b) the victim is
your two legs and rode on you and held your two hands?
incapable of giving free and voluntary consent because he/she is
deprived of reason or otherwise unconscious or that the offended
party is under 12 years of age or is demented. A I told him, "don't do that because I'm not feeling well and my
whole body is aching."

Contrary to the accused-appellant's asseverations, KKK's


consent was wrestled from her through force and intimidation Q How did you say that to your husband?
both of which were established beyond moral certainty by the
prosecution through the pertinent testimony of KKK, viz: A I told him, "don't do that to me because I'm not feeling well."

On the October 16, 1998 rape incident: Q Did you say that in the manner you are saying now?

(Direct Examination) xxxx

ATTY. LARGO: A I shouted when I uttered that words.

Q So, while you were already lying on the bed together with your xxxx
husband, do you remember what happened?
11

Q Was your husband able to consummate his desire? A I told him, "don't do that to me, my body is still aching and also
my abdomen and I cannot do what you wanted me to do. I
xxxx cannot withstand sex."

A Yes, sir, because I cannot do anything.137 Q So, what happened to your short when he forcibly pulled it
down?
(Cross-Examination)
A It was tom.
ATTY. AMARGA;
Q And after your short and pantie was pulled down by your
Q Every time you have sex with your husband it was your husband, what did he do?
husband normally remove your panty?
A He also removed his short and brief and flexed my two legs
A Yes, Sir. and mounted on me and succeeded in having sex with me.139

Q It was not unusual for your husband then to remove your The accused-appellant forced his wife when he knowingly
panty because according to you he normally do that if he have overpowered her by gripping her hands, flexing her legs and
sex with you? then resting his own legs thereon in order to facilitate the
consummation of his much-desired non-consensual sexual
intercourse.
A Yes, Sir.

Records also show that the accused-appellant employed


Q And finally according to you your husband have sex with you?
sufficient intimidation upon KKK. His actuations prior to the
actual moment of the felonious coitus revealed that he imposed
A Yes, Sir because he forcibly used me in spite of holding my his distorted sense of moral authority on his wife. He furiously
panty because I don't want to have sex with him at that time. demanded for her to lay with him on the bed and thereafter
coerced her to indulge his sexual craving.
Q You did not spread your legs at that time when he removed
your panty? The fury the accused-appellant exhibited when KKK refused to
sleep with him on their bed, when she insisted to sleep in the
A Yes, Sir. children's bedroom and the fact that he exercises dominance
over her as husband all cowed KKK into submission.
Q Meaning, your position of your legs was normal during that
time? The fact that KKK voluntarily went with the accused-appellant to
their conjugal bedroom on October 16, 1998 cannot be stretched
A I tried to resist by not flexing my legs. to mean that she consented to the forced sexual intercourse that
ensued. The accused-appellant was KKK's husband and hence
xxxx it was customary for her to sleep in the conjugal bedroom. No
consent can be deduced from such act of KKK because at that
juncture there were no indications that sexual intercourse was
Q At that time when your husband allegedly removed your panty
about to take place. The issue of consent was still irrelevant
he also remove your nightgown?
since the act for which the same is legally required did not exist
yet or at least unclear to the person from whom the consent was
A No, Sir.
desired. The significant point when consent must be given is at
that time when it is clear to the victim that her aggressor is
Q And he did pull out your duster [sic] towards your face? soliciting sexual congress. In this case, that point is when the
accused-appellant tapped his fingers on her lap, a gesture KKK
A He raised my duster [sic] up. comprehended to be an invitation for a sexual intercourse, which
she refused.
Q In other words your face was covered when he raised your
duster [sic]? Resistance, medical certificate and blood traces.

A No, only on the breast level.138 We cannot give credence to the accused-appellant's argument
that KKK should have hit him to convey that she was resisting
On the October 17, 1998 rape incident: his sexual onslaught. Resistance is not an element of rape and
the law does not impose upon the victim the burden to prove
(Direct Examination) resistance140 much more requires her to raise a specific kind
thereof.
ATTY. LARGO
At any rate, KKK put up persistent, audible and intelligible
resistance for the accused-appellant to recognize that she
Q So, after your children went out of the room, what transpired?
seriously did not assent to a sexual congress. She held on to her
panties to prevent him from undressing her, she refused to bend
A He successfully having sex with me because he pulled my her legs and she repeatedly shouted and begged for him to stop.
short pant and pantie forcible.

Moreover, as an element of rape, force or intimidation need not


Q So, what did you say when he forcibly pulled your short and be irresistible; it may be just enough to bring about the desired
pantie? result. What is necessary is that the force or intimidation be
12

sufficient to consummate the purpose that the accused had in stayed by the staircase where they afterwards heard their
mind141 or is of such a degree as to impel the defenseless and mother helplessly crying and shouting for the accused-appellant
hapless victim to bow into submission.142 to stop.

Contrary to the accused-appellant's allusions, the absence of Indeed, the testimonies of KKK, MMM and OOO coherently
blood traces in KKK's panties or the lack of a medical certificate depicted that the accused-appellant, through the use of force
do not negate rape. It is not the presence or absence of blood on and intimidation, had non-consensual and forced carnal
the victim's underwear that determines the fact of knowledge of his wife, KKK on the nights of October 16 and 17,
rape143 inasmuch as a medical certificate is dispensable 1998.
evidence that is not necessary to prove rape.144 These details do
not pertain to the elements that produce the gravamen of the KKK's helpless screams and pleas from inside the bedroom
offense that is -sexual intercourse with a woman against her will coupled with her verbal and physical resistance were clear
or without her consent.145 manifestations of coercion. Her appearance when MMM saw her
on the bed after the accused appellant opened the door on
The accused-appellant harps on the acquittal ruling in People v. October 16, 1998, her conduct towards the accused-appellant on
Godoy,146 the evidentiary circumstances of which are, however, her way out of the room, and her categorical outcry to her
disparate from those in the present case. In Godoy, the children after the two bedroom episodes - all generate the
testimony of the complainant was inherently weak, inconsistent, conclusion that the sexual acts that occurred were against her
and was controverted by the prosecution's medico-legal expert will.
witness who stated that force was not applied based on the
position of her hymenal laceration. This led the Court to conclude Failure to immediately report to the
that the absence of any sign of physical violence on the victim's police authorities, if satisfactorily
body is an indication of consent.147 Here, however, KKK's explained, is not fatal to the
testimony is, as discussed earlier, credible, spontaneous and credibility of a witness.
forthright.
The testimonies of KKK and her daughters cannot be discredited
merely because they failed to report the rape incidents to the
police authorities or that KKK belatedly filed the rape charges.
Delay or vacillation by the victims in reporting sexual assaults
does not necessarily impair their credibility if such delay is
The corroborative testimonies of satisfactorily explained.150
MMM and OOO are worthy of credence.
At that time, KKK and her daughters were not aware that a
The accused-appellant's assertion that MMM and OOO's husband forcing his wife to submit to sexual intercourse is
testimonies lacked probative value as they did not witness the considered rape. In fact, KKK only found out that she could sue
actual rape is bereft of merit. It must be stressed that rape is his husband for rape when Prosecutor Benjamin Tabique, Jr.
essentially committed in relative isolation, thus, it is usually only (Prosecutor Tabique) told her about it when she filed the
the victim who can testify with regard to the fact of the forced separate charges for grave threats and physical injuries against
sexual intercourse.148 Hence, the probative value of MMM and the accused-appellant.151
OOO's testimonies rest not on whether they actually witnessed
the rape but on whether their declarations were in harmony with It must be noted that the incidents occurred a year into the
KKK's narration of the circumstances, preceding, subsequent to effectivity of R.A. No. 8353 abolishing marital exemption in rape
and concurrent with, the rape incidents. cases hence it is understandable that it was not yet known to a
layman as opposed to legal professionals like Prosecutor
MMM and OOO's testimonies substantiated significant points in Tabique. In addition, fear of reprisal thru social humiliation which
KKK's narration. MMM heard KKK shouting and crying: "Eddie, is the common factor that deter rape victims from reporting the
don’t do that to me, have pity on me" 149 on the night of October crime to the authorities is more cumbersome in marital rape
16, 1998 shortly after KKK and the accused-appellant went to cases. This is in view of the popular yet outdated belief that it is
their conjugal bedroom. When MMM went upstairs to check on the wife's absolute obligation to submit to her husband's carnal
her mother, the accused-appellant admonished her for meddling. desires. A husband raping his own wife is often dismissed as a
Frustrated to aid her mother who persistently cried, MMM kicked peculiar occurrence or trivialized as simple domestic trouble.
the door so hard the accused-appellant was prompted to open it
and rebuke MMM once more. OOO heard all these commotion Unfamiliarity with or lack of knowledge of the law criminalizing
from the room downstairs. marital rape, the stigma and public scrutiny that could have
befallen KKK and her family had the intervention of police
MMM then saw her mother crouched on the bed, crying, with her authorities or even the neighbors been sought, are acceptable
hair disheveled while her tom panty lay on the floor. After a brief explanations for the failure or delay in reporting the subject rape
struggle with the accused-appellant, MMM and KKK were finally incidents.
able to escape and retreat to the children's bedroom where KKK
narrated to her daughters: "[Y]our father is an animal, a beast; The victim’s testimony on the
he forced me to have sex with him when I'm not feeling well. " witness stand rendered
unnecessary the presentation of her
KKK gave a similar narration to MMM and OOO the following complaint-affidavit as evidence.
night after the accused-appellant barged inside the children's
bedroom. The couple had an argument and when MMM tried to The failure of the prosecution to present KKK's complaint-
interfere, the accused-appellant ordered her and OOO to get out affidavit for rape is not fatal in view of the credible, candid and
after bragging that he can have sex with his wife even in front of positive testimony of KKK on the witness stand. Testimonial
the children because he is the head of the family. The girls then evidence carries more weight than the affidavit since it
13

underwent the rudiments of a direct, cross, re-direct and re-cross impossible for him to be at the locus delicti or within its
examinations. Affidavits or statements taken ex parte are immediate vicinity. Physical impossibility refers not only to the
generally considered incomplete and inaccurate. Thus, by geographical distance between the place where the accused
nature, they are inferior to testimony given in court.152 was and the place where the crime was committed when the
crime transpired, but more importantly, the facility of access
Ill motive imputed to the victim between the two places.155

The ill motive, which the accused-appellant imputed to KKK, Even granting in arguendo that the accused-appellant had
does not inspire belief as it is riddled with loopholes generated indeed attended a fiesta in Dangcagan, Bukidnon or was hauling
by incongruent and flimsy evidence. The prosecution was able to com with Equia on the dates of commission of the crime, the
establish that the P3 Million deposit in the spouses' bank same will not easily exonerate him. The accused-appellant failed
account was the proceeds of their loan from the Bank of to adduce clear and convincing evidence that it was physically
Philippine Islands (BPI). Exhibit J, which is a BPI ML instruction impossible for him to be at his residence in Cagayan de Oro City
sheet dated October 31, 1996 in the amount of P3,149,840.63 is at the time of the commission of the crime. Dangcagan,
the same amount the accused-appellant claimed to have Bukidnon can be traversed by about four or five hours from
entrusted to her wife. Although the accused-appellant denied Cagayan de Oro City, and even less by private vehicle which
being aware of such loan, he admitted that approximately P3 was available to the accused appellant at any time.156 Thus, it
Million was spent for the construction of their house. These was not physically impossible for him to be at the situs criminis at
pieces of evidence effectively belie the accused appellant's the dates and times when the two rape incidents were
allegation that KKK could not account for the money deposited in committed.
the bank.153
Between the accused-appellant's alibi and denial, and the
Anent, KKK's alleged extra-marital affairs, the accused-appellant positive identification and credible testimony of the victim, and
failed to explain how Bebs could be his wife KKK when the letter- her two daughters, the Court must give weight to the latter,
sender greeted Bebs a "happy birthday" on October 28 while especially in the absence of ill motive on their part to falsely
KKK's birthday is June 23. The accused-appellant also did not testify against the accused-appellant.
present Bebs herself, being a more competent witness to the
existence of the alleged love letters for KKK. He likewise failed, Conclusion
despite promise to do so, to present the original copies of such
love letters neither did he substantiate KKK's supposed extra- All told, the presumption of innocence endowed an accused-
marital affairs by presenting witnesses who could corroborate his appellant was sufficiently overcome by KKK's clear,
claims. Further, the Court finds it unbelievable that an able man straightforward, credible, and truthful declaration that on two
would not have the temerity to confront his wife who has fooled separate occasions, he succeeded in having sexual intercourse
around with 10 men - some of whom he has even met. The with her, without her consent and against her will. Evidence of
accused-appellant's erratic statements on the witness stand are overwhelming force and intimidation to consummate rape is
inconsistent with the theory of extra-marital romance making it extant from KKK's narration as believably corroborated by the
reasonable to infer that he merely made up those malicious testimonies of MMM and OOO and the physical evidence of
stories as a desperate ploy to extricate himself out of this legal KKK's tom panties and short pants. Based thereon, the reason
quandary. and conscience of the Court is morally certain that the accused-
appellant is guilty of raping his wife on the nights of October 16
At best, the basis of the alleged illicit affairs of KKK were the and 17, 1998.
accused-appellant's unfounded suspicions that hold no
evidentiary weight in law and thus incompetent to destroy KKK's Penalties
credibility and that of her testimony. In sum, the defense failed to
present sufficiently convincing evidence that KKK is a mere The Court affirms the penalty of reclusion perpetua, for each
vindictive wife who is harassing the accused-appellant with count of rape, meted upon the accused-appellant for being in
fabricated rape charges. accord with Article 266-A in relation to 266-B of the RPC. Further,
he shall not be eligible for parole pursuant to Section 3 of R.A.
Alibi No. 9346, which states that "persons convicted of offenses
punished with reclusion perpetua, or whose sentences will be
It must be stressed that in raising the irrevocable implied consent reduced to reclusion perpetua, by reason of this Act, shall not be
theory as defense, the accused-appellant has essentially eligible for parole under Act No. 4180, otherwise known as the
admitted the facts of sexual intercourse embodied in the two Indeterminate Sentence Law, as amended."157
criminal informations for rape. This admission is inconsistent with
the defense of alibi and any discussion thereon will thus be The Court sustains the moral damages awarded in the amount
irrelevant. of P50,000.00. Moral damages are granted to rape victims
without need of proof other than the fact of rape under the
At any rate, the courts a quo correctly rejected his alibi. assumption that the victim suffered moral injuries from the
experience she underwent.158
Alibi is one of the weakest defenses not only because it is
inherently frail and unreliable, but also because it is easy to The award of civil indemnity is proper; it is mandatory upon the
fabricate and difficult to check or rebut. It cannot prevail over the finding that rape took place.1âwphi1 Considering that the crime
positive identification of the accused by eyewitnesses who had committed is simple rape, there being no qualifying
no improper motive to testify falsely.154 circumstances attendant in its commission, the appropriate
amount is P50,000.00159 and not P75,000.00 as awarded by the
For the defense of alibi to prosper, the accused must prove not RTC.
only that he was at some other place at the time of the
commission of the crime, but also that it was physically
14

To serve as an example for public good and in order to deter a [G.R. No. 135981. January 15, 2004]
similar form of domestic violence, an award ofP30,000.00 as
exemplary damages is imperative.160

The damages awarded shall earn legal interest at the rate of six PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, appellee, vs. MARIVIC
percent (6%) per annum to be reckoned from the date of finality GENOSA, appellant.
of this judgment until fully paid.161
DECISION
A Final Note
PANGANIBAN, J.:

Rape is a crime that evokes global condemnation because it is


Admitting she killed her husband, appellant anchors her
an abhorrence to a woman's value and dignity as a human
prayer for acquittal on a novel theory -- the “battered woman
being. It respects no time, place, age, physical condition or
syndrome” (BWS), which allegedly constitutes self-defense.
social status. It can happen anywhere and it can happen to
Under the proven facts, however, she is not entitled to complete
anyone. Even, as shown in the present case, to a wife, inside
exoneration because there was no unlawful aggression -- no
her time-honored fortress, the family home, committed against
immediate and unexpected attack on her by her batterer-
her by her husband who vowed to be her refuge from cruelty.
husband at the time she shot him.
The herein pronouncement is an affirmation to wives that our
rape laws provide the atonement they seek from their sexually Absent unlawful aggression, there can be no self-defense,
coercive husbands. complete or incomplete.

But all is not lost. The severe beatings repeatedly inflicted


Husbands are once again reminded that marriage is not a
on appellant constituted a form of cumulative provocation that
license to forcibly rape their wives. A husband does not own his
broke down her psychological resistance and self-control. This
wife's body by reason of marriage. By marrying, she does not
“psychological paralysis” she suffered diminished her will power,
divest herself of the human right to an exclusive autonomy over
thereby entitling her to the mitigating factor under paragraphs 9
her own body and thus, she can lawfully opt to give or withhold
and 10 of Article 13 of the Revised Penal Code.
her consent to marital coitus. A husband aggrieved by his wife's
unremitting refusal to engage in sexual intercourse cannot resort In addition, appellant should also be credited with the
to felonious force or coercion to make her yield. He can seek extenuating circumstance of having acted upon an impulse so
succor before the Family Courts that can determine whether her powerful as to have naturally produced passion and
refusal constitutes psychological incapacity justifying an obfuscation. The acute battering she suffered that fatal night in
annulment of the marriage. the hands of her batterer-spouse, in spite of the fact that she
was eight months pregnant with their child, overwhelmed her
Sexual intimacy is an integral part of marriage because it is the and put her in the aforesaid emotional and mental state, which
spiritual and biological communion that achieves the marital overcame her reason and impelled her to vindicate her life and
purpose of procreation. It entails mutual love and self-giving and her unborn child’s.
as such it contemplates only mutual sexual cooperation and
Considering the presence of these two mitigating
never sexual coercion or imposition.
circumstances arising from BWS, as well as the benefits of the
Indeterminate Sentence Law, she may now apply for and be
The Court is aware that despite the noble intentions of the herein
released from custody on parole, because she has already
pronouncement, menacing personalities may use this as a tool
served the minimum period of her penalty while under detention
to harass innocent husbands. In this regard, let it be stressed
during the pendency of this case.
that safeguards in the criminal justice system are in place to spot
and scrutinize fabricated or false marital rape complaints and
any person who institutes untrue and malicious charges will be
made answerable under the pertinent provisions of the RPC The Case
and/or other laws.

For automatic review before this Court is the September


WHEREFORE, all the foregoing considered, the Decision dated
25, 1998 Decision[1] of the Regional Trial Court (RTC) of Ormoc
July 9, 2008 of the Court of Appeals in CA-G.R. CR-HC No.
City (Branch 35) in Criminal Case No. 5016-0, finding Marivic
00353 is hereby AFFIRMED with MODIFICATIONS. Accused-
Genosa guilty beyond reasonable doubt of parricide. The
appellant Edgar Jumawan is found GUILTY beyond reasonable
decretal portion of the Decision reads:
doubt of two (2) counts of RAPE and is sentenced to suffer the
penalty of reclusion perpetua for each count, without eligibility for
parole. He is further ordered to pay the victim, KKK, the amounts “WHEREFORE, after all the foregoing being duly considered, the
of PS0,000.00 as civil indemnity, P50,000.00 as moral damages, Court finds the accused, Marivic Genosa y Isidro, GUILTY
and P30,000.00 as exemplary damages, for each count of rape. beyond reasonable doubt of the crime of Parricide as provided
The award of damages shall earn legal interest at the rate of six under Article 246 of the Revised Penal Code as restored by Sec.
percent (6%) per annum from the finality of this judgment until 5, RA No. 7659, and after finding treachery as a generic
fully paid. aggravating circumstance and none of mitigating circumstance,
hereby sentences the accused with the penalty of DEATH.

SO ORDERED.
“The Court likewise penalizes the accused to pay the heirs of the
deceased the sum of fifty thousand pesos (P50,000.00),
PEOPLE v. GENOSA
Philippine currency as indemnity and another sum of fifty
thousand pesos (P50,000.00), Philippine currency as moral
EN BANC
damages.”[2]
15

The Information[3] charged appellant with parricide as the last time Arturo saw Ben alive. Arturo also noticed that since
follows: then, the Genosas’ rented house appeared uninhabited and was
always closed.
“That on or about the 15th day of November 1995, at Barangay
Bilwang, Municipality of Isabel, Province of Leyte, Philippines “On November 16, 1995, appellant asked Erlinda Paderog, her
and within the jurisdiction of this Honorable Court, the above- close friend and neighbor living about fifty (50) meters from her
named accused, with intent to kill, with treachery and evident house, to look after her pig because she was going to Cebu for a
premeditation, did then and there wilfully, unlawfully and pregnancy check-up. Appellant likewise asked Erlinda to sell her
feloniously attack, assault, hit and wound one BEN GENOSA, motorcycle to their neighbor Ronnie Dayandayan who
her legitimate husband, with the use of a hard deadly weapon, unfortunately had no money to buy it.
which the accused had provided herself for the purpose,
[causing] the following wounds, to wit: “That same day, about 12:15 in the afternoon, Joseph Valida was
waiting for a bus going to Ormoc when he saw appellant going
‘Cadaveric spasm. out of their house with her two kids in tow, each one carrying a
bag, locking the gate and taking her children to the waiting area
‘Body on the 2nd stage of decomposition. where he was. Joseph lived about fifty (50) meters behind the
Genosas’ rented house. Joseph, appellant and her children rode
‘Face, black, blownup & swollen w/ evident post-mortem lividity. the same bus to Ormoc. They had no conversation as Joseph
Eyes protruding from its sockets and tongue slightly protrudes noticed that appellant did not want to talk to him.
out of the mouth.
“On November 18, 1995, the neighbors of Steban Matiga told
‘Fracture, open, depressed, circular located at the occipital bone him about the foul odor emanating from his house being rented
of the head, resulting [in] laceration of the brain, spontaneous by Ben and appellant. Steban went there to find out the cause of
rupture of the blood vessels on the posterior surface of the brain, the stench but the house was locked from the inside. Since he
laceration of the dura and meningeal vessels producing severe did not have a duplicate key with him, Steban destroyed the gate
intracranial hemorrhage. padlock with a borrowed steel saw. He was able to get inside
through the kitchen door but only after destroying a window to
reach a hook that locked it. Alone, Steban went inside the
‘Blisters at both extrem[i]ties, anterior chest, posterior chest,
unlocked bedroom where the offensive smell was coming from.
trunk w/ shedding of the epidermis.
There, he saw the lifeless body of Ben lying on his side on the
bed covered with a blanket. He was only in his briefs with
‘Abdomen distended w/ gas. Trunk bloated.’ injuries at the back of his head. Seeing this, Steban went out of
the house and sent word to the mother of Ben about his son’s
which caused his death.”[4] misfortune. Later that day, Iluminada Genosa, the mother of
Ben, identified the dead body as that of [her] son.
With the assistance of her counsel,[5] appellant pleaded not
guilty during her arraignment on March 3, 1997. [6] In due course,
she was tried for and convicted of parricide. “Meanwhile, in the morning of the same day, SPO3 Leo
Acodesin, then assigned at the police station at Isabel, Leyte,
received a report regarding the foul smell at the Genosas’ rented
house. Together with SPO1 Millares, SPO1 Colon, and Dr.
The Facts Refelina Cerillo, SPO3 Acodesin proceeded to the house and
went inside the bedroom where they found the dead body of Ben
lying on his side wrapped with a bedsheet. There was blood at
Version of the Prosecution the nape of Ben who only had his briefs on. SPO3 Acodesin
found in one corner at the side of an aparador a metal pipe
about two (2) meters from where Ben was, leaning against a
The Office of the Solicitor General (OSG) summarizes the wall. The metal pipe measured three (3) feet and six (6) inches
prosecution’s version of the facts in this wise: long with a diameter of one and half (1 1/2) inches. It had an
open end without a stop valve with a red stain at one end. The
“Appellant and Ben Genosa were united in marriage on bedroom was not in disarray.
November 19, 1983 in Ormoc City. Thereafter, they lived with
the parents of Ben in their house at Isabel, Leyte. For a time, “About 10:00 that same morning, the cadaver of Ben, because of
Ben’s younger brother, Alex, and his wife lived with them too. its stench, had to be taken outside at the back of the house
Sometime in 1995, however, appellant and Ben rented from before the postmortem examination was conducted by Dr. Cerillo
Steban Matiga a house at Barangay Bilwang, Isabel, Leyte in the presence of the police. A municipal health officer at Isabel,
where they lived with their two children, namely: John Marben Leyte responsible for medico-legal cases, Dr. Cerillo found that
and Earl Pierre. Ben had been dead for two to three days and his body was
already decomposing. The postmortem examination of Dr.
“On November 15, 1995, Ben and Arturo Basobas went to a Cerillo yielded the findings quoted in the Information for parricide
cockfight after receiving their salary. They each had two (2) later filed against appellant. She concluded that the cause of
bottles of beer before heading home. Arturo would pass Ben’s Ben’s death was ‘cardiopulmonary arrest secondary to severe
house before reaching his. When they arrived at the house of intracranial hemorrhage due to a depressed fracture of the
Ben, he found out that appellant had gone to Isabel, Leyte to occipital [bone].’
look for him. Ben went inside his house, while Arturo went to a
store across it, waiting until 9:00 in the evening for “Appellant admitted killing Ben. She testified that going home
the masiao runner to place a bet. Arturo did not see appellant after work on November 15, 1995, she got worried that her
arrive but on his way home passing the side of the Genosas’ husband who was not home yet might have gone gambling since
rented house, he heard her say ‘I won’t hesitate to kill you’ to it was a payday. With her cousin Ecel Araño, appellant went to
which Ben replied ‘Why kill me when I am innocent?’ That was look for Ben at the marketplace and taverns at Isabel, Leyte but
16

did not find him there. They found Ben drunk upon their return at reconciled after Marivic had apparently again asked for Ben’s
the Genosas’ house. Ecel went home despite appellant’s forgiveness.
request for her to sleep in their house.
“Mrs. Iluminada Genosa, Marivic’s mother-in-law, testified too,
“Then, Ben purportedly nagged appellant for following him, even saying that Ben and Marivic married in ‘1986 or 1985 more or
challenging her to a fight. She allegedly ignored him and instead less here in Fatima, Ormoc City.’ She said as the marriage went
attended to their children who were doing their homework. along, Marivic became ‘already very demanding. Mrs. Iluminada
Apparently disappointed with her reaction, Ben switched off the Genosa said that after the birth of Marivic’s two sons, there were
light and, with the use of a chopping knife, cut the television ‘three (3) misunderstandings.’ The first was when Marivic
antenna or wire to keep her from watching television. According stabbed Ben with a table knife through his left arm; the second
to appellant, Ben was about to attack her so she ran to the incident was on November 15, 1994, when Marivic struck Ben on
bedroom, but he got hold of her hands and whirled her around. the forehead ‘using a sharp instrument until the eye was also
She fell on the side of the bed and screamed for help. Ben left. affected. It was wounded and also the ear’ and her husband
At this point, appellant packed his clothes because she wanted went to Ben to help; and the third incident was in 1995 when the
him to leave. Seeing his packed clothes upon his return home, couple had already transferred to the house in Bilwang and she
Ben allegedly flew into a rage, dragged appellant outside of the saw that Ben’s hand was plastered as ‘the bone cracked.’
bedroom towards a drawer holding her by the neck, and told her
‘You might as well be killed so nobody would nag me.’ Appellant “Both mother and son claimed they brought Ben to a Pasar clinic
testified that she was aware that there was a gun inside the for medical intervention.
drawer but since Ben did not have the key to it, he got a three-
inch long blade cutter from his wallet. She however, ‘smashed’ “5. Arturo Basobas, a co-worker of Ben, testified that on
the arm of Ben with a pipe, causing him to drop the blade and November 15, 1995 ‘After we collected our salary, we went to the
his wallet. Appellant then ‘smashed’ Ben at his nape with the cock-fighting place of ISCO.’ They stayed there for three (3)
pipe as he was about to pick up the blade and his wallet. She hours, after which they went to ‘Uniloks’ and drank beer –
thereafter ran inside the bedroom. allegedly only two (2) bottles each. After drinking they bought
barbeque and went to the Genosa residence. Marivic was not
“Appellant, however, insisted that she ended the life of her there. He stayed a while talking with Ben, after which he went
husband by shooting him. She supposedly ‘distorted’ the drawer across the road to wait ‘for the runner and the usher of the
where the gun was and shot Ben. He did not die on the spot, masiao game because during that time, the hearing on masiao
though, but in the bedroom.”[7] (Citations omitted) numbers was rampant. I was waiting for the ushers and runners
so that I can place my bet.’ On his way home at about 9:00 in
the evening, he heard the Genosas arguing. They were
Version of the Defense quarreling loudly. Outside their house was one ‘Fredo’ who is
used by Ben to feed his fighting cocks. Basobas’ testimony on
the root of the quarrel, conveniently overheard by him was
Appellant relates her version of the facts in this manner: Marivic saying ‘I will never hesitate to kill you’, whilst Ben replied
‘Why kill me when I am innocent.’ Basobas thought they were
“1. Marivic and Ben Genosa were allegedly married on joking.
November 19, 1983. Prior to her marriage, Marivic had
graduated from San Carlos, Cebu City, obtaining a degree of “He did not hear them quarreling while he was across the road
Bachelor of Science in Business Administration, and was from the Genosa residence. Basobas admitted that he and Ben
working, at the time of her husband’s death, as a Secretary to were always at the cockpits every Saturday and Sunday. He
the Port Managers in Ormoc City. The couple had three (3) claims that he once told Ben ‘before when he was stricken with a
children: John Marben, Earl Pierre and Marie Bianca. bottle by Marivic Genosa’ that he should leave her and that Ben
would always take her back after she would leave him ‘so many
“2. Marivic and Ben had known each other since times’.
elementary school; they were neighbors in Bilwang; they were
classmates; and they were third degree cousins. Both sets of “Basobas could not remember when Marivic had hit Ben, but it
parents were against their relationship, but Ben was persistent was a long time that they had been quarreling. He said Ben
and tried to stop other suitors from courting her. Their closeness ‘even had a wound’ on the right forehead. He had known the
developed as he was her constant partner at fiestas. couple for only one (1) year.

“3. After their marriage, they lived first in the home of “6. Marivic testified that after the first year of marriage,
Ben’s parents, together with Ben’s brother, Alex, in Isabel, Ben became cruel to her and was a habitual drinker. She said
Leyte. In the first year of marriage, Marivic and Ben ‘lived he provoked her, he would slap her, sometimes he would pin her
happily’. But apparently, soon thereafter, the couple would down on the bed, and sometimes beat her.
quarrel often and their fights would become violent.
“These incidents happened several times and she would often
“4. Ben’s brother, Alex, testified for the prosecution that run home to her parents, but Ben would follow her and seek her
he could not remember when Ben and Marivic married. He said out, promising to change and would ask for her forgiveness.
that when Ben and Marivic quarreled, generally when Ben would She said after she would be beaten, she would seek medical
come home drunk, Marivic would inflict injuries on him. He said help from Dr. Dino Caing, Dr. Lucero and Dra. Cerillo. These
that in one incident in 1993 he saw Marivic holding a kitchen doctors would enter the injuries inflicted upon her by Ben into
knife after Ben had shouted for help as his left hand was covered their reports. Marivic said Ben would beat her or quarrel with her
with blood. Marivic left the house but after a week, she returned every time he was drunk, at least three times a week.
apparently having asked for Ben’s forgiveness. In another
incident in May 22, 1994, early morning, Alex and his father “7. In her defense, witnesses who were not so closely
apparently rushed to Ben’s aid again and saw blood from Ben’s related to Marivic, testified as to the abuse and violence she
forehead and Marivic holding an empty bottle. Ben and Marivic received at the hands of Ben.
17

‘7.1. Mr. Joe Barrientos, a fisherman, who was a [neighbor] of his patient ‘many times’ and had also received treatment from
the Genosas, testified that on November 15, 1995, he overheard other doctors. Dr. Caing testified that from July 6, 1989 until
a quarrel between Ben and Marivic. Marivic was shouting for November 9, 1995, there were six (6) episodes of physical
help and through the open jalousies, he saw the spouses injuries inflicted upon Marivic. These injuries were reported in
‘grappling with each other’. Ben had Marivic in a choke hold. He his Out-Patient Chart at the PHILPHOS Hospital. The
did not do anything, but had come voluntarily to testify. (Please prosecution admitted the qualifications of Dr. Caing and
note this was the same night as that testified to by Arturo considered him an expert witness.’
Busabos.[8])
xxx xxx xxx
‘7.2. Mr. Junnie Barrientos, also a fisherman, and the brother of
Mr. Joe Barrientos, testified that he heard his neighbor Marivic ‘Dr. Caing’s clinical history of the tension headache and
shouting on the night of November 15, 1995. He peeped hypertention of Marivic on twenty-three (23) separate
through the window of his hut which is located beside the occasions was marked at Exhibits ‘2’ and ‘2-B.’ The OPD Chart
Genosa house and saw ‘the spouses grappling with each other of Marivic at the Philphos Clinic which reflected all the
then Ben Genosa was holding with his both hands the neck of consultations made by Marivic and the six (6) incidents of
the accused, Marivic Genosa’. He said after a while, Marivic was physical injuries reported was marked as Exhibit ‘3.’
able to extricate he[r]self and enter the room of the children.
After that, he went back to work as he was to go fishing that “On cross-examination, Dr. Caing said that he is not a
evening. He returned at 8:00 the next morning. (Again, please psychiatrist, he could not say whether the injuries were directly
note that this was the same night as that testified to by Arturo related to the crime committed. He said it is only a psychiatrist
Basobas). who is qualified to examine the psychological make-up of the
patient, ‘whether she is capable of committing a crime or not.’
‘7.3. Mr. Teodoro Sarabia was a former neighbor of the
Genosas while they were living in Isabel, Leyte. His house was ‘7.6 Mr. Panfilo Tero, the barangay captain in the place where
located about fifty (50) meters from theirs. Marivic is his niece the Genosas resided, testified that about two (2) months before
and he knew them to be living together for 13 or 14 years. He Ben died, Marivic went to his office past 8:00 in the evening.
said the couple was always quarreling. Marivic confided in him She sought his help to settle or confront the Genosa couple who
that Ben would pawn items and then would use the money to were experiencing ‘family troubles’. He told Marivic to return in
gamble. One time, he went to their house and they were the morning, but he did not hear from her again and assumed
quarreling. Ben was so angry, but would be pacified ‘if ‘that they might have settled with each other or they might have
somebody would come.’ He testified that while Ben was alive forgiven with each other.’
‘he used to gamble and when he became drunk, he would go to
our house and he will say, ‘Teody’ because that was what he
xxx xxx xxx
used to call me, ‘mokimas ta,’ which means ‘let’s go and look for
a whore.’ Mr. Sarabia further testified that Ben ‘would box his
wife and I would see bruises and one time she ran to me, I “Marivic said she did not provoke her husband when she got
noticed a wound (the witness pointed to his right breast) as home that night it was her husband who began the provocation.
according to her a knife was stricken to her.’ Mr. Sarabia also Marivic said she was frightened that her husband would hurt her
said that once he saw Ben had been injured too. He said he and she wanted to make sure she would deliver her baby safely.
voluntarily testified only that morning. In fact, Marivic had to be admitted later at the Rizal Medical
Centre as she was suffering from eclampsia and hypertension,
and the baby was born prematurely on December 1, 1995.
‘7.4. Miss Ecel Arano, an 18-year old student, who is a cousin
of Marivic, testified that in the afternoon of November 15, 1995,
Marivic went to her house and asked her help to look for Ben. “Marivic testified that during her marriage she had tried to leave
They searched in the market place, several taverns and some her husband at least five (5) times, but that Ben would always
other places, but could not find him. She accompanied Marivic follow her and they would reconcile. Marivic said that the reason
home. Marivic wanted her to sleep with her in the Genosa why Ben was violent and abusive towards her that night was
house ‘because she might be battered by her husband.’ When because ‘he was crazy about his recent girlfriend, Lulu x x x
they got to the Genosa house at about 7:00 in the evening, Miss Rubillos.’
Arano said that ‘her husband was already there and was drunk.’
Miss Arano knew he was drunk ‘because of his staggering “On cross-examination, Marivic insisted she shot Ben with a gun;
walking and I can also detect his face.’ Marivic entered the she said that he died in the bedroom; that their quarrels could be
house and she heard them quarrel noisily. (Again, please note heard by anyone passing their house; that Basobas lied in his
that this is the same night as that testified to by Arturo Basobas) testimony; that she left for Manila the next day, November 16,
Miss Arano testified that this was not the first time Marivic had 1995; that she did not bother anyone in Manila, rented herself a
asked her to sleep in the house as Marivic would be afraid every room, and got herself a job as a field researcher under the alias
time her husband would come home drunk. At one time when ‘Marvelous Isidro’; she did not tell anyone that she was leaving
she did sleep over, she was awakened at 10:00 in the evening Leyte, she just wanted to have a safe delivery of her baby; and
when Ben arrived because the couple ‘were very noisy in the that she was arrested in San Pablo, Laguna.
sala and I had heard something was broken like a vase.’ She
said Marivic ran into her room and they locked the door. When ‘Answering questions from the Court, Marivic said that she threw
Ben couldn’t get in he got a chair and a knife and ‘showed us the the gun away; that she did not know what happened to the pipe
knife through the window grill and he scared us.’ She said that she used to ‘smash him once’; that she was wounded by Ben on
Marivic shouted for help, but no one came. On cross- her wrist with the bolo; and that two (2) hours after she was
examination, she said that when she left Marivic’s house on ‘whirled’ by Ben, he kicked her ‘ass’ and dragged her towards the
November 15, 1995, the couple were still quarreling. drawer when he saw that she had packed his things.’

‘7.5. Dr. Dino Caing, a physician testified that he and Marivic “9. The body of Ben Genosa was found on November 18,
were co-employees at PHILPHOS, Isabel, Leyte. Marivic was 1995 after an investigation was made of the foul odor emitting
18

from the Genosa residence. This fact was testified to by all the undersigned counsel filed an URGENT OMNIBUS MOTION
prosecution witnesses and some defense witnesses during the praying that the Honorable Court allow the exhumation of Ben
trial. Genosa and the re-examination of the cause of his death; allow
the examination of Marivic Genosa by qualified psychologists
“10. Dra. Refelina Y. Cerillo, a physician, was the and psychiatrists to determine her state of mind at the time she
Municipal Health Officer of Isabel, Leyte at the time of the killed her husband; and finally, to allow a partial re-opening of the
incident, and among her responsibilities as such was to take case a quo to take the testimony of said psychologists and
charge of all medico-legal cases, such as the examination of psychiatrists.
cadavers and the autopsy of cadavers. Dra. Cerillo is not a
forensic pathologist. She merely took the medical board exams “Attached to the URGENT OMNIBUS MOTION was a letter of
and passed in 1986. She was called by the police to go to the Dr. Raquel Fortun, then the only qualified forensic pathologist in
Genosa residence and when she got there, she saw ‘some the country, who opined that the description of the death wound
police officer and neighbor around.’ She saw Ben Genosa, (as culled from the post-mortem findings, Exhibit ‘A’) is more akin
covered by a blanket, lying in a semi-prone position with his back to a gunshot wound than a beating with a lead pipe.
to the door. He was wearing only a brief.
“17. In a RESOLUTION dated 29 September 2000, the
xxx xxx xxx Honorable Court partly granted Marivic’s URGENT OMNIBUS
MOTION and remanded the case ‘to the trial court for the
“Dra. Cerillo said that ‘there is only one injury and that is the reception of expert psychological and/or psychiatric opinion on
injury involving the skeletal area of the head’ which she the ‘battered woman syndrome’ plea, within ninety (90) days
described as a ‘fracture’. And that based on her examination, from notice, and, thereafter to forthwith report to this Court the
Ben had been dead 2 or 3 days. Dra. Cerillo did not testify as proceedings taken, together with the copies of the TSN and
to what caused his death. relevant documentary evidence, if any, submitted.’

“Dra. Cerillo was not cross-examined by defense counsel. “18. On 15 January 2001, Dra. Natividad A. Dayan
appeared and testified before the Hon. Fortunito L. Madrona,
“11. The Information, dated November 14, 1996, filed RTC-Branch 35, Ormoc City.
against Marivic Genosa charged her with the crime of
PARRICIDE committed ‘with intent to kill, with treachery and “Immediately before Dra. Dayan was sworn, the Court a
evidence premeditation, x x x wilfully, unlawfully and feloniously quo asked if she had interviewed Marivic Genosa. Dra. Dayan
attack, assault, hit and wound x x x her legitimate husband, with informed the Court that interviews were done at the Penal
the use of a hard deadly weapon x x x which caused his death.’ Institution in 1999, but that the clinical interviews and
psychological assessment were done at her clinic.
“12. Trial took place on 7 and 14 April 1997, 14 May 1997,
21 July 1997, 17, 22 and 23 September 1997, 12 November “Dra. Dayan testified that she has been a clinical psychologist for
1997, 15 and 16 December 1997, 22 May 1998, and 5 and 6 twenty (20) years with her own private clinic and connected
August 1998. presently to the De La Salle University as a professor. Before
this, she was the Head of the Psychology Department of the
“13. On 23 September 1998, or only fifty (50) days from Assumption College; a member of the faculty of Psychology at
the day of the last trial date, the Hon. Fortunito L. Madrona, the Ateneo de Manila University and St. Joseph’s College; and
Presiding Judge, RTC-Branch 35, Ormoc City, rendered a was the counseling psychologist of the National Defense
JUDGMENT finding Marivic guilty ‘beyond reasonable doubt’ of College. She has an AB in Psychology from the University of the
the crime of parricide, and further found treachery as an Philippines, a Master of Arts in Clinical [Counseling], Psychology
aggravating circumstance, thus sentencing her to the ultimate from the Ateneo, and a PhD from the U.P. She was the past
penalty of DEATH. president of the Psychological Association of the Philippines and
is a member of the American Psychological Association. She is
the secretary of the International Council of Psychologists from
“14. The case was elevated to this Honorable Court upon
about 68 countries; a member of the Forensic Psychology
automatic review and, under date of 24 January 2000, Marivic’s
Association; and a member of the ASEAN [Counseling]
trial lawyer, Atty. Gil Marvel P. Tabucanon, filed a Motion to
Association. She is actively involved with the Philippine Judicial
Withdraw as counsel, attaching thereto, as a precautionary
Academy, recently lecturing on the socio-demographic and
measure, two (2) drafts of Appellant’s Briefs he had prepared for
psychological profile of families involved in domestic violence
Marivic which, for reasons of her own, were not conformed to by
and nullity cases. She was with the Davide Commission doing
her.
research about Military Psychology. She has written a book
entitled ‘Energy Global Psychology’ (together with Drs. Allan Tan
“The Honorable Court allowed the withdrawal of Atty. Tabucanon and Allan Bernardo). The Genosa case is the first time she has
and permitted the entry of appearance of undersigned counsel. testified as an expert on battered women as this is the first case
of that nature.
“15. Without the knowledge of counsel, Marivic Genosa
wrote a letter dated 20 January 2000, to the Chief Justice, “Dra. Dayan testified that for the research she conducted, on the
coursing the same through Atty. Teresita G. Dimaisip, Deputy socio-demographic and psychological profile of families involved
Clerk of Court of Chief Judicial Records Office, wherein she in domestic violence, and nullity cases, she looked at about 500
submitted her ‘Brief without counsels’ to the Court. cases over a period of ten (10) years and discovered that ‘there
are lots of variables that cause all of this marital conflicts, from
“This letter was stamp-received by the Honorable Court on 4 domestic violence to infidelity, to psychiatric disorder.’
February 2000.
“Dra. Dayan described domestic violence to comprise of ‘a lot of
“16. In the meantime, under date of 17 February 2000, and incidents of psychological abuse, verbal abuse, and emotional
stamp-received by the Honorable Court on 19 February 2000, abuse to physical abuse and also sexual abuse.’
19

xxx xxx xxx “Dr. Pajarillo was a Diplomate of the Philippine Board of
Psychiatry; a Fellow of the Philippine Board of Psychiatry and a
“Dra. Dayan testified that in her studies, ‘the battered woman Fellow of the Philippine Psychiatry Association. He was in the
usually has a very low opinion of herself. She has a self- practice of psychiatry for thirty-eight (38) years. Prior to being in
defeating and self-sacrificing characteristics. x x x they usually private practice, he was connected with the Veterans Memorial
think very lowly of themselves and so when the violence would Medical Centre where he gained his training on psychiatry and
happen, they usually think that they provoke it, that they were neurology. After that, he was called to active duty in the Armed
the one who precipitated the violence, they provoke their spouse Forces of the Philippines, assigned to the V. Luna Medical
to be physically, verbally and even sexually abusive to them.’ Center for twenty six (26) years. Prior to his retirement from
Dra. Dayan said that usually a battered x x x comes from a government service, he obtained the rank of Brigadier General.
dysfunctional family or from ‘broken homes.’ He obtained his medical degree from the University of Santo
Tomas. He was also a member of the World Association of
“Dra. Dayan said that the batterer, just like the battered woman, Military Surgeons; the Quezon City Medical Society; the
‘also has a very low opinion of himself. But then emerges to Cagayan Medical Society; and the Philippine Association of
have superiority complex and it comes out as being very Military Surgeons.
arrogant, very hostile, very aggressive and very angry. They
also had (sic) a very low tolerance for frustrations. A lot of times “He authored ‘The Comparative Analysis of Nervous Breakdown
they are involved in vices like gambling, drinking and drugs. And in the Philippine Military Academy from the Period 1954 – 1978’
they become violent.’ The batterer also usually comes from a which was presented twice in international congresses. He also
dysfunctional family which over-pampers them and makes them authored ‘The Mental Health of the Armed Forces of the
feel entitled to do anything. Also, they see often how their Philippines 2000’, which was likewise published internationally
parents abused each other so ‘there is a lot of modeling of and locally. He had a medical textbook published on the use of
aggression in the family.’ Prasepam on a Parke-Davis grant; was the first to use
Enanthate (siquiline), on an E.R. Squibb grant; and he published
“Dra. Dayan testified that there are a lot of reasons why a the use of the drug Zopiclom in 1985-86.
battered woman does not leave her husband: poverty, self-blame
and guilt that she provoked the violence, the cycle itself which “Dr. Pajarillo explained that psychiatry deals with the functional
makes her hope her husband will change, the belief in her disorder of the mind and neurology deals with the ailment of the
obligations to keep the family intact at all costs for the sake of brain and spinal cord enlarged. Psychology, on the other hand,
the children. is a bachelor degree and a doctorate degree; while one has to
finish medicine to become a specialist in psychiatry.
xxx xxx xxx
“Even only in his 7th year as a resident in V. Luna Medical
“Dra. Dayan said that abused wives react differently to the Centre, Dr. Pajarillo had already encountered a suit involving
violence: some leave the house, or lock themselves in another violent family relations, and testified in a case in 1964. In the
room, or sometimes try to fight back triggering ‘physical violence Armed Forces of the Philippines, violent family disputes abound,
on both of them.’ She said that in a ‘normal marital relationship,’ and he has seen probably ten to twenty thousand cases. In
abuses also happen, but these are ‘not consistent, not chronic, those days, the primordial intention of therapy was
are not happening day in [and] day out.’ In an ‘abnormal marital reconciliation. As a result of his experience with domestic
relationship,’ the abuse occurs day in and day out, is long lasting violence cases, he became a consultant of the Battered Woman
and ‘even would cause hospitalization on the victim and even Office in Quezon City under Atty. Nenita Deproza.
death on the victim.’
“As such consultant, he had seen around forty (40) cases of
xxx xxx xxx severe domestic violence, where there is physical abuse: such
as slapping, pushing, verbal abuse, battering and boxing a
woman even to an unconscious state such that the woman is
“Dra. Dayan said that as a result of the battery of psychological
sometimes confined. The affliction of Post-Traumatic Stress
tests she administered, it was her opinion that Marivic fits the
Disorder ‘depends on the vulnerability of the victim.’ Dr. Pajarillo
profile of a battered woman because ‘inspite of her feeling of
said that if the victim is not very healthy, perhaps one episode of
self-confidence which we can see at times there are really
violence may induce the disorder; if the psychological stamina
feeling (sic) of loss, such feelings of humiliation which she sees
and physiologic constitutional stamina of the victim is stronger, ‘it
herself as damaged and as a broken person. And at the same
will take more repetitive trauma to precipitate the post-traumatic
time she still has the imprint of all the abuses that she had
stress disorder and this x x x is very dangerous.’
experienced in the past.’

“In psychiatry, the post-traumatic stress disorder is incorporated


xxx xxx xxx
under the ‘anxiety neurosis or neurologic anxcietism.’ It is
produced by ‘overwhelming brutality, trauma.’
“Dra. Dayan said Marivic thought of herself as a loving wife and
did not even consider filing for nullity or legal separation inspite
xxx xxx xxx
of the abuses. It was at the time of the tragedy that Marivic then
thought of herself as a victim.
“Dr. Pajarillo explained that with ‘neurotic anxiety’, the victim
relives the beating or trauma as if it were real, although she is
xxx xxx xxx
not actually being beaten at that time. She thinks ‘of nothing but
the suffering.’
“19. On 9 February 2001, Dr. Alfredo Pajarillo, a physician,
who has since passed away, appeared and testified before RTC-
xxx xxx xxx
Branch 35, Ormoc City.
20

“A woman who suffers battery has a tendency to become of treachery, because Ben Genosa was supposedly defenseless
neurotic, her emotional tone is unstable, and she is irritable and when he was killed -- lying in bed asleep when Marivic smashed
restless. She tends to become hard-headed and persistent. him with a pipe at the back of his head.
She has higher sensitivity and her ‘self-world’ is damaged.
The capital penalty having been imposed, the case was
elevated to this Court for automatic review.
“Dr. Pajarillo said that an abnormal family background relates to
an individual’s illness, such as the deprivation of the continuous
care and love of the parents. As to the batterer, he normally
‘internalizes what is around him within the environment.’ And it
becomes his own personality. He is very competitive; he is
aiming high all the time; he is so macho; he shows his strong
façade ‘but in it there are doubts in himself and prone to act Supervening Circumstances
without thinking.’

xxx xxx xxx On February 19, 2000, appellant filed an Urgent Omnibus
Motion praying that this Court allow (1) the exhumation of Ben
“Dr. Pajarillo emphasized that ‘even though without the presence Genosa and the reexamination of the cause of his death; (2) the
of the precipator (sic) or the one who administered the battering, examination of appellant by qualified psychologists and
that re-experiencing of the trauma occurred (sic) because the psychiatrists to determine her state of mind at the time she had
individual cannot control it. It will just come up in her mind or in killed her spouse; and (3) the inclusion of the said experts’
his mind.’ reports in the records of the case for purposes of the automatic
review or, in the alternative, a partial reopening of the case for
the lower court to admit the experts’ testimonies.
xxx xxx xxx
On September 29, 2000, this Court issued a Resolution
“Dr. Pajarillo said that a woman suffering post traumatic stress granting in part appellant’s Motion, remanding the case to the
disorder try to defend themselves, and ‘primarily with knives. trial court for the reception of expert psychological and/or
Usually pointed weapons or any weapon that is available in the psychiatric opinion on the “battered woman syndrome” plea; and
immediate surrounding or in a hospital x x x because that requiring the lower court to report thereafter to this Court the
abound in the household.’ He said a victim resorts to weapons proceedings taken as well as to submit copies of the TSN and
when she has ‘reached the lowest rock bottom of her life and additional evidence, if any.
there is no other recourse left on her but to act decisively.’
Acting on the Court’s Resolution, the trial judge authorized
the examination of Marivic by two clinical psychologists, Drs.
xxx xxx xxx
Natividad Dayan[10] and Alfredo Pajarillo,[11] supposedly experts
on domestic violence. Their testimonies, along with their
“Dr. Pajarillo testified that he met Marivic Genosa in his office in documentary evidence, were then presented to and admitted by
an interview he conducted for two (2) hours and seventeen (17) the lower court before finally being submitted to this Court to
minutes. He used the psychological evaluation and social case form part of the records of the case.[12]
studies as a help in forming his diagnosis. He came out with a
Psychiatric Report, dated 22 January 2001.

The Issues
xxx xxx xxx

“On cross-examination by the private prosecutor, Dr. Pajarillo Appellant assigns the following alleged errors of the trial
said that at the time she killed her husband Marivic’c mental court for this Court’s consideration:
condition was that she was ‘re-experiencing the trauma.’ He
said ‘that we are trying to explain scientifically that the re- “1. The trial court gravely erred in promulgating an
experiencing of the trauma is not controlled by Marivic. It will obviously hasty decision without reflecting on the evidence
just come in flashes and probably at that point in time that things adduced as to self-defense.
happened when the re-experiencing of the trauma flashed in her
mind.’ At the time he interviewed Marivic ‘she was more
“2. The trial court gravely erred in finding as a fact that
subdued, she was not super alert anymore x x x she is mentally
Ben and Marivic Genosa were legally married and that she was
stress (sic) because of the predicament she is involved.’
therefore liable for parricide.

xxx xxx xxx


“3. The trial court gravely erred finding the cause of death
to be by beating with a pipe.
“20. No rebuttal evidence or testimony was presented by
either the private or the public prosecutor. Thus, in accord with
“4. The trial court gravely erred in ignoring and
the Resolution of this Honorable Court, the records of the
disregarding evidence adduced from impartial and unbiased
partially re-opened trial a quo were elevated.”[9]
witnesses that Ben Genosa was a drunk, a gambler, a
womanizer and wife-beater; and further gravely erred in
concluding that Ben Genosa was a battered husband.
Ruling of the Trial Court
“5. The trial court gravely erred in not requiring testimony
from the children of Marivic Genosa.
Finding the proffered theory of self-defense untenable, the
RTC gave credence to the prosecution evidence that appellant
“6. The trial court gravely erred in concluding that
had killed the deceased while he was in bed sleeping. Further,
Marivic’s flight to Manila and her subsequent apologies were
the trial court appreciated the generic aggravating circumstance
21

indicia of guilt, instead of a clear attempt to save the life of her non-presentation of their marriage contract. In People v.
unborn child. Malabago,[16] this Court held:

“7. The trial court gravely erred in concluding that there “The key element in parricide is the relationship of the offender
was an aggravating circumstance of treachery. with the victim. In the case of parricide of a spouse, the best
proof of the relationship between the accused and the deceased
“8. The trial court gravely erred in refusing to re-evaluate is the marriage certificate. In the absence of a marriage
the traditional elements in determining the existence of self- certificate, however, oral evidence of the fact of marriage may be
defense and defense of foetus in this case, thereby erroneously considered by the trial court if such proof is not objected to.”
convicting Marivic Genosa of the crime of parricide and
condemning her to the ultimate penalty of death.”[13] Two of the prosecution witnesses -- namely, the mother and
the brother of appellant’s deceased spouse -- attested in court
In the main, the following are the essential legal issues: (1) that Ben had been married to Marivic.[17] The defense raised no
whether appellant acted in self-defense and in defense of her objection to these testimonies. Moreover, during her direct
fetus; and (2) whether treachery attended the killing of Ben examination, appellant herself made a judicial admission of her
Genosa. marriage to Ben.[18] Axiomatic is the rule that a judicial admission
is conclusive upon the party making it, except only when there is
a showing that (1) the admission was made through a palpable
mistake, or (2) no admission was in fact made.[19] Other than
The Court’s Ruling
merely attacking the non-presentation of the marriage contract,
the defense offered no proof that the admission made by
appellant in court as to the fact of her marriage to the deceased
The appeal is partly meritorious.
was made through a palpable mistake.

Third, under the circumstances of this case, the specific or


Collateral Factual Issues direct cause of Ben’s death -- whether by a gunshot or by
beating with a pipe -- has no legal consequence. As the Court
elucidated in its September 29, 2000 Resolution, “[c]onsidering
The first six assigned errors raised by appellant are factual that the appellant has admitted the fact of killing her husband
in nature, if not collateral to the resolution of the principal issues. and the acts of hitting his nape with a metal pipe and of shooting
As consistently held by this Court, the findings of the trial court him at the back of his head, the Court believes that exhumation
on the credibility of witnesses and their testimonies are entitled is unnecessary, if not immaterial, to determine which of said acts
to a high degree of respect and will not be disturbed on appeal in actually caused the victim’s death.” Determining which of these
the absence of any showing that the trial judge gravely abused admitted acts caused the death is not dispositive of the guilt or
his discretion or overlooked, misunderstood or misapplied defense of appellant.
material facts or circumstances of weight and substance that
Fourth, we cannot fault the trial court for not fully appreciating
could affect the outcome of the case.[14]
evidence that Ben was a drunk, gambler, womanizer and wife-
In appellant’s first six assigned items, we find no grave beater. Until this case came to us for automatic review, appellant
abuse of discretion, reversible error or misappreciation of had not raised the novel defense of “battered woman syndrome,” for
material facts that would reverse or modify the trial court’s which such evidence may have been relevant. Her theory of self-
disposition of the case. In any event, we will now briefly dispose defense was then the crucial issue before the trial court. As will be
of these alleged errors of the trial court. discussed shortly, the legal requisites of self-defense under
prevailing jurisprudence ostensibly appear inconsistent with the
First, we do not agree that the lower court promulgated “an surrounding facts that led to the death of the victim. Hence, his
obviously hasty decision without reflecting on the evidence personal character, especially his past behavior, did not constitute
adduced as to self-defense.” We note that in his 17-page vital evidence at the time.
Decision, Judge Fortunito L. Madrona summarized the
testimonies of both the prosecution and the defense witnesses Fifth, the trial court surely committed no error in not
and -- on the basis of those and of the documentary evidence on requiring testimony from appellant’s children. As correctly
record -- made his evaluation, findings and conclusions. He elucidated by the solicitor general, all criminal actions are
wrote a 3-page discourse assessing the testimony and the self- prosecuted under the direction and control of the public
defense theory of the accused. While she, or even this Court, prosecutor, in whom lies the discretion to determine which
may not agree with the trial judge’s conclusions, we cannot witnesses and evidence are necessary to present.[20] As the
peremptorily conclude, absent substantial evidence, that he former further points out, neither the trial court nor the
failed to reflect on the evidence presented. prosecution prevented appellant from presenting her children as
witnesses. Thus, she cannot now fault the lower court for not
Neither do we find the appealed Decision to have been requiring them to testify.
made in an “obviously hasty” manner. The Information had been
filed with the lower court on November 14, 1996. Thereafter, trial Finally, merely collateral or corroborative is the matter of
began and at least 13 hearings were held for over a year. It took whether the flight of Marivic to Manila and her subsequent
the trial judge about two months from the conclusion of trial to apologies to her brother-in-law are indicia of her guilt or are
promulgate his judgment. That he conducted the trial and attempts to save the life of her unborn child. Any reversible error
resolved the case with dispatch should not be taken against him, as to the trial court’s appreciation of these circumstances has
much less used to condemn him for being unduly hasty. If at all, little bearing on the final resolution of the case.
the dispatch with which he handled the case should be lauded.
In any case, we find his actions in substantial compliance with First Legal Issue:
his constitutional obligation.[15] Self-Defense and Defense of a Fetus

Second, the lower court did not err in finding as a fact that
Ben Genosa and appellant had been legally married, despite the Appellant admits killing Ben Genosa but, to avoid criminal
liability, invokes self-defense and/or defense of her unborn child.
22

When the accused admits killing the victim, it is incumbent upon for ending it. The battered woman usually realizes that she
her to prove any claimed justifying circumstance by clear and cannot reason with him, and that resistance would only
convincing evidence.[21] Well-settled is the rule that in criminal exacerbate her condition.
cases, self-defense (and similarly, defense of a stranger or third
At this stage, she has a sense of detachment from the
person) shifts the burden of proof from the prosecution to the
attack and the terrible pain, although she may later clearly
defense.[22]
remember every detail. Her apparent passivity in the face of
acute violence may be rationalized thus: the batterer is almost
always much stronger physically, and she knows from her past
The Battered Woman Syndrome painful experience that it is futile to fight back. Acute battering
incidents are often very savage and out of control, such that
innocent bystanders or intervenors are likely to get hurt.[30]
In claiming self-defense, appellant raises the novel theory
of the battered woman syndrome. While new in Philippine The final phase of the cycle of violence begins when the
jurisprudence, the concept has been recognized in foreign acute battering incident ends. During this tranquil period, the
jurisdictions as a form of self-defense or, at the least, incomplete couple experience profound relief. On the one hand, the batterer
self-defense.[23] By appreciating evidence that a victim or may show a tender and nurturing behavior towards his partner.
defendant is afflicted with the syndrome, foreign courts convey He knows that he has been viciously cruel and tries to make up
their “understanding of the justifiably fearful state of mind of a for it, begging for her forgiveness and promising never to beat
person who has been cyclically abused and controlled over a her again. On the other hand, the battered woman also tries to
period of time.”[24] convince herself that the battery will never happen again; that
her partner will change for the better; and that this “good, gentle
A battered woman has been defined as a woman “who is and caring man” is the real person whom she loves.
repeatedly subjected to any forceful physical or psychological
behavior by a man in order to coerce her to do something he A battered woman usually believes that she is the sole
wants her to do without concern for her rights. Battered women anchor of the emotional stability of the batterer. Sensing his
include wives or women in any form of intimate relationship with isolation and despair, she feels responsible for his well-being.
men. Furthermore, in order to be classified as a battered The truth, though, is that the chances of his reforming, or
woman, the couple must go through the battering cycle at least seeking or receiving professional help, are very slim, especially if
twice. Any woman may find herself in an abusive relationship she remains with him. Generally, only after she leaves him does
with a man once. If it occurs a second time, and she remains in he seek professional help as a way of getting her back. Yet, it is
the situation, she is defined as a battered woman.”[25] in this phase of remorseful reconciliation that she is most
thoroughly tormented psychologically.
Battered women exhibit common personality traits, such as
low self-esteem, traditional beliefs about the home, the family The illusion of absolute interdependency is well-entrenched
and the female sex role; emotional dependence upon the in a battered woman’s psyche. In this phase, she and her
dominant male; the tendency to accept responsibility for the batterer are indeed emotionally dependent on each other -- she
batterer’s actions; and false hopes that the relationship will for his nurturant behavior, he for her forgiveness. Underneath
improve.[26] this miserable cycle of “tension, violence and forgiveness,” each
partner may believe that it is better to die than to be separated.
More graphically, the battered woman syndrome is Neither one may really feel independent, capable of functioning
characterized by the so-called “cycle of violence,”[27] which has without the other.[31]
three phases: (1) the tension-building phase; (2) the acute
battering incident; and (3) the tranquil, loving (or, at least, History of Abuse
nonviolent) phase.[28] in the Present Case
During the tension-building phase, minor battering occurs
-- it could be verbal or slight physical abuse or another form of To show the history of violence inflicted upon appellant, the
hostile behavior. The woman usually tries to pacify the batterer defense presented several witnesses. She herself described her
through a show of kind, nurturing behavior; or by simply staying heart-rending experience as follows:
out of his way. What actually happens is that she allows herself
to be abused in ways that, to her, are comparatively minor. All “ATTY. TABUCANON
she wants is to prevent the escalation of the violence exhibited
Q How did you describe your marriage with Ben
by the batterer. This wish, however, proves to be double-edged,
Genosa?
because her “placatory” and passive behavior legitimizes his
belief that he has the right to abuse her in the first place. A In the first year, I lived with him happily but in the
subsequent year he was cruel to me and a
However, the techniques adopted by the woman in her
behavior of habitual drinker.
effort to placate him are not usually successful, and the verbal
and/or physical abuse worsens. Each partner senses the Q You said that in the subsequent year of your
imminent loss of control and the growing tension and despair. marriage, your husband was abusive to you and
Exhausted from the persistent stress, the battered woman soon cruel. In what way was this abusive and cruelty
withdraws emotionally. But the more she becomes emotionally manifested to you?
unavailable, the more the batterer becomes angry, oppressive
and abusive. Often, at some unpredictable point, the violence A He always provoke me in everything, he always
“spirals out of control” and leads to an acute battering incident.[29] slap me and sometimes he pinned me down on
the bed and sometimes beat me.
The acute battering incident is said to be characterized
by brutality, destructiveness and, sometimes, death. The Q How many times did this happen?
battered woman deems this incident as unpredictable, yet also A Several times already.
inevitable. During this phase, she has no control; only the
batterer may put an end to the violence. Its nature can be as Q What did you do when these things happen to
unpredictable as the time of its explosion, and so are his reasons you?
23

A I went away to my mother and I ran to my father Q Will you please read the physical findings
and we separate each other. together with the dates for the record.

Q What was the action of Ben Genosa towards you A 1. May 12, 1990 - physical findings are as
leaving home? follows: Hematoma (R) lower eyelid and redness
of eye. Attending physician: Dr. Lucero;
A He is following me, after that he sought after me.
2. March 10, 1992 - Contusion-Hematoma
Q What will happen when he follow you?
(L) lower arbital area, pain and contusion (R)
A He said he changed, he asked for forgiveness breast. Attending physician: Dr. Canora;
and I was convinced and after that I go to him
3. March 26, 1993 - Abrasion, Furuncle (L)
and he said ‘sorry’.
Axilla;
Q During those times that you were the recipient of
4. August 1, 1994 - Pain, mastitis (L) breast,
such cruelty and abusive behavior by your
2 to trauma. Attending physician: Dr. Caing;
husband, were you able to see a doctor?
5. April 17, 1995 - Trauma, tenderness (R)
A Yes, sir.
Shoulder. Attending physician: Dr. Canora; and
Q Who are these doctors?
6. June 5, 1995 - Swelling Abrasion (L) leg,
A The company physician, Dr. Dino Caing, Dr. multiple contusion Pregnancy. Attending
Lucero and Dra. Cerillo. physician: Dr. Canora.

Q Among the findings, there were two (2) incidents


xxx xxx xxx wherein you were the attending physician, is that
correct?
Q You said that you saw a doctor in relation to your
injuries? A Yes, sir.

A Yes, sir. Q Did you actually physical examine the accused?

Q Who inflicted these injuries? A Yes, sir.

A Of course my husband. Q Now, going to your finding no. 3 where you were
the one who attended the patient. What do you
Q You mean Ben Genosa? mean by abrasion furuncle left axilla?

A Yes, sir. A Abrasion is a skin wound usually when it comes


in contact with something rough substance if
xxx xxx xxx force is applied.

Q What is meant by furuncle axilla?


[Court] /to the witness
A It is secondary of the light infection over the
Q How frequent was the alleged cruelty that you abrasion.
said?
Q What is meant by pain mastitis secondary to
A Everytime he got drunk. trauma?
Q No, from the time that you said the cruelty or the A So, in this 4th episode of physical injuries there is
infliction of injury inflicted on your occurred, after an inflammation of left breast. So, [pain]
your marriage, from that time on, how frequent meaning there is tenderness. When your breast
was the occurrence? is traumatized, there is tenderness pain.
A Everytime he got drunk. Q So, these are objective physical injuries. Doctor?
Q Is it daily, weekly, monthly or how many times in a
month or in a week? xxx xxx xxx

A Three times a week.


Q Were you able to talk with the patient?
Q Do you mean three times a week he would beat
A Yes, sir.
you?
Q What did she tell you?
A Not necessarily that he would beat me but
sometimes he will just quarrel me.” [32] A As a doctor-patient relationship, we need to know
the cause of these injuries. And she told me that
Referring to his “Out-Patient Chart”[33] on Marivic Genosa at
it was done to her by her husband.
the Philphos Hospital, Dr. Dino D. Caing bolstered her foregoing
testimony on chronic battery in this manner: Q You mean, Ben Genosa?

“Q So, do you have a summary of those six (6) A Yes, sir.


incidents which are found in the chart of your
clinic? xxx xxx xxx
A Yes, sir.
ATTY. TABUCANON:
Q Who prepared the list of six (6) incidents, Doctor?

A I did.
24

Q By the way Doctor, were you able to physical A From what I deduced as part of our physical
examine the accused sometime in the month of examination of the patient is the family history in
November, 1995 when this incident happened? line of giving the root cause of what is causing
this disease. So, from the moment you ask to
A As per record, yes.
the patient all comes from the domestic problem.
Q What was the date?
Q You mean problem in her household?
A It was on November 6, 1995.
A Probably.
Q So, did you actually see the accused physically?
Q Can family trouble cause elevation of blood
A Yes, sir. pressure, Doctor?

Q On November 6, 1995, will you please tell this A Yes, if it is emotionally related and stressful it can
Honorable Court, was the patient pregnant? cause increases in hypertension which is
unfortunately does not response to the
A Yes, sir. medication.
Q Being a doctor, can you more engage at what Q In November 6, 1995, the date of the incident, did
stage of pregnancy was she? you take the blood pressure of the accused?
A Eight (8) months pregnant. A On November 6, 1995 consultation, the blood
pressure was 180/120.
Q So in other words, it was an advance stage of
pregnancy? Q Is this considered hypertension?
A Yes, sir. A Yes, sir, severe.
Q What was your November 6, 1995 examination, Q Considering that she was 8 months pregnant, you
was it an examination about her pregnancy or mean this is dangerous level of blood pressure?
for some other findings?
A It was dangerous to the child or to the fetus.” [34]
A No, she was admitted for hypertension headache
which complicates her pregnancy. Another defense witness, Teodoro Sarabia, a former
neighbor of the Genosas in Isabel, Leyte, testified that he had
Q When you said admitted, meaning she was seen the couple quarreling several times; and that on some
confined? occasions Marivic would run to him with bruises, confiding that
the injuries were inflicted upon her by Ben.[35]
A Yes, sir.
Ecel Arano also testified[36] that for a number of times she
Q For how many days?
had been asked by Marivic to sleep at the Genosa house,
A One day. because the latter feared that Ben would come home drunk and
hurt her. On one occasion that Ecel did sleep over, she was
Q Where? awakened about ten o’clock at night, because the couple “were
A At PHILPHOS Hospital. very noisy … and I heard something was broken like a vase.”
Then Marivic came running into Ecel’s room and locked the
door. Ben showed up by the window grill atop a chair, scaring
xxx xxx xxx
them with a knife.

Q Lets go back to the clinical history of Marivic On the afternoon of November 15, 1995, Marivic again
Genosa. You said that you were able to asked her help -- this time to find Ben -- but they were unable to.
examine her personally on November 6, 1995 They returned to the Genosa home, where they found him
and she was 8 months pregnant. already drunk. Again afraid that he might hurt her, Marivic
asked her to sleep at their house. Seeing his state of
What is this all about?
drunkenness, Ecel hesitated; and when she heard the couple
A Because she has this problem of tension start arguing, she decided to leave.
headache secondary to hypertension and I think
On that same night that culminated in the death of Ben
I have a record here, also the same period from
Genosa, at least three other witnesses saw or heard the couple
1989 to 1995, she had a consultation for twenty-
quarreling.[37] Marivic relates in detail the following backdrop of
three (23) times.
the fateful night when life was snuffed out of him, showing in the
Q For what? process a vivid picture of his cruelty towards her:

A Tension headache. “ATTY. TABUCANON:

Q Can we say that specially during the latter Q Please tell this Court, can you recall the incident
consultation, that the patient had hypertension? in November 15, 1995 in the evening?

A The patient definitely had hypertension. It was A Whole morning and in the afternoon, I was in the
refractory to our treatment. She does not office working then after office hours, I boarded
response when the medication was given to her, the service bus and went to Bilwang. When I
because tension headache is more or less reached Bilwang, I immediately asked my son,
stress related and emotional in nature. where was his father, then my second child said,
‘he was not home yet’. I was worried because
Q What did you deduce of tension headache when that was payday, I was anticipating that he was
you said is emotional in nature? gambling. So while waiting for him, my eldest
25

son arrived from school, I prepared dinner for A When I arrived home, he was there already in his
my children. usual behavior.

Q This is evening of November 15, 1995? Q Will you tell this Court what was his disposition?

A Yes, sir. A He was drunk again, he was yelling in his usual


unruly behavior.
Q What time did Ben Genosa arrive?
Q What was he yelling all about?
A When he arrived, I was not there, I was in Isabel
looking for him. A His usual attitude when he got drunk.

Q So when he arrived you were in Isabel looking for Q You said that when you arrived, he was drunk and
him? yelling at you? What else did he do if any?

A Yes, sir. A He is nagging at me for following him and he


dared me to quarrel him.
Q Did you come back to your house?
Q What was the cause of his nagging or quarreling
A Yes, sir.
at you if you know?
Q By the way, where was your conjugal residence
A He was angry at me because I was following x x
situated this time?
x him, looking for him. I was just worried he
A Bilwang. might be overly drunk and he would beat me
again.
Q Is this your house or you are renting?
Q You said that he was yelling at you, what else, did
A Renting. he do to you if any?
Q What time were you able to come back in your A He was nagging at me at that time and I just
residence at Bilwang? ignore him because I want to avoid trouble for
fear that he will beat me again. Perhaps he was
A I went back around almost 8:00 o’clock.
disappointed because I just ignore him of his
Q What happened when you arrived in your provocation and he switch off the light and I said
residence? to him, ‘why did you switch off the light when the
children were there.’ At that time I was also
A When I arrived home with my cousin Ecel whom I attending to my children who were doing their
requested to sleep with me at that time because assignments. He was angry with me for not
I had fears that he was again drunk and I was answering his challenge, so he went to the
worried that he would again beat me so I kitchen and [got] a bolo and cut the antenna wire
requested my cousin to sleep with me, but she to stop me from watching television.
resisted because she had fears that the same
thing will happen again last year. Q What did he do with the bolo?

Q Who was this cousin of yours who you requested A He cut the antenna wire to keep me from
to sleep with you? watching T.V.

A Ecel Araño, the one who testified. Q What else happened after he cut the wire?

Q Did Ecel sleep with you in your house on that A He switch off the light and the children were
evening? shouting because they were scared and he was
already holding the bolo.
A No, because she expressed fears, she said her
father would not allow her because of Ben. Q How do you described this bolo?

Q During this period November 15, 1995, were you A 1 1/2 feet.
pregnant?
Q What was the bolo used for usually?
A Yes, 8 months.
A For chopping meat.
Q How advance was your pregnancy?
Q You said the children were scared, what else
A Eight (8) months. happened as Ben was carrying that bolo?

Q Was the baby subsequently born? A He was about to attack me so I run to the room.

A Yes, sir. Q What do you mean that he was about to attack


you?
Q What’s the name of the baby you were carrying at
that time? A When I attempt to run he held my hands and he
whirled me and I fell to the bedside.
A Marie Bianca.
Q So when he whirled you, what happened to you?
Q What time were you able to meet personally your
husband? A I screamed for help and then he left.

A Yes, sir. Q You said earlier that he whirled you and you fell
on the bedside?
Q What time?
A Yes, sir.
26

Q You screamed for help and he left, do you know (The witness at this juncture is crying intensely).
where he was going?
xxx xxx xxx
A Outside perhaps to drink more.

Q When he left what did you do in that particular ATTY. TABUCANON:


time?
Q Talking of drawer, is this drawer outside your
A I packed all his clothes. room?
Q What was your reason in packing his clothes? A Outside.
A I wanted him to leave us. Q In what part of the house?
Q During this time, where were your children, what A Dining.
were their reactions?
Q Where were the children during that time?
A After a couple of hours, he went back again and
he got angry with me for packing his clothes, A My children were already asleep.
then he dragged me again of the bedroom Q You mean they were inside the room?
holding my neck.
A Yes, sir.
Q You said that when Ben came back to your
house, he dragged you? How did he drag you? Q You said that he dropped the blade, for the record
will you please describe this blade about 3
COURT INTERPRETER: inches long, how does it look like?
The witness demonstrated to the Court by using her A Three (3) inches long and 1/2 inch wide.
right hand flexed forcibly in her front neck)
Q Is it a flexible blade?
A And he dragged me towards the door backward.
A It’s a cutter.
ATTY. TABUCANON:
Q How do you describe the blade, is it sharp both
Q Where did he bring you? edges?
A Outside the bedroom and he wanted to get A Yes, because he once used it to me.
something and then he kept on shouting at me
that ‘you might as well be killed so there will be Q How did he do it?
nobody to nag me.’
A He wanted to cut my throat.
Q So you said that he dragged you towards the
Q With the same blade?
drawer?
A Yes, sir, that was the object used when he
A Yes, sir.
intimidate me.” [38]
Q What is there in the drawer?
In addition, Dra. Natividad Dayan was called by the RTC to
A I was aware that it was a gun. testify as an expert witness to assist it in understanding the
psyche of a battered person. She had met with Marivic Genosa
COURT INTERPRETER: for five sessions totaling about seventeen hours. Based on their
(At this juncture the witness started crying). talks, the former briefly related the latter’s ordeal to the court a
quo as follows:
ATTY. TABUCANON:
“Q: What can you say, that you found Marivic as a
Q Were you actually brought to the drawer? battered wife? Could you in layman’s term
describe to this Court what her life was like as
A Yes, sir.
said to you?
Q What happened when you were brought to that
A: What I remember happened then was it was
drawer?
more than ten years, that she was suffering
A He dragged me towards the drawer and he was emotional anguish. There were a lot of
about to open the drawer but he could not open instances of abuses, to emotional abuse, to
it because he did not have the key then he verbal abuse and to physical abuse. The
pulled his wallet which contained a blade about husband had a very meager income, she was
3 inches long and I was aware that he was going the one who was practically the bread earner of
to kill me and I smashed his arm and then the the family. The husband was involved in a lot of
wallet and the blade fell. The one he used to vices, going out with barkadas, drinking, even
open the drawer I saw, it was a pipe about that womanizing being involved in cockfight and
long, and when he was about to pick-up the going home very angry and which will trigger a
wallet and the blade, I smashed him then I ran to lot of physical abuse. She also had the
the other room, and on that very moment experience a lot of taunting from the husband for
everything on my mind was to pity on myself, the reason that the husband even accused her
then the feeling I had on that very moment was of infidelity, the husband was saying that the
the same when I was admitted in PHILPHOS child she was carrying was not his own. So she
Clinic, I was about to vomit. was very angry, she was at the same time very
depressed because she was also aware, almost
COURT INTERPRETER:
27

like living in purgatory or even hell when it was physical battering, emotional battering, all the
happening day in and day out.” [39] psychological abuses that she had experienced
from her husband.
In cross-examining Dra. Dayan, the public prosecutor not
merely elicited, but wittingly or unwittingly put forward, additional Q I do believe that she is a battered wife. Was she
supporting evidence as shown below: extremely battered?

“Q In your first encounter with the appellant in this A Sir, it is an extreme form of battering. Yes.[40]
case in 1999, where you talked to her about
Parenthetically, the credibility of appellant was
three hours, what was the most relevant
demonstrated as follows:
information did you gather?
“Q And you also said that you administered [the]
A The most relevant information was the tragedy
objective personality test, what x x x [is this] all
that happened. The most important information
about?
were escalating abuses that she had
experienced during her marital life. A The objective personality test is the Millon
Clinical Multiaxial Inventory. The purpose of that
Q Before you met her in 1999 for three hours, we
test is to find out about the lying prone[ne]ss of
presume that you already knew of the facts of
the person.
the case or at least you have substantial
knowledge of the facts of the case? Q What do you mean by that?
A I believe I had an idea of the case, but I do not A Meaning, am I dealing with a client who is telling
know whether I can consider them as me the truth, or is she someone who can
substantial. exaggerate or x x x [will] tell a lie[?]

xxx xxx xxx Q And what did you discover on the basis of this
objective personality test?

Q Did you gather an information from Marivic that A She was a person who passed the honesty test.
on the side of her husband they were fond of Meaning she is a person that I can trust. That
battering their wives? the data that I’m gathering from her are the
truth.”[41]
A I also heard that from her?
The other expert witness presented by the defense, Dr.
Q You heard that from her?
Alfredo Pajarillo, testified on his Psychiatric Report,[42] which was
A Yes, sir. based on his interview and examination of Marivic Genosa. The
Report said that during the first three years of her marriage to
Q Did you ask for a complete example who are the Ben, everything looked good -- the atmosphere was fine, normal
relatives of her husband that were fond of and happy -- until “Ben started to be attracted to other girls and
battering their wives? was also enticed in[to] gambling[,] especially cockfighting. x x x.
A What I remember that there were brothers of her At the same time Ben was often joining his barkada in drinking
husband who are also battering their wives. sprees.”

Q Did she not inform you that there was an instance The drinking sprees of Ben greatly changed the attitude he
that she stayed in a hotel in Ormoc where her showed toward his family, particularly to his wife. The Report
husband followed her and battered [her] several continued: “At first, it was verbal and emotional abuses but as
times in that room? time passed, he became physically abusive. Marivic claimed
that the viciousness of her husband was progressive every time
A She told me about that. he got drunk. It was a painful ordeal Marivic had to anticipate
whenever she suspected that her husband went for a drinking
Q Did she inform you in what hotel in Ormoc?
[spree]. They had been married for twelve years[;] and
A Sir, I could not remember but I was told that she practically more than eight years, she was battered and
was battered in that room. maltreated relentlessly and mercilessly by her husband
whenever he was drunk.”
Q Several times in that room?
Marivic sought the help of her mother-in-law, but her efforts
A Yes, sir. What I remember was that there is no were in vain. Further quoting from the Report, “[s]he also sought
problem about being battered, it really the advice and help of close relatives and well-meaning friends
happened. in spite of her feeling ashamed of what was happening to her.
But incessant battering became more and more frequent and
Q Being an expert witness, our jurisprudence is not
more severe. x x x.”[43]
complete on saying this matter. I think that is
the first time that we have this in the Philippines, From the totality of evidence presented, there is indeed no
what is your opinion? doubt in the Court’s mind that Appellant Marivic Genosa was a
severely abused person.
A Sir, my opinion is, she is really a battered wife
and in this kind happened, it was really a self-
defense. I also believe that there had been
provocation and I also believe that she became Effect of Battery on Appellant
a disordered person. She had to suffer anxiety
reaction because of all the battering that
happened and so she became an abnormal Because of the recurring cycles of violence experienced by
person who had lost she’s not during the time the abused woman, her state of mind metamorphoses. In
and that is why it happened because of all the determining her state of mind, we cannot rely merely on the
28

judgment of an ordinary, reasonable person who is evaluating to believe that anything she can do will have a predictable
the events immediately surrounding the incident. A Canadian positive effect.”[52]
court has aptly pointed out that expert evidence on the
A study[53] conducted by Martin Seligman, a psychologist at
psychological effect of battering on wives and common law
the University of Pennsylvania, found that “even if a person has
partners are both relevant and necessary. “How can the mental
control over a situation, but believes that she does not, she will
state of the appellant be appreciated without it? The average
be more likely to respond to that situation with coping responses
member of the public may ask: Why would a woman put up with
rather than trying to escape.” He said that it was the cognitive
this kind of treatment? Why should she continue to live with
aspect -- the individual’s thoughts -- that proved all-important.
such a man? How could she love a partner who beat her to the
He referred to this phenomenon as “learned helplessness.”
point of requiring hospitalization? We would expect the woman
“[T]he truth or facts of a situation turn out to be less important
to pack her bags and go. Where is her self-respect? Why does
than the individual’s set of beliefs or perceptions concerning the
she not cut loose and make a new life for herself? Such is the
situation. Battered women don’t attempt to leave the battering
reaction of the average person confronted with the so-called
situation, even when it may seem to outsiders that escape is
‘battered wife syndrome.’”[44]
possible, because they cannot predict their own safety; they
To understand the syndrome properly, however, one’s believe that nothing they or anyone else does will alter their
viewpoint should not be drawn from that of an ordinary, terrible circumstances.”[54]
reasonable person. What goes on in the mind of a person who
Thus, just as the battered woman believes that she is
has been subjected to repeated, severe beatings may not be
somehow responsible for the violent behavior of her partner, she
consistent with -- nay, comprehensible to -- those who have not
also believes that he is capable of killing her, and that there is no
been through a similar experience. Expert opinion is essential to
escape.[55] Battered women feel unsafe, suffer from pervasive
clarify and refute common myths and misconceptions about
anxiety, and usually fail to leave the relationship. [56] Unless a
battered women.[45]
shelter is available, she stays with her husband, not only
The theory of BWS formulated by Lenore Walker, as well because she typically lacks a means of self-support, but also
as her research on domestic violence, has had a significant because she fears that if she leaves she would be found and
impact in the United States and the United Kingdom on the hurt even more.[57]
treatment and prosecution of cases, in which a battered woman
In the instant case, we meticulously scoured the records for
is charged with the killing of her violent partner. The
specific evidence establishing that appellant, due to the repeated
psychologist explains that the cyclical nature of the violence
abuse she had suffered from her spouse over a long period of
inflicted upon the battered woman immobilizes the latter’s “ability
time, became afflicted with the battered woman syndrome. We,
to act decisively in her own interests, making her feel trapped in
however, failed to find sufficient evidence that would support
the relationship with no means of escape.”[46] In her years of
such a conclusion. More specifically, we failed to find ample
research, Dr. Walker found that “the abuse often escalates at the
evidence that would confirm the presence of the essential
point of separation and battered women are in greater danger of
characteristics of BWS.
dying then.”[47]
The defense fell short of proving all three phases of the
Corroborating these research findings, Dra. Dayan said
“cycle of violence” supposedly characterizing the relationship of
that “the battered woman usually has a very low opinion of
Ben and Marivic Genosa. No doubt there were acute battering
herself. She has x x x self-defeating and self-sacrificing
incidents. In relating to the court a quo how the fatal incident
characteristics. x x x [W]hen the violence would happen, they
that led to the death of Ben started, Marivic perfectly described
usually think that they provoke[d] it, that they were the one[s]
the tension-building phase of the cycle. She was able to explain
who precipitated the violence[; that] they provoke[d] their spouse
in adequate detail the typical characteristics of this stage.
to be physically, verbally and even sexually abusive to them.”[48]
However, that single incident does not prove the existence of the
According to Dra. Dayan, there are a lot of reasons why a syndrome. In other words, she failed to prove that in at least
battered woman does not readily leave an abusive partner -- another battering episode in the past, she had gone through a
poverty, self-blame and guilt arising from the latter’s belief that similar pattern.
she provoked the violence, that she has an obligation to keep
How did the tension between the partners usually arise or
the family intact at all cost for the sake of their children, and that
build up prior to acute battering? How did Marivic normally
she is the only hope for her spouse to change.[49]
respond to Ben’s relatively minor abuses? What means did she
The testimony of another expert witness, Dr. Pajarillo, is employ to try to prevent the situation from developing into the
also helpful. He had previously testified in suits involving violent next (more violent) stage?
family relations, having evaluated “probably ten to twenty
Neither did appellant proffer sufficient evidence in regard to
thousand” violent family disputes within the Armed Forces of the
the third phase of the cycle. She simply mentioned that she
Philippines, wherein such cases abounded. As a result of his
would usually run away to her mother’s or father’s house; [58]that
experience with domestic violence cases, he became a
Ben would seek her out, ask for her forgiveness and promise to
consultant of the Battered Woman Office in Quezon City. As
change; and that believing his words, she would return to their
such, he got involved in about forty (40) cases of severe
common abode.
domestic violence, in which the physical abuse on the woman
would sometimes even lead to her loss of consciousness.[50] Did she ever feel that she provoked the violent incidents
between her and her spouse? Did she believe that she was the
Dr. Pajarillo explained that “overwhelming brutality, trauma”
only hope for Ben to reform? And that she was the sole support
could result in posttraumatic stress disorder, a form of “anxiety
of his emotional stability and well-being? Conversely, how
neurosis or neurologic anxietism.”[51] After being repeatedly and
dependent was she on him? Did she feel helpless and trapped in
severely abused, battered persons “may believe that they are
their relationship? Did both of them regard death as preferable
essentially helpless, lacking power to change their situation. x x
to separation?
x [A]cute battering incidents can have the effect of stimulating
the development of coping responses to the trauma at the In sum, the defense failed to elicit from appellant herself
expense of the victim’s ability to muster an active response to try her factual experiences and thoughts that would clearly and fully
to escape further trauma. Furthermore, x x x the victim ceases demonstrate the essential characteristics of the syndrome.
29

The Court appreciates the ratiocinations given by the required. Incidents of domestic battery usually have a
expert witnesses for the defense. Indeed, they were able to predictable pattern. To require the battered person to await an
explain fully, albeit merely theoretically and scientifically, how the obvious, deadly attack before she can defend her life “would
personality of the battered woman usually evolved or amount to sentencing her to ‘murder by installment.’”[65] Still,
deteriorated as a result of repeated and severe beatings inflicted impending danger (based on the conduct of the victim in
upon her by her partner or spouse. They corroborated each previous battering episodes) prior to the defendant’s use of
other’s testimonies, which were culled from their numerous deadly force must be shown. Threatening behavior or
studies of hundreds of actual cases. However, they failed to communication can satisfy the required imminence of danger.
[66]
present in court the factual experiences and thoughts that Considering such circumstances and the existence of BWS,
appellant had related to them -- if at all -- based on which they self-defense may be appreciated.
concluded that she had BWS.
We reiterate the principle that aggression, if not continuous,
We emphasize that in criminal cases, all the elements of a does not warrant self-defense.[67] In the absence of such
modifying circumstance must be proven in order to be aggression, there can be no self-defense -- complete or
appreciated. To repeat, the records lack supporting evidence incomplete -- on the part of the victim.[68] Thus, Marivic’s killing of
that would establish all the essentials of the battered woman Ben was not completely justified under the circumstances.
syndrome as manifested specifically in the case of the Genosas.

Mitigating Circumstances Present


BWS as Self-Defense

In any event, all is not lost for appellant. While she did not
In any event, the existence of the syndrome in a raise any other modifying circumstances that would alter her
relationship does not in itself establish the legal right of the penalty, we deem it proper to evaluate and appreciate in her
woman to kill her abusive partner. Evidence must still be favor circumstances that mitigate her criminal liability. It is a
considered in the context of self-defense.[59] hornbook doctrine that an appeal in a criminal case opens it
wholly for review on any issue, including that which has not been
From the expert opinions discussed earlier, the Court
raised by the parties.[69]
reckons further that crucial to the BWS defense is the state of
mind of the battered woman at the time of the offense [60] -- she From several psychological tests she had administered to
must have actually feared imminent harm from her batterer and Marivic, Dra. Dayan, in her Psychological Evaluation Report
honestly believed in the need to kill him in order to save her life. dated November 29, 2000, opined as follows:

Settled in our jurisprudence, however, is the rule that the


“This is a classic case of a Battered Woman Syndrome. The
one who resorts to self-defense must face a real threat on one’s
repeated battering Marivic experienced with her husband
life; and the peril sought to be avoided must be imminent and
constitutes a form of [cumulative] provocation which broke down
actual, not merely imaginary.[61] Thus, the Revised Penal Code
her psychological resistance and natural self-control. It is very
provides the following requisites and effect of self-defense:[62]
clear that she developed heightened sensitivity to sight of
impending danger her husband posed continuously. Marivic truly
“Art. 11. Justifying circumstances. -- The following do not incur
experienced at the hands of her abuser husband a state of
any criminal liability:
psychological paralysis which can only be ended by an act of
violence on her part.” [70]
“1. Anyone who acts in defense of his person or rights,
provided that the following circumstances concur;
Dr. Pajarillo corroborates the findings of Dra. Dayan. He
explained that the effect of “repetitious pain taking, repetitious
First. Unlawful aggression; battering, [and] repetitious maltreatment” as well as the severity
Second. Reasonable necessity of the means and the prolonged administration of the battering is
employed to prevent or repel it; posttraumatic stress disorder.[71] Expounding thereon, he said:
Third. Lack of sufficient provocation on the part of the person
defending himself.” “Q What causes the trauma, Mr. Witness?

A What causes the trauma is probably the


Unlawful aggression is the most essential element of self- repetitious battering. Second, the severity of the
defense.[63] It presupposes actual, sudden and unexpected attack battering. Third, the prolonged administration of
-- or an imminent danger thereof -- on the life or safety of a battering or the prolonged commission of the
person.[64] In the present case, however, according to the battering and the psychological and
testimony of Marivic herself, there was a sufficient time interval constitutional stamina of the victim and another
between the unlawful aggression of Ben and her fatal attack one is the public and social support available to
upon him. She had already been able to withdraw from his the victim. If nobody is interceding, the more
violent behavior and escape to their children’s bedroom. During she will go to that disorder....
that time, he apparently ceased his attack and went to bed. The
reality or even the imminence of the danger he posed had ended
xxx xxx xxx
altogether. He was no longer in a position that presented an
actual threat on her life or safety.
Q You referred a while ago to severity. What are the
Had Ben still been awaiting Marivic when she came out of qualifications in terms of severity of the
their children’s bedroom -- and based on past violent incidents, postraumatic stress disorder, Dr. Pajarillo?
there was a great probability that he would still have pursued her
A The severity is the most severe continuously to
and inflicted graver harm -- then, the imminence of the real
trig[g]er this post[t]raumatic stress disorder is
threat upon her life would not have ceased yet. Where the
injury to the head, banging of the head like that.
brutalized person is already suffering from BWS, further
It is usually the very very severe stimulus that
evidence of actual physical assault at the time of the killing is not
30

precipitate this post[t]raumatic stress disorder. of passion provoked by prior unjust or improper acts or by a
Others are suffocating the victim like holding a legitimate stimulus so powerful as to overcome reason. [77] To
pillow on the face, strangulating the individual, appreciate this circumstance, the following requisites should
suffocating the individual, and boxing the concur: (1) there is an act, both unlawful and sufficient to
individual. In this situation therefore, the victim produce such a condition of mind; and (2) this act is not far
is heightened to painful stimulus, like for removed from the commission of the crime by a considerable
example she is pregnant, she is very susceptible length of time, during which the accused might recover her
because the woman will not only protect herself, normal equanimity.[78]
she is also to protect the fetus. So the anxiety is
Here, an acute battering incident, wherein Ben Genosa
heightened to the end [sic] degree.
was the unlawful aggressor, preceded his being killed by
Q But in terms of the gravity of the disorder, Mr. Marivic. He had further threatened to kill her while dragging her
Witness, how do you classify? by the neck towards a cabinet in which he had kept a gun. It
should also be recalled that she was eight months pregnant at
A We classify the disorder as [acute], or chronic or
the time. The attempt on her life was likewise on that of her
delayed or [a]typical.
fetus.[79]His abusive and violent acts, an aggression which was
Q Can you please describe this pre[-]classification directed at the lives of both Marivic and her unborn child,
you called delayed or [atypical]? naturally produced passion and obfuscation overcoming her
reason. Even though she was able to retreat to a separate
A The acute is the one that usually require only one room, her emotional and mental state continued. According to
battering and the individual will manifest now a her, she felt her blood pressure rise; she was filled with feelings
severe emotional instability, higher irritability of self-pity and of fear that she and her baby were about to die.
remorse, restlessness, and fear and probably in In a fit of indignation, she pried open the cabinet drawer where
most [acute] cases the first thing will be Ben kept a gun, then she took the weapon and used it to shoot
happened to the individual will be thinking of him.
suicide.
The confluence of these events brings us to the conclusion
Q And in chronic cases, Mr. Witness? that there was no considerable period of time within which
Marivic could have recovered her normal equanimity. Helpful is
A The chronic cases is this repetitious battering,
Dr. Pajarillo’s testimony[80] that with “neurotic anxiety” -- a
repetitious maltreatment, any prolonged, it is
psychological effect on a victim of “overwhelming brutality [or]
longer than six (6) months. The [acute] is only
trauma” -- the victim relives the beating or trauma as if it were
the first day to six (6) months. After this six (6)
real, although she is not actually being beaten at the time. She
months you become chronic. It is stated in the
cannot control “re-experiencing the whole thing, the most vicious
book specifically that after six (6) months is
and the trauma that she suffered.” She thinks “of nothing but the
chronic. The [a]typical one is the repetitious
suffering.” Such reliving which is beyond the control of a person
battering but the individual who is abnormal and
under similar circumstances, must have been what Marivic
then become normal. This is how you get
experienced during the brief time interval and prevented her from
neurosis from neurotic personality of these
recovering her normal equanimity. Accordingly, she should
cases of post[t]raumatic stress disorder.” [72]
further be credited with the mitigating circumstance of passion
Answering the questions propounded by the trial judge, the and obfuscation.
expert witness clarified further:
It should be clarified that these two circumstances --
“Q But just the same[,] neurosis especially on psychological paralysis as well as passion and obfuscation -- did
battered woman syndrome x x x affects x x x not arise from the same set of facts.
his or her mental capacity?
On the one hand, the first circumstance arose from the
A Yes, your Honor. cyclical nature and the severity of the battery inflicted by the
batterer-spouse upon appellant. That is, the repeated beatings
Q As you were saying[,] it x x x obfuscated her over a period of time resulted in her psychological paralysis,
rationality? which was analogous to an illness diminishing the exercise of
A Of course obfuscated.”[73] her will power without depriving her of consciousness of her
acts.
In sum, the cyclical nature and the severity of the violence
inflicted upon appellant resulted in “cumulative provocation The second circumstance, on the other hand, resulted from
which broke down her psychological resistance and natural self- the violent aggression he had inflicted on her prior to the killing.
control,” “psychological paralysis,” and “difficulty in concentrating That the incident occurred when she was eight months pregnant
or impairment of memory.” with their child was deemed by her as an attempt not only on her
life, but likewise on that of their unborn child. Such perception
Based on the explanations of the expert witnesses, such naturally produced passion and obfuscation on her part.
manifestations were analogous to an illness that diminished the
exercise by appellant of her will power without, however, Second Legal Issue:
depriving her of consciousness of her acts. There was, thus, a Treachery
resulting diminution of her freedom of action, intelligence or
intent. Pursuant to paragraphs 9[74] and 10[75] of Article 13 of the
Revised Penal Code, this circumstance should be taken in her There is treachery when one commits any of the crimes
favor and considered as a mitigating factor. [76] against persons by employing means, methods or forms in the
execution thereof without risk to oneself arising from the defense
In addition, we also find in favor of appellant the that the offended party might make.[81] In order to qualify an act
extenuating circumstance of having acted upon an impulse so as treacherous, the circumstances invoked must be proven as
powerful as to have naturally produced passion and indubitably as the killing itself; they cannot be deduced from
obfuscation. It has been held that this state of mind is present mere inferences, or conjectures, which have no place in the
when a crime is committed as a result of an uncontrollable burst
31

appreciation of evidence.[82] Because of the gravity of the Q You said that he dropped the blade, for the record
resulting offense, treachery must be proved as conclusively as will you please describe this blade about 3
the killing itself.[83] inches long, how does it look like?

Ruling that treachery was present in the instant case, the A Three (3) inches long and ½ inch wide.
trial court imposed the penalty of death upon appellant. It
Q It is a flexible blade?
inferred this qualifying circumstances merely from the fact that
the lifeless body of Ben had been found lying in bed with an A It’s a cutter.
“open, depressed, circular” fracture located at the back of his
head. As to exactly how and when he had been fatally attacked, Q How do you describe the blade, is it sharp both
however, the prosecution failed to establish indubitably. Only the edges?
following testimony of appellant leads us to the events
A Yes, because he once used it to me.
surrounding his death:
Q How did he do it?
“Q You said that when Ben came back to your
house, he dragged you? How did he drag you? A He wanted to cut my throat.

COURT: Q With the same blade?

The witness demonstrated to the Court by using her A Yes, sir, that was the object used when he
right hand flexed forcibly in her front neck) intimidate me.

A And he dragged me towards the door backward.


xxx xxx xxx
ATTY. TABUCANON:
ATTY. TABUCANON:
Q Where did he bring you?
Q You said that this blade fell from his grip, is it
A Outside the bedroom and he wanted to get
correct?
something and then he kept on shouting at me
that ‘you might as well be killed so there will be A Yes, because I smashed him.
nobody to nag me’
Q What happened?
Q So you said that he dragged you towards the
drawer? A Ben tried to pick-up the wallet and the blade, I
pick-up the pipe and I smashed him and I ran to
A Yes, sir. the other room.
Q What is there in the drawer? Q What else happened?
A I was aware that it was a gun. A When I was in the other room, I felt the same
thing like what happened before when I was
COURT INTERPRETER
admitted in PHILPHOS Clinic, I was about to
(At this juncture the witness started crying) vomit. I know my blood pressure was raised. I
was frightened I was about to die because of my
ATTY. TABUCANON: blood pressure.
Q Were you actually brought to the drawer? COURT INTERPRETER:
A Yes, sir. (Upon the answer of the witness getting the pipe and
Q What happened when you were brought to that smashed him, the witness at the same time
drawer? pointed at the back of her neck or the nape).

A He dragged me towards the drawer and he was ATTY. TABUCANON:


about to open the drawer but he could not open Q You said you went to the room, what else
it because he did not have the key then he happened?
pulled his wallet which contained a blade about
3 inches long and I was aware that he was going A Considering all the physical sufferings that I’ve
to kill me and I smashed his arm and then the been through with him, I took pity on myself and
wallet and the blade fell. The one he used to I felt I was about to die also because of my
open the drawer I saw, it was a pipe about that blood pressure and the baby, so I got that gun
long, and when he was about to pick-up the and I shot him.
wallet and the blade, I smashed him then I ran to
COURT
the other room, and on that very moment
everything on my mind was to pity on myself, /to Atty. Tabucanon
then the feeling I had on that very moment was
the same when I was admitted in PHILPHOS Q You shot him?
Clinic, I was about to vomit. A Yes, I distorted the drawer.”[84]
COURT INTERPRETER The above testimony is insufficient to establish the
(The witness at this juncture is crying intensely). presence of treachery. There is no showing of the victim’s
position relative to appellant’s at the time of the shooting.
Besides, equally axiomatic is the rule that when a killing is
xxx xxx xxx
preceded by an argument or a quarrel, treachery cannot be
appreciated as a qualifying circumstance, because the deceased
32

may be said to have been forewarned and to have anticipated The Court, however, is not discounting the possibility of
aggression from the assailant.[85] self-defense arising from the battered woman syndrome. We
now sum up our main points. First, each of the phases of the
Moreover, in order to appreciate alevosia, the method of
cycle of violence must be proven to have characterized at least
assault adopted by the aggressor must have been consciously
two battering episodes between the appellant and her intimate
and deliberately chosen for the specific purpose of
partner. Second, the final acute battering episode preceding the
accomplishing the unlawful act without risk from any defense
killing of the batterer must have produced in the battered
that might be put up by the party attacked. [86] There is no
person’s mind an actual fear of an imminent harm from her
showing, though, that the present appellant intentionally chose a
batterer and an honest belief that she needed to use force in
specific means of successfully attacking her husband without
order to save her life. Third, at the time of the killing, the batterer
any risk to herself from any retaliatory act that he might make.
must have posed probable -- not necessarily immediate and
To the contrary, it appears that the thought of using the gun
actual -- grave harm to the accused, based on the history of
occurred to her only at about the same moment when she
violence perpetrated by the former against the latter. Taken
decided to kill her batterer-spouse. In the absence of any
altogether, these circumstances could satisfy the requisites of
convincing proof that she consciously and deliberately employed
self-defense. Under the existing facts of the present case,
the method by which she committed the crime in order to ensure
however, not all of these elements were duly established.
its execution, this Court resolves the doubt in her favor.[87]
WHEREFORE, the conviction of Appellant Marivic Genosa
for parricide is hereby AFFIRMED. However, there being two (2)
mitigating circumstances and no aggravating circumstance
Proper Penalty
attending her commission of the offense, her penalty
is REDUCED to six (6) years and one (1) day of prision mayor as
The penalty for parricide imposed by Article 246 of the minimum; to 14 years, 8 months and 1 day of reclusion
Revised Penal Code is reclusion perpetua to death. Since two temporal as maximum.
mitigating circumstances and no aggravating circumstance have Inasmuch as appellant has been detained for more than the
been found to have attended the commission of the offense, the minimum penalty hereby imposed upon her, the director of the Bureau
penalty shall be lowered by one (1) degree, pursuant to Article of Corrections may immediately RELEASE her from custody
64 of paragraph 5[88] of the same Code.[89] The penalty upon due determination that she is eligible for parole, unless she
ofreclusion temporal in its medium period is imposable, is being held for some other lawful cause. Costs de oficio.
considering that two mitigating circumstances are to be taken
into account in reducing the penalty by one degree, and no other SO ORDERED.
modifying circumstances were shown to have attended the
commission of the offense.[90] Under the Indeterminate Sentence January 13, 2016
Law, the minimum of the penalty shall be within the range of that
which is next lower in degree -- prision mayor -- and the G.R. No. 211062
maximum shall be within the range of the medium period
of reclusion temporal. PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, Plaintiff-Appellee,
vs.
Considering all the circumstances of the instant case, we MANUEL MACAL y BOLASCO, Accused-Appellant.
deem it just and proper to impose the penalty of prision mayor in
its minimum period, or six (6) years and one (1) day in prison as
DECISION
minimum; to reclusion temporal in its medium period, or 14 years
8 months and 1 day as maximum. Noting that appellant has
PEREZ, J.:
already served the minimum period, she may now apply for and
be released from detention on parole.[91]
Violence between husband and wife is nothing new. Marital
violence that leads to spousal killing is parricide. Perceived as a
horrific kind of killing, penal laws impose a harsher penalty on
Epilogue persons found guilty of parricide compared to those who commit
the felony of homicide.

Being a novel concept in our jurisprudence, the battered For review is the June 28, 2013 Decision 1 of the Court of
woman syndrome was neither easy nor simple to analyze and Appeals (CA) in CA-G.R. CEB-CR H.C. No. 01209 which
affirmed with modification the August 18, 2009 Decision 2 of the
recognize vis-à-vis the given set of facts in the present case.
Regional Trial Court (RTC) of Tacloban City, Branch 6, convicting
The Court agonized on how to apply the theory as a modern-day Manuel Macal y Bolasco (accused-appellant) of the crime of
reality. It took great effort beyond the normal manner in which parricide and sentencing him to suffer the penalty of reclusion
decisions are made -- on the basis of existing law and perpetua.
jurisprudence applicable to the proven facts. To give a just and
proper resolution of the case, it endeavored to take a good look The Facts
at studies conducted here and abroad in order to understand the
intricacies of the syndrome and the distinct personality of the For allegedly killing his spouse, Auria Ytac Macal (Auria), the
chronically abused person. Certainly, the Court has learned accused-appellant was charged with the crime of parricide in a
much. And definitely, the solicitor general and appellant’s February 13, 2003 Information3 that reads:
counsel, Atty. Katrina Legarda, have helped it in such learning
process. "That on or about the 12th day of February, 2003, in the City of
Tacloban, Philippines and within the jurisdiction of this Honorable
While our hearts empathize with recurrently battered Court, the above-named accused, MANUEL MACAL y BOLASO,
persons, we can only work within the limits of law, jurisprudence did, then and there, wilfully, unlawfully and feloniously and with
and given facts. We cannot make or invent them. Neither can evident premeditation, that is, having conceived and deliberated
we amend the Revised Penal Code. Only Congress, in its to kill his wife, AURIA MACAL y YTAC, with whom he was united
in lawful wedlock, armed with an improvised bladed weapon (belt
wisdom, may do so.
buckle) and a kitchen knife, stab said Auria Macal on the front
33

portion of her body inflicting a fatal wound which caused her death, but seeks exoneration from criminal liability by interposing
death, which incident happened inside the bedroom of the house the defense that the stabbing was accidental and not intentional.
they are residing.
The accused-appellant admitted that he was married to Auria in
CONTRARY TO LAW." March 2000 and the wedding was held in Manila. The couple
had two children but one of them died. According to the accused-
On July 7, 2003, upon arraignment, the accused-appellant, duly appellant, he was employed as a security guard by Fighter Wing
assisted by counsel, pleaded not guilty to the charge of Security Agency which was based in Manila. While the accused-
parricide.4 During the pre-trial conference, the parties agreed to appellant was working in Manila, his family lived with Angeles in
stipulate that Auria was the wife of the accused- Tacloban City. The accused-appellant came home only once a
appellant.5 Thereafter, trial on the merits ensued. year to his family in Tacloban City.

Version of the Prosecution On February 12, 2003, the accused-appellant arrived home in V
& G Subdivision, Tacloban City from Manila. Before the accused-
appellant could reach the bedroom, he was warned by Arvin, his
To prove the accusation, the prosecution presented Angeles Ytac brother-in-law, not to go inside the bedroom where his wife was
(Angeles) and Erwin Silvano (Erwin) as witnesses. with a man for he might be killed. Ignoring Arvin's admonition,
the accused-appellant kicked the door but it was opened from
Angeles, the mother of Auria, narrated that Auria and the the inside. After the bedroom door was opened, the accused-
accused-appellant got married in March 2000 and that out of appellant saw his wife and a man seated beside each other
their union, they begot two (2) children. Angeles claimed that, at conversing. Furious by what he had seen, the accused-appellant
the time of the incident, they were all living together in a house went out of the room, got a knife and delivered a stab blow
located in V & G Subdivision, Tacloban City. The said house was towards the man but the latter was shielded by Auria. In the
entrusted to Angeles by her brother, Quirino Ragub, who was process, the stab blow landed on Auria. After Auria was
then residing in Canada. accidentally stabbed, the man ran outside and fled. The
accused-appellant testified that out of frustration for not killing
Angeles testified that at around 1:20 in the morning of February the man, he wounded himself on the chest. He then left the
12, 2003, she, her children Catherine, Jessica, Auria and Arvin house and went to Eastern Visayas Regional Medical Center
were walking home after playing bingo at a (EVRMC) for medical treatment.
local peryahan. Some friends tagged along with them so that
they could all feast on the leftover food prepared for the fiesta Benito attested that he came to know the accused-appellant
that was celebrated the previous day. Along the way, Angeles while they were seated next to each other on board a
and her group met Auria's husband, the accused appellant. The Christopher Bus bound for Tacloban City. The bus they were
latter joined them in walking back to their house. riding reached Tacloban City past midnight of February 12, 2003.
Considering the lateness of the hour and there was no bus
When they arrived at the house, the group proceeded to the available that would take Benito to his final destination, the
living room except for Auria and the accused-appellant who went accused-appellant convinced Benito to simply go home with him.
straight to their bedroom, about four (4) meters away from the Once they got home, the accused-appellant went inside the
living room. Shortly thereafter, Angeles heard her daughter Auria house while Benito opted to stay by the main door. The accused-
shouting, "mother help me I am going to be killed."6 Upon appellant asked someone from the living room the whereabouts
hearing Auria's plea for help, Angeles and the rest of her of his wife, Auria. Benito testified that a female informed the
companions raced towards the bedroom but they found the door accused-appellant that Auria was inside the bedroom but
of the room locked. Arvin kicked open the door of the bedroom advised him not to go in as Auria was not alone in the room.
and there they all saw a bloodied Auria on one side of the room. Undettered, the accused-appellant proceeded to the bedroom
Next to Auria was the accused-appellant who was then trying to and was able to get inside the room. Moments later, Benito
stab himself with the use of an improvised bladed weapon (belt heard a thudding sound coming from the bedroom. Then, Benito
buckle). Auria was immediately taken to a hospital, on board a saw a man running out of the house. Sensing trouble, Benito
vehicle owned by a neighbor, but was pronounced dead on immediately proceeded to the bus terminal.
arrival. Angeles declared that the accused-appellant jumped over
the fence and managed to escape before the policemen could To support the accused-appellant's claim that he brought himself
reach the crime scene. to a hospital on February 12, 2003, Nerissa, the Administrative
Officer/OIC Records Officer of EVRMC, was presented as
Erwin corroborated Angeles' testimony that Auria was killed by witness for the defense. Her testimony focused on the existence
the accused-appellant. Erwin claimed that he was part of the of the medical record concerning the examination conducted on
group that went to Angeles' residence on that fateful morning. the accused-appellant by a physician at EVRMC. Per hospital
From where he was seated in the living room, Erwin recounted record, Nerissa confirmed that the accused-appellant sustained
that he heard Auria's screaming for her mother's help. The cry for a three-centimeter wound located at the left parastemal, level of
help prompted him to ran towards the bedroom. Once the door the 5th ICS non-penetrating and another lacerated wound in the
was forcibly opened, Erwin became aware that the accused- left anterior chest.8
appellant stabbed Auria on the upper left portion of her chest
with a stainless knife. Erwin testified that the accused-appellant The RTC's Ruling
stabbed himself on the chest with a knife-like belt buckle and
that soon after, the accused-appellant hurriedly left the house. The RTC convicted the accused-appellant of the crime of
parricide and the dispositive portion of its judgment reads:
The prosecution formally offered in evidence the Certificate of
Death wherein it is indicated that Auria died of hemorrhagic WHEREFORE, in view of the foregoing considerations, this
shock secondary to stab wound.7 Court finds accused MANUEL MACAL y BOLASCOguilty
beyond reasonable doubt of the crime of Parricide, and
Version of the Defense sentences him to suffer the penalty of imprisonment
of RECLUSION PERPETUA; to pay the heirs of the victim,
To substantiate its version of the fact, the defense called to the Aurea Ytac Macal, P.50,000.00 as civil indemnity, and
witness stand the accused-appellant, Benito Billota (Benito) and P.50,000.00 for moral damages. And, to pay the Costs.
Nerissa Alcantara (Nerissa).1âwphi1
SO ORDERED.9
The accused-appellant did not refute the factual allegations of
the prosecution that he stabbed his wife, resulting in the latter's The RTC gave full credence to the testimonies of the prosecution
witnesses. In contrast, the RTC found accused-appellant's
34

declarations doubtful and contrary to human experience and other ascendants or other descendants, or the legitimate spouse
reason. The RTC was not persuaded by the accused-appellant's of the accused.13
argument that the stabbing incident was purely accidental after it
took into account Auria's terrifying wail that she was going to be Among the three requisites, the relationship between the
killed. The RTC also refused to believe accused-appellant's offender and the victim is the most crucial. 14 This relationship is
claim that there was a man with Auria inside the bedroom. Logic what actually distinguishes the crime of parricide from
dictates that a man in that situation would normally run away the homicide.15 In parricide involving spouses, the best proof of the
first opportunity he had specifically when the accused-appellant relationship between the offender and victim is their marriage
stepped out of the bedroom to obtain a knife. The RTC even certificate.16 Oral evidence may also be considered in proving the
went further by saying that the accused-appellant injured himself relationship between the two as long as such proof is not
so that he can later on invoke self-defense which he failed to do contested.17
as there are witnesses who can easily disprove his theory of
self-defense.
In this case, the spousal relationship between Auria and the
accused-appellant is beyond dispute. As previously stated, the
The CA 's Ruling defense already admitted that Auria was the legitimate wife of
the accused-appellant during the pre-trial conference. Such
On appeal, the CA affirmed with modification the RTC decision. admission was even reiterated by the accused-appellant in the
The fallo of the CA decision states: course of trial of the case. Nevertheless, the prosecution
produced a copy of the couple's marriage certificate which the
IN LIGHT OF ALL THE FOREGOING, the Court hereby defense admitted to be a genuine and faithful reproduction of the
AFFIRMS with MODIFICATION the assailed Decision dated original.18 Hence, the key element that qualifies the killing to
August 18, 2009, of the Regional Trial Court, Branch 6, Tacloban parricide was satisfactorily demonstrated in this case.
City in Criminal Case No. 2003-02-92. Accused-Appellant
MANUEL MACAL y BOLASCO is found GUILTY of parricide Just like the marital relationship between Auria and the accused-
committed against his legal wife, Auria Ytac Macal, on February appellant, the fact of Auria's death is incontestable. Witnesses,
12, 2003 and is sentenced to suffer the penalty of reclusion from both the prosecution and defense, were in agreement that
perpetua. He is further ordered to pay the heirs of Auria Ytac Auria expired on February 12, 2003. As additional proof of her
Macal the amounts of Php 50,000.00 as civil indemnity, Php demise, the prosecution presented Auria's Certificate of Death
50,000.00 as moral damages, Php 25,000.00 as temperate which was admitted by the RTC and the defense did not object
damages and Php 30,000.00 as exemplary damages. All to its admissibility.
monetary awards for damages shall earn interest at the legal
rate of six percent (6%) per annum from date of finality of this Anent the remaining element, there is no doubt that Auria was
Decision until fully paid. killed by the accused-appellant. The stabbing incident was
acknowledged by the accused-appellant himself during his direct
SO ORDERED.10 examination by defense counsel Emelinda Maquilan, to wit:

The appellate court ruled that all the elements of parricide are xxxx
present in this case. Moreover, the CA reasoned out that while
Angeles did not actually see the accused-appellant stab Auria, Q: What is the name of your wife?
the prosecution adduced sufficient circumstantial evidence to
sustain his conviction. From the viewpoint of the CA, the
prosecution's case against the accused-appellant was A: Aurea Ytac.
strengthened by the latter's own testimony and admission that he
stabbed his wife. The CA further held that neither can the act of Q: You said you saw your wife in your room with a man. Now,
the accused-appellant be covered under the exempting what was the man doing when you saw this man together with
circumstance of accident under Article 12(4)11 of the Revised your wife?
Penal Code nor under absolutory cause found in Article 24 12 of
the same Code. A: They were conversing.

Hence, this appeal. Q: They were conversing in what part of your room?

The Issue A: At one side of the room.

The principal issue before the Court is whether the court a Q: So, what did you do upon seeing the man, if there was any?
quo erred in finding the accused-appellant guilty beyond
reasonable doubt of the crime of parricide.
A: Because of my anger, I stabbed the man.
In the resolution of March 10, 2014, the Court required the
parties to submit their respective supplemental briefs within thirty Q: Were you able to hit the man?
(30) days from notice. However, both parties manifested that
they will no longer file the required briefs as they had already A: No, because my wife shielded him.
exhaustively and extensively discussed all the matters and
issues of this case in the briefs earlier submitted with the CA.
Q: Since your wife shielded the man, what happened to your
wife?
The Court's Ruling
A: My wife got hit.
The Court affirms the conviction of the accused-appellant with
modifications.
Q: Now, in what of the body of his wife was hit?

All the Essential Elements of Parricide Duly Established and


A: I cannot exactly tell where she was hit but he delivered a
Proven by the Prosecution
stabbing blow at the man.

Parricide is committed when: (1) a person is killed; (2) the


Q: So, after your wife was hit by the stabbing blow to be directed
deceased is killed by the accused; (3) the deceased is the father,
to the man, what happened next?
mother, or child, whether legitimate or illegitimate, or a legitimate
35

A: Out of desperation because I was not able to kill the man, I A: My wife was the one hit.21
wounded myself.
The defense of accident presupposes lack of intention to
Q: How about the man whom you wanted to stab, what kill.22 This certainly does not hold true in the instant case based
happened to him? on the aforequoted testimony of the accused-appellant.
Moreover, the prosecution witnesses, who were then within
A: He ran. hearing distance from the bedroom, testified that they distinctly
heard Auria screaming that she was going to be killed by the
accused-appellant.
Q: Since you said your wife was hit by that stabbing blow, what
happen to your wife then?
Given these testimonies, the accused-appellant's defense of
accident is negated as he was carrying out an unlawful act at the
A: She died. time of the incident.

Q: How about you, what happened to you after you yourself? It also bears stressing that in raising the defense of accident, the
accused-appellant had the inescapable burden of proving, by
A: I left the place.19 clear and convincing evidence, of accidental infliction of injuries
on the victim.23 In so doing, the accused-appellant had to rely on
The outright admission of the accused-appellant in open court the strength of his own evidence and not on the weakness of the
that he delivered the fatal stabbing blow that ended Auria's life prosecution's evidence.24 As aptly pointed out by the CA, the
established his culpability. defense failed to discharge the burden of proving the elements
of the exempting circumstance of accident that would otherwise
free the accused-appellant from culpability. Aside from the
Clearly, all the elements of the crime of parricide as defined in accused-appellant's self-serving statement, no other proof was
Article 246 of the Revised Penal Code are present in this case. adduced that will substantiate his defense of accidental stabbing.

Affirmative Defense of Accident as an Exempting Further, contrary to what the accused-appellant wants the Court
Circumstance Must Fail to believe, his actuations closely after Auria was stabbed tell a
different story.1avvphi1 If Auria was really accidentally stabbed
The defense invoked Article 12 paragraph 4 of the Revised by him, the accused-appellant's natural reaction would have
Penal Code to release the accused-appellant from criminal been to take the lead in bringing his wife to a hospital. Instead,
liability. Pursuant to said provision, the essential requisites of his priority was to come up with an improvised bladed weapon
accident as an exempting circumstance are: (1) a person is that he could use to hurt himself. Additionally, the fact that the
performing a lawful act; (2) with due care; (3) he causes an injury accused-appellant ran away from the crime scene leaving Auria's
to another by mere accident; and (4) without fault or intention of relatives and neighbors to tend to his dying wife is indicative of
causing it.20 his guilt.

A close scrutiny of the transcripts of stenographic notes would The CA took one step further when it examined the applicability
reveal that the accused-appellant was not performing a lawful of Article 247 of the Revised Penal Code in this case. For this
act at the time Auria was stabbed. This can be gathered from the purpose, the CA assumed arguendo that there is another man
narration of the accused-appellant during cross-examination inside the bedroom with Auria.
conducted by Prosecutor Percival Dolina:
Article 247 is an absolutory cause that recognizes the
xxxx commission of a crime but for reasons of public policy and
sentiment there is no penalty imposed.25 The defense must
prove the concurrence of the following elements: (1) that a
Q: Now, of course, when you saw the man and your wife,
legally married person surprises his spouse in the act of
according to you, they were just conversing with each other,
committing sexual intercourse with another person; (2) that he
correct?
kills any of them or both of them in the act or immediately
thereafter; and (3) that he has not promoted or facilitated the
A: Yes, sir. prostitution of his wife (or daughter) or that he or she has not
consented to the infidelity of the other spouse.26 Among the three
Q: How far where they to each other? elements, the most vital is that the accused-appellant must prove
to the court that he killed his wife and her paramour in the act of
sexual intercourse or immediately thereafter.27
A: They were beside each other.

Having admitted the stabbing, the burden of proof is shifted to


Q: They were sitting?
the defense to show the applicability of Article 247. 28As disclosed
by the accused-appellant, when he saw Auria with a man, the
A: Yes, sir, both were sitting. two were just seated beside each other and were simply talking.
Evidently, the absolutory cause embodied in Article 247 is not
Q: Of course, when you saw them, you got angry? applicable in the present case.

A: I became angry. In sum, the Court agrees with the trial and appellate courts that
the evidence of the prosecution has established the guilt of the
accused-appellant beyond reasonable doubt.
Q: That is why you got a knife and stabbed the man?

Penalty and Pecuniary Liability


A: Yes, sir.

Article 246 of the Revised Penal Code provides that the


Q: And when you stabbed the man, you had the intention to kill imposable penalty for parricide is reclusion perpetua to
him? death.1âwphi1 With the enactment of Republic Act No. 9346 (RA
9346), the imposition of the penalty of death is prohibited.
A: Yes, my intention was to kill him. Likewise significant is the provision found in Article 63 of the
Revised Penal Code stating that in the absence of mitigating and
Q: But it was your wife who was hit? aggravating circumstances in the commission of the crime, the
lesser penalty shall be imposed. Applying these to the case at
36

bar and considering that there are no mitigating and aggravating


circumstances present, the penalty of reclusion perpetua was
correctly imposed by the RTC and CA.
SARMIENTO, J.:

Civil indemnity is automatically awarded upon proof of the fact of


death of the victim and the commission by the accused-appellant This is an appeal from the decision of the Regional Trial Court of
of the crime of parricide.29 Current jurisprudence sets civil Palo, Leyte, sentencing the accused-appellant Francisco Abarca
indemnity in the amount of P75,000.00. As such, the Court finds to death for the complex crime of murder with double frustrated
it necessary to increase the civil indemnity awarded by the trial murder.
and appellate courts from P50,000.00 to P75,000.00.
The case was elevated to this Court in view of the death
There is no question that Auria's heirs suffered mental anguish sentence imposed. With the approval of the new Constitution,
by reason of her violent death. Consequently, the award of moral
abolishing the penalty of death and commuting all existing death
damages is in order. Similar to civil indemnity, prevailing
jurisprudence pegs moral damages in the amount of P75,000.00. sentences to life imprisonment, we required the accused-
On that account, the Court must also adjust the moral damages appellant to inform us whether or not he wished to pursue the
from P50,000.00 to P75,000.00. case as an appealed case. In compliance therewith, he filed a
statement informing us that he wished to continue with the case
Given that this is a case of a husband killing his wife where by way of an appeal.
relationship a qualifying circumstance, the award of exemplary
damages is justified. The exemplary damages of P30,000.00
The information (amended) in this case reads as follows:
awarded by the CA is maintained as it is consistent with the
latest rulings of the Court.
xxx xxx xxx
Temperate damages may be recovered when some pecuniary
loss has been suffered but definite proof of its amount was not The undersigned City Fiscal of the City of Tacloban accuses
presented in court.30 In People v. De Leon,31 the Court awarded Francisco Abarca of the crime of Murder with Double Frustrated
P25,000.00 as temperate damages where the expenses for the Murder, committed as follows:
funeral cannot be determined with certainty because of the
absence of receipts to prove them. In keeping with the said
ruling, the Court affirms the CA's award of P25,000.00 as That on or about the 15th day of July, 1984, in the City of
temperate damages. Tacloban, Philippines and within the jurisdiction of this Honorable
Court, the above-named accused, with deliberate intent to kill
On a final note, the Court upholds the imposition of interest at and with evident premeditation, and with treachery, armed with
the legal rate of 6% per annum on all the monetary awards for an unlicensed firearm (armalite), M-16 rifle, did then and there
damages reckoned from the date of finality of this Decision until wilfully, unlawfully and feloniously attack and shot several times
fully paid.32 This is in accordance with the Court's discretionary
KHINGSLEY PAUL KOH on the different parts of his body,
authority to levy interest as part of the damages and in
conformity with the latest Court policy on the matter. thereby inflicting upon said KHINGSLEY PAUL KOH gunshot
wounds which caused his instantaneous death and as a
consequence of which also caused gunshot wounds to LINA
WHEREFORE, the CA's decision dated June 28, 2013 in CA-
G.R. CEB-CR H.C. No. 01209, finding accused-appellant, AMPARADO and ARNOLD AMPARADO on the different parts of
Manuel Macal y Bolasco, guilty beyond reasonable doubt of the their bodies thereby inflicting gunshot wounds which otherwise
crime of Parricide, is would have caused the death of said Lina Amparado and Arnold
hereby AFFIRMED with MODIFICATIONS. Accused-appellant is Amparado, thus performing all the acts of execution which
sentenced to suffer the penalty of reclusion perpetua and to pay should have produced the crimes of murders as a consequence,
the heirs of the victim, Auria Ytac Macal, the amounts of
but nevertheless did not produce it by reason of causes
P75,000.00 as civil indemnity, P75,000.00 as moral damages,
P30,000.00 as exemplary damages, and P25,000.00 as independent of his will, that is by the timely and able medical
temperate damages. In addition, all the monetary awards shall assistance rendered to Lina Amparado and Arnold Amparado
earn an interest at the legal rate of 6% per annum from the date which prevented their death. 1
of finality of this Decision until fully paid.
xxx xxx xxx
SO ORDERED.
On arraignment, the accused-appellant pleaded not guilty. The
Solicitor General states accurately the facts as follows:

DEATH OR PHYSICAL INJURIES INFLICTED UNDER


EXCEPTIONAL CIRCUMSTANCES Khingsley Paul Koh and the wife of accused Francisco Abarca,
Jenny, had illicit relationship. The illicit relationship apparently
PEOPLE v. ABARCA began while the accused was in Manila reviewing for the 1983
Bar examinations. His wife was left behind in their residence in
Tacloban, Leyte (pp. 45-47, 65, tsn, Sept. 24, 1984).
Republic of the Philippines
SUPREME COURT
On July 15, 1984, the accused was in his residence in Tacloban,
Manila
Leyte. On the morning of that date he went to the bus station to
go to Dolores, Eastern Samar, to fetch his daughter. However,
SECOND DIVISION
he was not able to catch the first trip (in the morning). He went
back to the station in the afternoon to take the 2:00 o'clock trip
G.R. No. 74433 September 14, 1987 but the bus had engine trouble and could not leave (pp. 5-8, tsn,
Nov. 28, 1985). The accused, then proceeded to the residence of
PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, plaintiff-appellee, his father after which he went home. He arrived at his residence
vs. at the V & G Subdivision in Tacloban City at around 6:00 o'clock
FRANCISCO ABARCA, accused-appellant. in the afternoon (pp. 8-9, tsn, Id.).
37

Upon reaching home, the accused found his wife, Jenny, and IN CONVICTING THE ACCUSED FOR THE CRIME AS
Khingsley Koh in the act of sexual intercourse. When the wife CHARGED INSTEAD OF ENTERING A JUDGMENT OF
and Koh noticed the accused, the wife pushed her paramour CONVICTION UNDER ARTICLE 247 OF THE REVISED PENAL
who got his revolver. The accused who was then peeping above CODE;
the built-in cabinet in their room jumped and ran away (pp. 9-13,
tsn, Id.). II.

The accused went to look for a firearm at Tacloban City. He went IN FINDING THAT THE KILLING WAS AMENDED BY THE
to the house of a PC soldier, C2C Arturo Talbo, arriving there at QUALIFYING CIRCUMSTANCE OF TREACHERY. 4
around 6:30 p.m. He got Talbo's firearm, an M-16 rifle, and went
back to his house at V & G Subdivision. He was not able to find The Solicitor General recommends that we apply Article 247 of
his wife and Koh there. He proceeded to the "mahjong session" the Revised Penal Code defining death inflicted under
as it was the "hangout" of Kingsley Koh. The accused found Koh exceptional circumstances, complexed with double frustrated
playing mahjong. He fired at Kingsley Koh three times with his murder. Article 247 reads in full:
rifle (pp. 13-19, tsn, Id.). Koh was hit. Arnold and Lina Amparado
who were occupying a room adjacent to the room where Koh
ART. 247. Death or physical injuries inflicted under exceptional
was playing mahjong were also hit by the shots fired by the
circumstances. — Any legally married person who, having
accused (pp. 34-49, tsn, Sept. 24, 1984). Kingsley Koh died
surprised his spouse in the act of committing sexual intercourse
instantaneously of cardiorespiratory arrest due to shock and
with another person, shall kill any of them or both of them in the
hemorrhage as a result of multiple gunshot wounds on the head,
act or immediately thereafter, or shall inflict upon them any
trunk and abdomen (pp. 28-29, tsn, Sept. 24, 1984; see also
serious physical injury, shall suffer the penalty of destierro.
exh. A): Arnold Amparado was hospitalized and operated on in
the kidney to remove a bullet (pp. 17-23, tsn, Oct. 17, 1984; see
also exh. C). His wife, Lina Amparado, was also treated in the If he shall inflict upon them physical injuries of any other kind, he
hospital as she was hit by bullet fragments (p. 23, tsn, Id.). shall be exempt from punishment.
Arnold Amparado who received a salary of nearly P1,000.00 a
month was not able to work for 1-1/2 months because of his These rules shall be applicable, under the same circumstances,
wounds. He spent P15,000.00 for medical expenses while his to parents with respect to their daughters under eighteen years
wife spent Pl,000.00 for the same purpose (pp. 24-25, tsn, Id. ). 2 of age, and their seducers, while the daughters are living with
their parents.
On March 17, 1986, the trial court rendered the appealed
judgment, the dispositive portion whereof reads as follows: Any person who shall promote or facilitate prostitution of his wife
or daughter, or shall otherwise have consented to the infidelity of
xxx xxx xxx the other spouse shall not be entitled to the benefits of this
article.
WHEREFORE, finding the accused, Francisco Abarca guilty
beyond reasonable doubt of the complex crime of murder with We agree with the Solicitor General that the aforequoted
double frustrated murder as charged in the amended provision applies in the instant case. There is no question that
information, and pursuant to Art. 63 of the Revised Penal Code the accused surprised his wife and her paramour, the victim in
which does not consider the effect of mitigating or aggravating this case, in the act of illicit copulation, as a result of which, he
circumstances when the law prescribes a single indivisible went out to kill the deceased in a fit of passionate outburst.
penalty in relation to Art. 48, he is hereby sentenced to death, to Article 247 prescribes the following elements: (1) that a legally
indemnify the heirs of Khingsley Paul Koh in the sum of P30,000, married person surprises his spouse in the act of committing
complainant spouses Arnold and Lina Amparado in the sum of sexual intercourse with another person; and (2) that he kills any
Twenty Thousand Pesos (P20,000.00), without subsidiary of them or both of them in the act or immediately thereafter.
imprisonment in case of insolvency, and to pay the costs. These elements are present in this case. The trial court, in
convicting the accused-appellant of murder, therefore erred.
It appears from the evidence that the deceased Khingsley Paul
Koh and defendant's wife had illicit relationship while he was Though quite a length of time, about one hour, had passed
away in Manila; that the accused had been deceived, betrayed, between the time the accused-appellant discovered his wife
disgraced and ruined by his wife's infidelity which disturbed his having sexual intercourse with the victim and the time the latter
reasoning faculties and deprived him of the capacity to reflect was actually shot, the shooting must be understood to be the
upon his acts. Considering all these circumstances this court continuation of the pursuit of the victim by the accused-appellant.
believes the accused Francisco Abarca is deserving of executive The Revised Penal Code, in requiring that the accused "shall kill
clemency, not of full pardon but of a substantial if not a radical any of them or both of them . . . immediately" after surprising his
reduction or commutation of his death sentence. spouse in the act of intercourse, does not say that he should
commit the killing instantly thereafter. It only requires that the
death caused be the proximate result of the outrage
Let a copy of this decision be furnished her Excellency, the
overwhelming the accused after chancing upon his spouse in the
President of the Philippines, thru the Ministry of Justice, Manila.
basest act of infidelity. But the killing should have been actually
motivated by the same blind impulse, and must not have been
SO ORDERED. 3 influenced by external factors. The killing must be the direct by-
product of the accused's rage.
xxx xxx xxx
It must be stressed furthermore that Article 247, supra, does not
The accused-appellant assigns the following errors committed by define an offense. 5 In People v. Araque, 6 we said:
the court a quo:
xxx xxx xxx
I.
38

As may readily be seen from its provisions and its place in the appellant, and being the more severe offense, proposes the
Code, the above-quoted article, far from defining a felony, merely imposition of reclusion temporal in its maximum period pursuant
provides or grants a privilege or benefit — amounting practically to Article 48 of the Revised Penal Code. This is where we
to an exemption from an adequate punishment — to a legally disagree. The accused-appellant did not have the intent to kill
married person or parent who shall surprise his spouse or the Amparado couple. Although as a rule, one committing an
daughter in the act of committing sexual intercourse with offense is liable for all the consequences of his act, that rule
another, and shall kill any or both of them in the act or presupposes that the act done amounts to a felony. 9
immediately thereafter, or shall inflict upon them any serious
physical injury. Thus, in case of death or serious physical But the case at bar requires distinctions. Here, the accused-
injuries, considering the enormous provocation and his righteous appellant was not committing murder when he discharged his
indignation, the accused — who would otherwise be criminally rifle upon the deceased. Inflicting death under exceptional
liable for the crime of homicide, parricide, murder, or serious circumstances is not murder. We cannot therefore hold the
physical injury, as the case may be — is punished only appellant liable for frustrated murder for the injuries suffered by
withdestierro. This penalty is mere banishment and, as held in a the Amparados.
case, is intended more for the protection of the accused than a
punishment. (People vs. Coricor, 79 Phil., 672.) And where This does not mean, however, that the accused-appellant is
physical injuries other than serious are inflicted, the offender is totally free from any responsibility. Granting the fact that he was
exempted from punishment. In effect, therefore, Article 247, or not performing an illegal act when he fired shots at the victim, he
the exceptional circumstances mentioned therein, amount to an cannot be said to be entirely without fault. While it appears that
exempting circumstance, for even where death or serious before firing at the deceased, he uttered warning words ("an
physical injuries is inflicted, the penalty is so greatly lowered as waray labot kagawas,") 10that is not enough a precaution to
to result to no punishment at all. A different interpretation, i.e., absolve him for the injuries sustained by the Amparados. We
that it defines and penalizes a distinct crime, would make the nonetheless find negligence on his part. Accordingly, we hold
exceptional circumstances which practically exempt the accused him liable under the first part, second paragraph, of Article 365,
from criminal liability integral elements of the offense, and that is, less serious physical injuries through simple imprudence
thereby compel the prosecuting officer to plead, and, incidentally, or negligence. (The records show that Arnold Amparado was
admit them, in the information. Such an interpretation would be incapacitated for one and one-half months; 11 there is no
illogical if not absurd, since a mitigating and much less an showing, with respect to Lina Amparado, as to the extent of her
exempting circumstance cannot be an integral element of the injuries. We presume that she was placed in confinement for
crime charged. Only "acts or omissons . . . constituting the only ten to fourteen days based on the medical certificate
offense" should be pleaded in a complaint or information, and a estimating her recovery period.) 12
circumstance which mitigates criminal liability or exempts the
accused therefrom, not being an essential element of the offense
For the separate injuries suffered by the Amparado spouses, we
charged-but a matter of defense that must be proved to the
therefore impose upon the accused-appellantarresto mayor (in
satisfaction of the court-need not be pleaded. (Sec. 5, Rule 106,
its medium and maximum periods) in its maximum
Rules of Court; U.S. vs. Campo, 23 Phil., 368.)
period, arresto to being the graver penalty (than destierro). 13

That the article in question defines no crime is made more


WHEREFORE, the decision appealed from is hereby
manifest when we consider that its counterpart in the old Penal
MODIFIED. The accused-appellant is sentenced to four months
Code (Article 423) was found under the General Provisions
and 21 days to six months of arresto mayor. The period within
(Chapter VIII) of Title VIII covering crimes against persons. There
which he has been in confinement shall be credited in the
can, we think, hardly be any dispute that as part of the general
service of these penalties. He is furthermore ordered to
provisions, it could not have possibly provided for a distinct and
indemnify Arnold and Lina Amparado in the sum of P16,000.00
separate crime.
as and for hospitalization expense and the sum of P1,500.00 as
and for Arnold Amparado's loss of earning capacity. No special
xxx xxx xxx pronouncement as to costs.

We, therefore, conclude that Article 247 of the Revised Penal IT IS SO ORDERED.
Code does not define and provide for a specific crime, but grants
a privilege or benefit to the accused for the killing of another or
PEOPLE v. OYANIB
the infliction of serious physical injuries under the circumstances
therein mentioned. ... 7
FIRST DIVISION

xxx xxx xxx

Punishment, consequently, is not inflicted upon the accused. He [G.R. Nos. 130634-35. March 12, 2001]
is banished, but that is intended for his protection. 8

It shall likewise be noted that inflicting death under exceptional


circumstances, not being a punishable act, cannot be qualified PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, plaintiff-appellee, vs.
by either aggravating or mitigating or other qualifying MANOLITO OYANIB y MENDOZA, accused-
circumstances, We cannot accordingly appreciate treachery in appellant.
this case.
DECISION
The next question refers to the liability of the accused-appellant
for the physical injuries suffered by Lina Amparado and Arnold PARDO, J.:
Amparado who were caught in the crossfire as the accused-
appellant shot the victim. The Solicitor General recommends a Accused Manolito Oyanib y Mendoza appeals from the joint
finding of double frustrated murder against the accused- decision[1] of the Regional Trial Court, Branch 02, Iligan City
39

finding him guilty beyond reasonable doubt of homicide and 1979[10] and had two (2) children, Desilor and Julius. They lived
parricide and sentencing him to an indeterminate penalty[2] of six in Purok 1, Tambacan, Iligan City.
(6) months one day (1) to six (6) years of prision correccional as
In 1994, due to marital differences, Manolito and
minimum to six (6) years one (1) day to eight (8) years of prision
Tita separated, with Manolito keeping custody of their two (2)
mayor as maximum,[3]and to pay P50,000.00 civil indemnity and
children. Tita rented a room at the second floor of the house of
the costs for the death of Jesus Esquierdo, and to reclusion
Edgardo Lladas (hereafter Edgardo), not far from the place
perpetua, to pay P50,000.00 and the costs for the death of his
where her family lived.
wife, Tita T. Oyanib.[4]
At about 9:30 in the evening of September 4, 1995, while
On September 11, 1995, Iligan City Prosecutor Ulysses V.
Edgardo and his family were watching TV at the sala located at
Lagcao filed with the Regional Trial Court, Iligan City two (2)
the ground floor of their house at Purok 3-A, Tambacan, Iligan
separate informations charging accused Manolito Oyanib y
City, they heard a commotion coming from the second floor
Mendoza with murder and parricide, as follows:
rented by Tita. The commotion and the noise lasted for quite
some time. When it died down, Edgardo went upstairs to check.
Criminal Case No. 6012 [11]

“That on or about September 4, 1995, in the City of Iligan, Upstairs, Edgardo saw Tita wearing a duster, bloodied and
Philippines, and within the jurisdiction of this Honorable Court, sprawled on the floor. He saw Manolito stabbing Jesus
the said accused, armed with a deadly weapon to wit: a hunting Esquierdo (hereafter Jesus) while sitting on the latter’s stomach.
knife about six inches long and with intent to kill and evident Jesus was wearing a pair of long black pants. When Edgardo
premeditation and by means of treachery, did then and there asked Manolito what he was doing, accused told Edgardo not to
willfully, unlawfully and feloniously attack, assault, stab and interfere.
wound one Jesus Esquierdo, thereby inflicting upon him the
Thereafter, Edgardo left the house and called the
following physical injuries, to wit:
police. Meanwhile, the neighbors brought Tita to the hospital.
She died on the way to the hospital.[12]
Cardiorespiratory arrest
SPO3 Eduard Tubil, police investigator, General
Hypovolemic shock irreversible Investigation Office, Iligan City Police Command, Precinct I,
Poblacion, Iligan City said that at about 9:00 in the evening of
September 4, 1995, while he was on duty, he received an
Multiple organ injury
information regarding a stabbing incident at the Llagas residence
at Purok 3-A, Tambacan, Iligan City.[13]
Multiple stab wound chest & abdomen
At the crime scene, SPO3 Tubil saw the lifeless body of
and as a result thereof the said Jesus Esquierdo died. Jesus lying face up with several stab wounds in different parts of
the body. Jesus was clad in t-shirt and long pants. From the
crime scene, he recovered a knife. Afterwards, he went to Dr. Uy
“Contrary to and in violation of Article 248 of the Revised Penal
Hospital to check on Tita; he was informed that she was dead.
Code with the aggravating circumstances (sic) of evident
Manolito was the suspect in the killing of Jesus and Tita.[14] The
premeditation.”[5]
incident was recorded in the police blotter as Entry No. 137138.
[15]
Criminal Case No. 6018
On September 5, 1995, Dr. Leonardo A. Labanon, Medico-
“That on or about September 4, 1995, in the City of Iligan, Legal Officer, Iligan City examined the bodies of Jesus and Tita.
[16]
Philippines, and within the jurisdiction of this Honorable Court, Jesus sustained multiple stab wounds, and those inflicted in
the said accused, having conceived and (sic) deliberate intent to the right and left chests and stomach were fatal. [17] The cause of
kill his wife Tita Oyanib, did then and there willfully, unlawfully death was “cardiorespiratory arrest, hypovolemic shock
and feloniously and with evident premeditation, attack, assault, irreversible, multiple organ injury and multiple stab wound chest
stab and wound his wife, as a result of said attack, the said Tita and abdomen.”[18]
Oyanib died.
Likewise, Tita sustained several stab wounds, with the fatal
wounds inflicted in the left chest and right side of the abdomen.
“Contrary to and in violation of Article 246 of the Revised Penal The cause of death was “cardiorespiratory arrest, hypovolemic
Code.”[6] shock and multiple stab wound.”[19]

The prosecutor recommended no bail for the temporary As heretofore stated, in 1994, following a series of
liberty of accused Manolito Oyanib y Mendoza in both cases. arguments, Manolito and Tita decided to live
separately. Manolito retained custody of their two (2)
On September 11, 1995, accused voluntarily surrendered children. Immediately after the separation, Tita stayed at her
to the police authorities[7] and was immediately detained at the friend Merlyn’s house for two (2) months. Afterwards, she
Iligan City Jail.[8] transferred to the Lladas residence, located at Purok 3, G.
Tambacan, Iligan City, and rented the second floor.[20] The rented
On January 17, 1996, the trial court arraigned accused
space consisted mainly of a sala with one adjoining room. It was
Manolito Oyanib y Mendoza by reading the informations against
arranged in a manner that if one enters the main entrance door,
him and translating them into the Visayan dialect.[9] He pleaded
one is immediately led to the sala and from the sala, directly to
not guilty to both charges.
the door of the adjoining room.
As the two (2) cases arose from the same set of facts, the
Despite their separation, Manolito tried to win Tita back and
trial court conducted a joint trial.
exerted all efforts towards reconciliation for the sake of the
Accused Manolito Oyanib y Mendoza (hereafter Manolito) children. However, Tita was very reluctant to reconcile with
and Tita T. Oyanib (hereafter Tita) were married on February 3, Manolito.[21] In fact, she was very open about her relationship
with other men and would flaunt it in front of Manolito. One time,
40

he chanced upon his wife and her paramour, Jesus, in a very “1) In Criminal Case No. II-6012:
intimate situation by the hanging bridge at Brgy. Tambacan,
Iligan City.[22] Manolito confronted Tita and Jesus about this. He To an Indeterminate Penalty ranging from SIX (6) MONTHS
censured his wife and reminded her that she was still his wife. ONE (1) DAY to SIX (6) YEARS as Minimum to Six (6) YEARS
They just ignored him; they even threatened to kill him.[23] ONE (1) DAY to EIGHT (8) YEARS as Maximum; to indemnify
heirs of Jesus Esquierdo the sum of P50,000.00 as civil
In the evening of September 4, 1995, after supper, his
indemnity, and to pay the costs.
daughter Desilor handed Manolito a letter from the Iligan City
National High School. The letter mentioned that his son Julius
failed in two (2) subjects and invited his parents to a meeting at “2) In Criminal Case No. II-6018:
the school. Because he had work from 8:00 in the morning until
5:00 in the afternoon the next day, Manolito went to Tita’s house To RECLUSION PERPETUA pursuant to Republic Act No. 7659;
to ask her to attend the school meeting in his behalf.[24] to indemnify heirs of his wife P50,000.00 as civil indemnity and
to pay the costs.
Upon reaching Tita’s rented place, he heard “sounds of
romance” (kissing) coming from the inside. He pried open the
“It is likewise ordered that the aforesaid imprisonment is subject
door lock using a hunting knife. He caught his wife Tita and
to the forty (40) years limitation prescribed in Article 70 of the
Jesus having sexual intercourse. Jesus was on top of Tita and
Revised Penal Code.
his pants were down to his knees.

Upon seeing him, Jesus kicked Manolito in the “Accused is likewise entitled to full credit of his preventive
cheek. Manolito immediately stabbed Jesus. Though Jesus imprisonment.
was 5’9” in height and weighed about 70 kg., the suddenness of
the assault caused him to lose his balance and fall “SO ORDERED.
down. Manolito took advantage of this opportunity and stabbed
Jesus in the stomach. Tita left the room upon seeing Manolito,
“Iligan City, Philippines, May 26, 1997.
only to come back armed with a Tanduay bottle. She hit
Manolito in the head, while at the same time shouting “kill him
Jake, kill him Jake.”[25]
“MAXIMO B. RATUNIL
In the commotion, Manolito stabbed Jesus, hitting him in
the abdomen. Jesus fell down and Manolito stabbed him “Presiding Judge”[28]
again. Meanwhile, Tita stabbed Manolito in the arm with the
broken Tanduay bottle. This angered Manolito and he stabbed On June 17, 1997, accused Manolito Oyanib y Mendoza
Tita in the left breast. He stabbed her three (3) more times in interposed an appeal from the joint decision of the trial court to
different parts of her body. Tita fell near the lifeless body of her the Supreme Court.[29]
paramour. It was at this point that Edgardo, the owner of the
house Tita was renting, appeared from the ground floor and Accused admitted the killings. He argued that he killed
inquired about what had happened. Manolito told Edgardo not to them both under the exceptional circumstances provided in
interfere because he had nothing to do with it. Article 247 of the Revised Penal Code. He raised several errors
allegedly committed by the trial court, which boiled down to the
Thereafter, Manolito left the house of Edgardo and went to basic issue of whether accused is entitled to the exceptional
Kilumco, Camague, Iligan City and stayed at the wake of his privilege under Article 247 of the Revised Penal Code.[30] He
friend’s neighbor. He threw away the knife he used in stabbing questioned the trial court’s appreciation of the facts and the
his wife and her paramour. At around 4:00 in the morning of the evidence, contending that it ignored and overlooked vital pieces
following day, he went to Camague Highway to catch a bus for of physical evidence material to the defense of the accused, like
Lentogan, Aurora, Zamboanga. While in Lentogan, he heard the photograph of the lifeless body of Jesus. Accused contends
over radio DXIC that there was a call for him to surrender. He that the photograph graphically showed that Jesus’ pants were
heeded the call and gave himself up to the police authorities in wide open, unzipped and unbuttoned, revealing that he was not
Precinct 2, Nonocan, Iligan City.[26] wearing any underwear, lending credence to his defense that he
caught his wife and her paramour in the act of sexual
When asked why he was carrying a knife when he went to
intercourse. On the other hand, the Solicitor General submitted
his wife’s place, Manolito said that he brought it for self-defense.
that accused-appellant failed to discharge the burden of proving,
Prior to the incident, he received threats from his wife and her
by clear and convincing evidence, that he killed the victims under
paramour, Jesus, that they would kill him so they could live
the exceptional circumstances contemplated in Article 247 of the
together.[27]
Revised Penal Code. Hence, the trial court did not err in
After trial, on May 26, 1997, the trial court promulgated denying him the exempting privilege under the Article.[31]
a joint decision finding accused guilty beyond reasonable
We find the appeal meritorious.
doubt of the crimes charged. The dispositive portion reads:
At the outset, accused admitted killing his wife and her
“WHEREFORE, in the light of the foregoing findings and paramour. He invoked Article 247 of the Revised Penal Code as
pronouncements and having carefully observed the demeanor of an absolutory and an exempting cause. “An absolutory cause is
witnesses, this Court hereby declares accused MANOLITO present ‘where the act committed is a crime but for reasons of
OYANIB y Mendoza GUILTY beyond reasonable doubt of the public policy and sentiment there is no penalty imposed.’”[32]
crime of Homicide (Crim. Case No. II-6012) and Parricide (Crim.
Having admitted the killing, it is incumbent upon accused to
Case No. II-6018) and appreciating the two (2) mitigating
prove the exempting circumstances to the satisfaction of the
circumstances of passion or obfuscation and voluntary surrender
court in order to be relieved of any criminal liability. Article 247 of
without any aggravating circumstances to consider, this Court
the Revised Penal Code prescribes the following essential
sentences accused Manolito Oyanib y Mendoza to suffer an
elements for such a defense: (1) that a legally married person
imprisonment as follows:
surprises his spouse in the act of committing sexual intercourse
with another person; (2) that he kills any of them or both of them
41

in the act or immediately thereafter; and (3) that he has not In an information, dated 7 May 1976, Filomeno Salufrania y
promoted or facilitated the prostitution of his wife (or daughter) or Aleman was charged before the Court of First Instance of
that he or she has not consented to the infidelity of the other Camarines Norte, Branch I, with the complex crime of parricide
with intentional abortion, committed as follows:
spouse.[33] Accused must prove these elements by clear and
convincing evidence, otherwise his defense would be untenable.
“The death caused must be the proximate result of the outrage That on or about the 3rd day of December,
1974, in Tigbinan, Labo, Camarines Norte,
overwhelming the accused after chancing upon his spouse in the
Philippines, and within the jurisdiction of the
act of infidelity. Simply put, the killing by the husband of his wife Honorable Court the accused Filomeno
must concur with her flagrant adultery.”[34] Salufrania y Aleman did then and there,
willfully, unlawfully, and feloniously attack,
There is no question that the first element is present in the assault and use personal violence on
case at bar. The crucial fact that accused must convincingly MARCIANA ABUYO-SALUFRANIA, the
prove to the court is that he killed his wife and her paramour in lawfully wedded wife of the accused, by then
the act of sexual intercourse or immediately thereafter. and there boxing and stranging her, causing
upon her injuries which resulted in her
After an assiduous analysis of the evidence presented and instantaneous death; and by the same criminal
the testimonies of the witnesses, we find accused to have acted act committed on the person of the wife of the
within the circumstances contemplated in Article 247 of the accused, who was at the time 8 months on the
family way, the accused likewise did then and
Revised Penal Code. Admittedly, accused-appellant surprised
there willfully, unlawfully, and feloniously cause
his wife and her lover in the act of sexual intercourse. the death of the child while still in its maternal
womb, thereby committing both crimes of
To the mind of the court, what actually happened was that
PARRICIDE and INTENTIONAL ABORTION
accused chanced upon Jesus at the place of his wife. He saw as defined and punished under Art. 246 and
his wife and Jesus in the act of having sexual Art. 256, paragraph I, of the Revised Penal
intercourse. Blinded by jealousy and outrage, accused stabbed Code, to the damage and prejudice of the
Jesus who fought off and kicked the accused. He vented his heirs of said woman and child in the amount
anger on his wife when she reacted, not in defense of him, but in as the Honorable Court shall assess.
support of Jesus. Hence, he stabbed his wife as well several
times. Accused Manolito Oyanib y Mendoza surrendered to the CONTRARY TO LAW
police when a call for him to surrender was made.
Upon arraignment, the accused, assisted by counsel de officio,
The law imposes very stringent requirements before pleaded not guilty to the offenses charged.
affording the offended spouse the opportunity to avail himself of
Article 247, Revised Penal Code. As the Court put it in People v. After trial the lower court rendered a decision ** dated 9 August
Wagas:[35] 1978, the dispositive part of which states:

“The vindication of a Man’s honor is justified because of the WHEREFORE, finding the accused Filomeno
scandal an unfaithful wife creates; the law is strict on this, Salufrania y Aleman guilty beyond reasonable
authorizing as it does, a man to chastise her, even with doubt, of the complex crime of Parricide with
Intentional Abortion, he is hereby sentenced to
death. But killing the errant spouse as a purification is so severe
suffer the penalty of DEATH, to indemnify the
as that it can only be justified when the unfaithful spouse is heirs of the deceased Marciano Abuyo in the
caught in flagrante delicto; and it must be resorted to only with sum of P12,000.00 and to pay the costs. "For
great caution so much so that the law requires that it be inflicted unselfish, valuable and exemplary service
only during the sexual intercourse or immediately thereafter.” rendered by counsel de oficio, Atty. Marciano
C. Dating, Jr., a compensation of P500.00 is
hereby recommended for him subject to the
WHEREFORE, the Court REVERSES the appealed availability of funds
decision of the Regional Trial Court, Branch 02, Iligan City in
Criminal Cases Nos. II-6012 and II-6018. The Court sentences
SO ORDERED.
accused Manolito Oyanib y Mendoza to two (2) years and four
(4) months of destierro.[36] He shall not be permitted to enter
The accused having been sentenced to suffer the penalty of
Iligan City, nor within a radius of one hundred (100) kilometers death, this case is on automatic review before this Court.
from Iligan City.[37]

Costs de oficio. At the trial in the court a quo, the prosecution presented the
following witnesses: Dr. Juan L. Dyquiangco Jr., Pedro
SO ORDERED. Salufrania and Narciso Abuyo.

Dr. Juan L. Dyquiangco Jr., who was then Rural Health Officer of
Talisay, Camarines Norte, testified that, after passing the Board
UNINTENTIONAL ABORTION Examination, he was employed as a Resident Physician of La
Union Provincial Hospital, then as Junior Resident Physician of
PEOPLE v. SALUFRANIA Bethane Hospital in San Fernando, La Union and that later, he
joined the government service, starting from 1968 up to the time
of the trial; that as a Doctor of Medicine, he had performed about
G.R. No. L-50884 March 30, 1988 ten (10) post mortem examinations; that he was called upon by
the Municipal Judge of Talisay to examine the corpse of
THE PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, plaintiff-appellee, Marciana Abuyo-Salufrania that was exhumed from its grave in
vs. the Municipal Cemetery of Talisay at around 11:00 o'clock in the
FILOMENO SALUFRANIA, defendant-appellant. morning of 11 December 1974; that his post
mortem examination lasted from 12:30 o'clock to 2:00
o'clock in the afternoon of the same day. He reduced his
findings of injuries into writing. (Exhibit "A"), which,
PADILLA, J.:
42

together with their probable cause, as testified to by him, The other witness for the prosecution was Pedro Salufrania, son
of herein appellant and of the deceased. The lower court's
are as follows: decision states that, by reason of interest and relationship,
before Pedro Salufrania was allowed to testify against his father-
accused Filomeno Salufrania, he was carefully examined by the
Injury Cause
prosecuting officer and the defense counsel under the careful
supervision of the court a quo, to determine whether, at his age
1) Multiple abrasions with "Blunt object or friction by
of 13 years old, he was already capable of receiving correct
impressions of facts and of relating them truly and, also, whether
contusion, left leg, middle hard object" (tsn., Aug. 20,
he was compelled and/or threatened by anybody to testify
part, posterior
against his father-accused. 1
covering an area of 1976, p. 7)
The lower court found Pedro Salufrania to be determined and
about 2 & 1/2 by 5 intelligent. He convincingly declared that he was not threatened
inches. by any of his uncles on his mother's side to testify against his
father, because it was true that the latter killed his mother. Then,
2) Abrasions, 1/2 by 2 formally testifying as the prosecution's lone eyewitness, he
Friction on a hard object"
stated that his father Filomeno Salufrania and his mother
inches, medial side of the (tsn., Aug. 20, 1976,Marciana
p. 7) Abuyo quarrelled at about 6:00 o'clock in the evening
cubi of 3 December 1974, in their small house at a far away sitio in
barrio Tigbinan, Labo, Camarines Norte; that during said quarrel,
tal fossa (back left leg) he saw his father box his pregnant mother on the stomach and,
once fallen on the floor, his father strangled her to death; that he
3) Multiple pinhead sized Hard pinhead sized saw blood ooze from the eyes and nose of his mother and that
material
she died right on the spot where she fell.
wounds, right face, (tsn., Aug. 20, 1976, p. 7)
starting Pedro Salufrania further testified that after killing his mother, the
accused- appellant went out of the house to get a hammock; that
from the side of the right his brother Alex and he were the only ones who witnessed how
eye the accused killed their mother because his sister and other
brothers were already asleep when the horrible incident
down to mandibular bone happened; that his brothers Celedonio, Danilo and sister Merly
woke up after the death of their mother and kept watch at their
(right check) mothers body while their father was away; that their father
arrived early the next morning with the hammock and after
4) Upper right eyelid No cause given placing their dead mother on the hammock, the accused carried
her on his shoulder and brought the cadaver to the house of his
more prominent than the sister Conching, located at a populated section of Tigbinan that
left from Tigbinan the corpse was transferred to Gabon, Talisay,
Camarines Norte for burial.
eyelid ("the right upper
eyelid a Continuing his testimony, Pedro Salufrania stated that he is now
living with his uncle Eduardo Abuyo and had refused and still
little bit bulging than the refused to live with his father-accused, because the latter has
left threatened to kill him and his other brothers and sister should he
reveal the true cause of his mother's death.
eye "and" sort of
"swollen") (tsn.,
The third witness for the prosecution was Narciso Abuyo, a
Aug. 20, 1976, pp. 7-8) resident of Gabon, Talisay, Camarines Norte. He testified that the
accused Filomeno Salufrania and his sister, the deceased
5) Tongue protruding bet Marciana
Usually, the main cause of Abuyo, were lawfully wedded husband and wife as
evidenced by a marriage contract (Exhibit "C"). He declared that
ween the lips, about 1 his sister was more or less seven (7) months pregnant when she
protruding tongue during
inch teeth died; that he first came to know about his sister's death on 4
December 1974 thru his nephews Pedro and Alex Salufrania
line. who first informed him that their mother died of stomach ailment
death is (by) strangulation.
and headache; that he went to Tigbinan to request for the body
(tsn., Aug. 20, 1976,ofp.his
8) sister so that it may be buried in Talisay, Camarines Norte
and, as intended, Marciana Abuyo was buried in the Talisay
6) Deceased is pregnant Cemetery on 6 December 1974.

with a baby boy about 7-8 Narciso Abuyo also declared that after the burial of Marciana
Abuyo, the three (3) children of his deceased sister went to his
months old (tsn., Aug. 20, house and refused to go home with their father Filomeno
Salufrania; that when asked for the reason why, his nephew Alex
1976, p. 8). Salufraña told him that the real cause of death of their mother
was not stomach ailment and headache, rather, she was boxed
on the stomach and strangled to death by their father; that
Dr. Dyquiangco testified that after conducting the post immediately after learning of the true cause of death of his sister,
mortem examination, he issued a certification thereof (Exhibit he brought the matter to the attention of the police authorities of
"A"); that he issued a death certificate (Exhibit "B") for the Talisay, Camarines Norte, who investigated Alex and Pedro
deceased Marciano Abuyo-Salufrania, bearing the date of 5 Salufirania and later, to that of the Office of the Provincial Fiscal
December 1974, made on the basis of the information relayed by of Camarines Norte.
a certain Leonila Loma to his nurse before the burial, without
mentioning the cause of death; that the cause of death, as The defense had for witnesses Geronimo Villan, Juanito Bragais,
cardiac arrest, was indicated on said death certificate only after Angeles Liling Balce and the accused Filomeno Salufrania.
the post mortem examination on 11 December 1974.
43

Geronimo Villan testified that he was a neighbor of Filomeno The case was considered submitted for decision by the trial court
Sulfrania. He declared that Marciana Abuyo died at around 6:00 on 18 July 1978. As aforestated, the trial court found the
o'clock in the morning of 4 December 1974 in her house at Sitio appellant guilty of the crimes charged and sentenced him to the
Kapagisahan Tigbinan Labo, Camarines Norte; that he penalty of death.
happened to pass by said house because his attention was
attracted by the bright light in the fireplace and he saw Filomeno The appellant assigns the following errors allegedly committed
Salufrania boiling "ikmo" and garlic as medicine for his wife who by the trial court:
was about to deliver a child; that he helped the accused by
applying "ikmo" to the different parts of the body of Marciana
Abuyo and by administering the native treatment known as I
"bantil", that is, by pinching and pulling the skin with two fingers
of his closed fist; that when the condition of Marciana Abuyo THE TRIAL COURT ERRED IN CONVICTING THE ACCUSED
worsened, he told Filomeno Salufrania to go and get Juanita ON THE BASIS OF THE TESTIMONY OF AN INCOMPETENT
Bragais who is known as a healer but the latter arrived at about WITNESS, AND ON INCONSISTENT AND INSUFFICIENT
7:00 o'clock in the morning of 4 December 1974 and that at that EVIDENCE OF THE PROSECUTION, THEREBY VIOLATING
time Marciana Abuyo was already dead. THE RULE THAT THE ACCUSED IS ENTITLED TO AN
ACQUITTAL UNLESS HIS GUILT IS SHOWN BEYOND ANY
Witness Juanita Bragais testified that he was fetched by Felipe REASONABLE DOUBT.
Salufrania, another son of Filomeno Salufrania at about 6:00
o'clock in the morning of 4 December 1974. He further testified II
that when he reached the house of the Salufranias, Marciana
Abuyo was already dead so he just helped Filomeno Salufrania ASSUMING ARGUENDO THAT THE EVIDENCE FOR THE
in transferring the body of his wife to the house of the latter's PROSECUTION IS CREDIBLE AND SUFFICIENT, THE TRIAL
brother-in-law at Tigbinan, Labo, Camarines Norte. COURT ERRED IN CONVICTING THE ACCUSED OF THE
COMPLEX CRIME OF PARRICIDE WITH INTENTIONAL
Angeles Liling Balce, who claimed to be a former resident of ABORTION.
Kapagisahan Tigbinan, Labo, Camarines Norte testified that she
arrived in the house of Filomeno Salufrania at about 6:00 o'clock III
in the morning of 4 December 1974 after being called by one of
the latter's sons; that she saw Marciana still in a coma lying on
the lap of her husband who informed her that Marciana was THE TRIAL COURT ERRED IN DISCREDITING THE
suffering from an old stomach ailment. EVIDENCE FOR THE ACCUSED.

The accused Filomeno Salufrania admitted that he was that Appellant alleges that the trial court failed to determine the
lawful husband of the deceased Marciana Abuyo; that at around competence of Pedro Salufrania before he was allowed to testify.
9:00 o'clock in the morning of 3 December 1974, Marciana Since Pedro was allegedly a child of tender age, being only
arrived home from Talisay where she had earlier stayed for about thirteen (13) years old when he testified, and only eleven (11)
a week; that she was hungry upon her arrival, so he allegedly years old when the offense charged occurred, he is presumed
cooked their food and after eating their lunch, he proceeded to incompetent under Rule 130 Sec. 19 (b) of the Revised Rules of
his work while his wife rested in their house; that when he Court, which includes among those who cannot be witnesses:
returned home at 3:00 o'clock in the afternoon of that same day,
his wife complained to him of stomach pain and he was told to Children who appear to the court to be of such
prepare the beddings because she was already sleepy; that at tender age and inferior capacity as to be
about 4:00 o'clock in the morning of 4 December 1974, he was incapable of receiving correct impressions of
awakened by his wife who was still complaining of stomach pain, the facts respecting which they are examined,
and that she asked for a drink of hot water; that while he was or of relating them truly.
boiling water, Geronimo Villan arrived and assisted him in
administering to his wife the native treatments known as "hilot" or
Therefore, according to appellant, for failure of the trial court to
massaging and "banti" that Geronimo Villan and Francisco
determine Pedro's competence, the presumption of
Repuya alternately applied "bantil" to his wife but when her
incompetency was not rebutted and Pedro's testimony should
condition worsened, he woke up his children, Pedro and Alex to
not have been admitted. Moreover, appellant stresses that there
fetch Rico Villanueva who might be able to ,save the life of their
is no basis for the trial court's finding that Pedro is intelligent.
mother; that his children left and returned without Rico
Villanueva but the latter arrived a little later.
Appellant's contention is without merit. The record shows that
the trial court determined Pedro Salufrania's competency before
Accused-appellant then went on to say that he sent for Juanito
he was allowed to testify under oath. 2 The trial court's
Bragais but the latter was not able to cure his wife, since the
conclusion that Pedro was intelligent and competent is fully
latter was already dead when he arrived; that after the death of
supported by Pedro's responsiveness to the questions
his wife, he ordered his children to get the hammock of Kaloy
propounded to him when he was already under oath:
Belardo whose house was about two (2) kilometers away from
their house, and upon the arrival of the hammock, he placed the
body of his wife thereon and brought it to the house of his sister A. Did you go here in court
Consolacion Salufrania in Tigbinan; that while the corpse of to testify voluntarily?
Marciana Abuyo was at Tigbinan he sent Chiding and his elder
son to inform the brothers and sisters of his wife at Talisay about Q. Yes, Your Honor.
her death and that Leonila Abuyo and Salvador Abuyo came;
that he informed the Barangay Captain of Tigbinan of the cause
A. Were you not forced by
of death of his wife; that upon the suggestion of the brothers and
your uncle to testify in his
sisters of Marciana Abuyo, especially Salvador Abuyo, the body
case?
of their sister was brought home to Talisay and thereafter buried
at the Talisay Cemetery; that there was no quarrel between him
and his wife that preceded the latter's death, and that during the Q. No, I was not forced by
lifetime of the deceased, they loved each other; that after her my uncle.
burial, his son Pedro Salufrania was taken by his brother-in-law
Narciso Abuyo and since then, he was not able to talk to his son xxx xxx xxx
until during the trial; and that at the time of death of his wife,
aside from the members of his family, Geronimo Villan Francisco
Repuya and Liling Angeles Balce were also present. A. The accused is your
father?
44

Q. Yes, sir. of December 4. It must be noted that he affirmed twice during


cross-examination that his mother died on December 3, just as
A. Do you love him? he had testified during direct examination. Significantly, he did
not mention December 4 as the date when she died, as
appellant would make it appear. Pedro merely answered 'yes' to
Q. No, sir. the question "And isn't it that your mother died in the early
morning on that day (December 4) and not on the evening of
A. Your father is accused December 3?" 4 Thus, Pedro's answer could have resulted only
now of crime which carries from a misapprehension of the a question, and for no other
the penalty of death, are you reason.
still willing to testify against
him? Second, appellant alleges that Pedro testified on direct
examination that he saw appellant leave the house to get a
xxx xxx xxx hammock after strangling the victim and then came back the
following morning. However, upon cross-examination, Pedro
Q. Why did you say that you testified that appellant left at noon or in the afternoon of
don't love your father December 4. Moreover, Pedro allegedly testified on re-direct that
he saw appellant sleep beside the dead body of his mother.
Again Pedro misapprehended the question propounded to him.
A. Because he killed my Ajudicious reading of the transcript will bear this out:
mother.
Q. When did your father
Q. And that is the reason leave to get the hammock?
why you hate your father
now?
A. In the afternoon.

A. Yes, sir. (tsn., pp. 3, 7,17,


Nov. 12, 1976). Q. That may be when the
body was brought to Talisay.
When your father, rather,
Pedro's strong sense of moral duty to tell the truth, even though when you said that your
it should lead to his father's conviction, shows that he fully father left to get a hammock
appreciated the meaning of an oath, which likewise proves that so that your mother may be
he was no longer a child of tender years at the time of his brought to Tigbinan what
testimony. time was that?

Appellant also alleges that, since Pedro changed his answer A. About 12:00 o'clock noon.
from no to yes when he was asked whether he was threatened (Tsn, p. 16, Nov. 12, 1976)
by his uncle to testify against his father, shows that Pedro was
lying and proves that he did not appreciate the meaning of an
oath at all. 3 One may discern that the court itself noticed that there was a
missapprehension when it commented "that maybe when the
body was brought to Talisay" after Pedro answered "In the
Again, this contention is without merit, Pedro became confused afternoon". When Pedro answered "about 12:00 noon' he must
when the trial court ordered that the original question be have been referring to the time when appellant carried his dead
reformed. Pedro's confusion is apparent from the fact that when wife to Tigbinan. It must be noted that the question was so
asked the third time, he affirmed his first answer, worded that it could have misled Pedro to think that what was
being asked was the time when appellant brought his dead wife
Q. Isn't it that your uncle to Tigbinan. In fact, there is nothing inconsistent with Pedro's
threatened you with bodily testimony that he saw his father leave in the evening of
harm if you will not give December 3 and again saw him asleep and thus not noticed
statement before the police? appellant's coming back after securing a hammock and sleeping
beside the deceased. Pedro was therefore telling the truth when
he said that, upon waking up, he saw his father sleeping beside
A. No, sir.
his dead mother. By then, appellant had already returned with
the hammock.
xxx xxx xxx
Third, Pedro allegedly testified on direct examination that the
Q. But later you actually corpse was carried to Tigbinan in the morning of December 4,
went with your uncle to the while on cross-examination, he said it was in the evening. 5 It
police because you were must be pointed out that Pedro merely answered "yes" to a
threatened by him with question purportedly mentioning the time when the victim's body
bodily harm if you will not was transferred to Tigbinan. The question is as follows: "The
follow him? corpse of your mother was brought to the Tigbinan proper when
the vigil was had in the evening of December 4, is that right?" It
A. Yes, sir. is to be noted that the question's thrust is whether or not the
victim's body was brought to Tigbinan. The time it was brought
was merely incidental. Thus, Pedro may not have paid attention
Q. Is it true that your uncle
to the part of the question involving time. Moreover, the phrase
threatened you with bodily
"in the evening" may have referred either to the time of transport
harm if you will not give
of the body or to the vigil, which could have definitely confused
statement to the police?
Pedro.

A. No, sir. (tsn., pp. 6, 7,


Fourth, Pedro allegedly testified on direct examination that he,
Nov. 12, 1976)
together with his brothers and sister, kept vigil beside their
mother's dead body that night, while on cross-examination, he
Appellant next lists the following alleged inconsistencies to testified that they just kept lying down and pretended to
discredit the testimony of Pedro. First, Pedro testified on direct sleep. 6 There is nothing inconsistent here. The children could
examination that his mother died in the evening of December 3. have kept vigil while lying down with their deceased mother.
while on cross-examination he said that she died in the morning
45

Appellant further cites other alleged improbabilities to discredit details of the horrible occurence that took
Pedro's testimony. Appellant contends that it was improbable for place at about 6:00 o'clock in the evening of
Pedro to have seen the attack on his mother since he testified December 3, 1974 in their small house at a far
that the room was dimly lighted, and that, while the attach was away sitio of Tigbinan, Labo, Camarines Norte,
going on, he closed his eyes pretending to sleep. 7 This resulting in the untimely and cruel death of her
contention is without merit. Even though the room was dimly (sic) mother. He and his brother Alex were the
lighted, Pedro was only two (2) meters away from his parents; only eyewitnesses to the gory crime committed
thus, he could easily see, as he saw, the attack on his by their father. The credibility of this witness
mother. 8 Also, although he pretended to be asleep, it was (Pedro Salufrania) and his testimony was
unlikely that he kept his eyes closed all the while, as he was invested when, despite rigid cross-
aware that a fight was going on. Rather, it was to be expected examination, the veracity of his testimony in
that he had his eyes open and, thus, he saw the heinous crime chief was not impeached. He remained firm
unfold and ultimately consumated. and on the verge of crying, when he pointed
an accusing finger at his father during the trial.
Appellant alleges that he does not believe that it was fear of him He was unshaken notwithstanding a long and
that caused the delay in Pedro's divulging the real cause of his detailed cross-examination. And, there is
mother's death until 10 December 1974. According to appellant, reason to bestow complete credence to his
such fear could no longer have influenced Pedro from December testimony because he had the opportunity to
6, the date he started to live separately from him. This contention closely observe how his father had deliberately
is untenable. Even though Pedro started to live separately from and cruelly ended the life of his mother.
his father from December 6, it cannot be said that the influence Despite his tender age and apparent childish
of appellant's threat suddenly ceased from that time. It must be innocence, this Court believes that he can
noted that Pedro was young and was still very much under clearly perceive and perceiving, make known
appellant's influence and control. The thought and memory of his his perception, precluding the possibility of
father's viciousness were still too fresh even after three days coaching or tutoring by someone. His
from his mother's death. The fear that he too could be killed by declaration as to when, where and how the
appellant in like manner must have deterred him from divulging horrible incident complained of happened is
the truth earlier. the believable version.15

Appellant also alleges that it was improbable for Pedro to have Appellant questions the competence of Dr. Dyquiangco as an
just watched the killing of his mother. This contention is expert witness, since this is the first time that the doctor
untenable. At that moment, when his mother was being conducted an autopsy on a cadaver which had been buried for
assaulted and strangled, Pedro must have been so shocked as about a week. It must be noted, however, that although this was
to be rendered immobile and powerless to do anything. This is a the doctor's first autopsy under circumstances present in this
normal reaction in such a situation. Besides, it is a fact of life that case, he had, however, conducted similar post-
different people react differently to the same types of mortem examinations on ten (10) other occasions. This would
situations. 9 One cannot overlook that there is no standard form constitute sufficient experience. Significantly, appellant did not
of behaviour when one is confronted by a shocking occurrence.10 object to the doctor's expression of medical opinions during the
trial. Being an expert in his field, the doctor is presumed to have
taken all pertinent factors into consideration with regard to the
Appellant next alleges that since the prosecution has failed autopsy, including embalming and the state of the cadaver's
without satisfactory explanation to present Pedro's brother Alex decomposition. Dr. Juan Dyquiangco Jr., was a disinterested
who is alleged to be also an eyewitness to the killing of the witness in the case, and a reputable public official in whose favor
victim, it is presumed that Alex's testimony would be adverse to the presumption of regularity in the performance of official duties
the prosecution if presented. This contention is without merit. must be applied.
First, Alex, who is younger than Pedro by 3 years, may not have
been competent to testify due to his tender age. Second, even
assuming that he was competent to testify, his testimony could Appellant further alleges that the findings of Dr. Dyquiangco and
be merely corroborative. Corroboration is not necessary in this the testimony of Pedro Salufrania do not tally. Suffice it to say
case because the details of the crime have already been testified that the Court finds no inconsistencies between the findings of
to by Pedro with sufficient clarity. The failure to present all the Dr. Dyquiangco and Pedro Salufrania's testimony. Both are
eyewitnesses to an act does not necessarily give rise to an consistent on material points. Thus, the Court sees no reason to
unfavorable presumption, especially when the testimony of the disturb the conclusions reached by the trial court insofar as their
witness sought to be presented is merely credibility and the appellant's guilt are concerned.
corroborative. 11 Witnesses are to be weighed, not numbered,
and it is a well established rule that the testimony of a single Appellant's third assignment of error alleges that the trial court
witness, even if uncorroborated, but positive and credible, is erred in discrediting his evidence simply because the testimonies
sufficient to support a conviction. 12 In any event, it is not for the of the defense witnesses were consistent on material points.
appellant to say how many witnesses the prosecution should Moreover, there is no showing, according to the appellant, that
have presented. 13 said testimonies were rehearsed so as to dovetail with each
other.
The inconsistencies magnified by appellant in the testimony of
Pedro Salufrania have been satisfactorily explained. In fact, This contention is without merit. The Court notes, first of all, that
some of them are not material since they neither touch upon the appellant did not even bother to discuss his defense in order to
manner of death of the victim nor question the identity of the refute the massive evidence against him. This is tantamount to
killer, both of which were unwaveringly testified upon by Pedro. an admission that he could not adequately support his version of
Thus, with the alleged inconsistencies and improbabilities Marciana Abuyo's death. The trial court's reasons for rejecting
explained away, Pedro's testimony remains unperturbed. Even if the defense version, as hereunder quoted, are tenable and
there were discrepancies, such discrepancies were minor and sound. Thus —
may be considered as earmarks of verisimilitude.14
On the contrary, the testimonies of defense
The trial court's assessment of Pedro's testimony, as quoted witnesses Geronimo Villan, Angeles Liling
hereunder, deserves more than passing consideration: Balce and the accused Filomeno Salufrania
suspiciously dove-tailed in every detail as to
... The testimony of eye-witness Pedro when, where and how .Marciana Abuyo died at
Salufrania, 13-year old son of the victim 6:00 o'clock in the morning of 4 December
Marciana Abuyo and her killer-spouse 1974, in their house at sitio Kapagisahan
Filomeno Salufrania, appears to be very clear, Tigbinan Labo, Carnarines Norte, of stomach
convincing and truthful. It is vivid as to the pain. On these points, these witnesses and the
accused made statements which seemed to
46

be very fresh and clear in their minds, despite with Intentional Abortion but of the complex crime of Parricide
the lapse of four long years. Their exact and with Unintentional Abortion. The elements of Unintentional
uniform declarations on these points, their Abortion are as follows:
phenomenal recollections, without sufficient
special or uncommon reason to recall, 1. That there is a pregnant woman.
rendered their testimonies unconvincing. If at
all, their testimonies appeared to this Court to
be an eleventh hour concoction. And, as 2. That violence is used upon such pregnant
defense witnesses, after observing them and woman without intending an abortion.
their declarations on the witness stand, they
appeared to the Court to be untruthful and 3. That the violence is intentionally exerted.
unreliable. For, despite the synchronization of
time when, the place where and how the 4. That as a result of the violence the foetus
incidence happened, their testimonies on other dies, either in the womb or after having been
material points revealed their tendency to expelled therefrom. 17
exaggerate and their propensity to falsehood,
thus-Aside from the accused Filomeno
Salufrania, there are three other witnesses for The Solicitor General's brief makes it appear that
the defense Geronimo Villan Angeles Liling appellant intended to cause an abortion because he boxed his
Balce and Juanita Bragais. There is nothing in pregnant wife on the stomach which caused her to fall and then
the testimony of Juanito Bragais because he strangled her. We find that appellant's intent to cause an abortion
did not witness how and when Marciana Abuyo has not been sufficiently established. Mere boxing on the
died. Francisco Repuya, who was also alleged stomach, taken together with the immediate strangling of the
by Filomeno Salufrania to be present when victim in a fight, is not sufficient proof to show an intent to cause
Marciana Abuyo died, did not testify. Accused an abortion. In fact, appellant must have merely intended to kill
Filomeno Salufrania never claimed that he the victim but not necessarily to cause an abortion.
summoned for Angeles Liling Balce. According
to him Angeles Liling Balce was not present The evidence on record, therefore, establishes beyond
during the moment of death of Marciana reasonable doubt that accused Filomeno Salufrania committed
Abuyo, for she was fetched by him only after and should be held liable for the complex crime of parricide with
the death of his wife. Logically, therefore, there unintentional abortion. The abortion, in this case, was caused by
is no basis for the presentation of Angeles the same violence that caused the death of Marciana Abuyo,
Liling Balce that she was present during the such violence being voluntarily exerted by the herein accused
moment of death of Marciana Abuyo. She was upon his victim.
merely play-acting. Geronimo Villan who
claimed he passed-by the house of Filomeno
It has also been clearly established (a) that Marciana Abuyo was
Salufrania and saw the latter boiling water with
seven (7) to eight (8) months pregnant when she was killed; (b)
"ikmo" and garlic, as medicine for his wife
that violence was voluntarily exerted upon her by her husband
Marciana Abuyo, who was about to give birth
accused; and (c) that, as a result of said violence, Marciana
was discredited by accused himself who
Abuyo died together with the foetus in her womb. In this
declared he was merely boiling water for the
afternoon, Article 48 of the Revised Penal Code states that the
hot drink of his wife, who was suferring from
accused should be punished with the penalty corresponding to
her old stomach ailment. In like manner,
the more serious came of parricide, to be imposed in its
witness Geronimo Villan discredited the
maximum period which is death. However, by reason of the 1987
accused Filomeno Salufrania, about the
Constitution which has abolished the death penalty, appellant
presence of Francisco Repuya, who allegedly
should be sentenced to suffer the penalty of reclusion perpetua.
alternated with Geronimo Villan in applying the
native treatments of 'hilot' and 'bantil' to
Marciana Abuyo, when throughout his WHEREFORE, as modified, the judgment appealed from is
testimony he (Geronimo Villan) never AFFIRMED. Accused-appellant is hereby sentenced to suffer the
mentioned the presence of Francisco Repuya. penalty of reclusion perpetua. The indemnity of P12,000. 00
awarded to the heirs of the deceased Marciana Abuyo is
increased to P30,000.00 in line with the recent decisions of the
After closely observing defense witnesses
Court. With costs against the appellant,
Geronimo Villan and Angeles Liling Balce, this
Court is convinced that their testimonies and
accounts of the incident are fabricated, SO ORDERED.
untruthful and not worth of credence. Certainly,
they were not present immediately before and
during the moment of death of Marciana
Abuyo. ...

Added to these, there is one scandalous ABORTION


circumstance, which to the mind of this Court,
betrays the guilty conscience of the accused. If RA 4729
there was nothing revealing in the face of the
deceased Marciana Abuyo, why was her face
REPUBLIC ACT NO. 4729
covered by a piece of cloth by the accused. ...

Trial judges are in the best position to ascertain the truth and
AN ACT TO REGULATE THE SALE, DISPENSATION, AND/OR
detect falsehoods in the testimony of witnesses. This Court will
normally not disturb the findings of the trial court on the DISTRIBUTION OF CONTRACEPTIVE DRUGS AND DEVICES
credibility of witnesses, in view of its advantage in observing first
Section 1. It shall be unlawful for any person, partnership, or
hand their demeanor in giving their testimony.16 Such rule applies
in the present case. corporation, to sell, dispense or otherwise distribute whether for
or without consideration, any contraceptive drug or device,
unless such sale, dispensation or distribution is by a duly
Lastly, appellant alleges that, assuming he indeed killed his wife,
there is no evidence to show that he had the intention to cause licensed drug store or pharmaceutical company and with the
an abortion. In this contention, appellant is correct. He should prescription of a qualified medical practitioner.
not be held guilty of the complex crime of Parricide
47

Section 2. For the purpose of this Act: Michelina S. Aguirre-Olondriz (Olondriz), Dr. Juvido Agatep (Dr.
(a) “Contraceptive drug” is any medicine, drug, chemical, or Agatep), Dr. Marissa B. Pascual (Dr. Pascual) and several
portion which is used exclusively for the purpose of preventing John/Jane Does for falsification, mutilation and child abuse.
fertilization of the female ovum: and
The antecedents of the present petition are:
(b) “Contraceptive device” is any instrument, device, material, or
agent introduced into the female reproductive system for the
primary purpose of preventing conception. Laureano "Larry" Aguirre7 used to be a charge of the Heart of
Mary Villa, a child caring agency run by the Good Shepherd
Section 3. Any person, partnership, or corporation, violating the Sisters and licensed by the Department of Social Work and
provisions of this Act shall be punished with a fine of not more Development (DSWD). Sometime in 1978, respondent Pedro
than five hundred pesos or an imprisonment of not less than six Aguirre; the latter's spouse, Lourdes S. Aguirre (Lourdes
months or more than one year or both in the discretion of the Aguirre); and their four daughters, who included petitioner Gloria
Court. Aguirre and respondent Olondriz, came to know Larry, who was
then just over a year old. The Aguirres would have Larry spend a
This Act shall take effect upon its approval.
few days at their home and then return him to the orphanage
Approved, June 18, 1966. thereafter. In June 1980, Larry, then two years and nine months
of age, formally became the ward of respondent Pedro Aguirre
and his spouse Lourdes Aguirre by virtue of an Affidavit of
MUTILATION Consent to Legal Guardianshipexecuted in their favor by Sister
Mary Concepta Bellosillo, Superior of the Heart of Mary Villa. On
AGUIRRE v. SECRETARY OF JUSTICE 19 June 1986, the Aguirre spouses' guardianship of Larry was
legalized when the Regional Trial Court (RTC), Branch 3 of
Republic of the Philippines Balanga, Bataan, duly appointed them as joint co-guardians over
SUPREME COURT the person and property of Larry.
Manila
As Larry was growing up, the Aguirre spouses and their children
THIRD DIVISION noticed that his developmental milestones were remarkably
delayed. His cognitive and physical growth did not appear
normal in that "at age 3 to 4 years, Larry could only crawl on his
G.R. No. 170723 March 3, 2008
tummy like a frog x x x;" 8 he did not utter his first word until he
was three years of age; did not speak in sentences until his sixth
GLORIA PILAR S. AGUIRRE, petitioner,
year; and only learned to stand up and walk after he turned five
vs.
years old. At age six, the Aguirre spouses first enrolled Larry at
SECRETARY OF THE DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE,
the Colegio de San Agustin, Dasmariñas Village, but the child
MICHELINA S. AGUIRRE-OLONDRIZ, PEDRO B. AGUIRRE,
experienced significant learning difficulties there. In 1989, at age
DR. JUVIDO AGATEP and DR. MARISSA B.
eleven, Larry was taken to specialists for neurological and
PASCUAL, respondents.
psychological evaluations. The psychological evaluation9 done
on Larry revealed the latter to be suffering from a mild mental
DECISION deficiency.10 Consequent thereto, the Aguirre spouses
transferred Larry to St. John Ma. Vianney, an educational
CHICO-NAZARIO, J.: institution for special children.

In this petition for review on certiorari1 under Rule 45 of the In November of 2001, respondent Dr. Agatep, a
Rules of Court, as amended, petitioner Gloria Pilar S. Aguirre urologist/surgeon, was approached concerning the intention to
(Gloria Aguirre) seeks the reversal of the 21 July 2005 have Larry, then 24 years of age, vasectomized. Prior to
Decision2 and 5 December 2005 Resolution,3 both of the Court of performing the procedure on the intended patient, respondent
Appeals in CA-G.R. SP No. 88370, entitled "Gloria Pilar S. Dr. Agatep required that Larry be evaluated by a psychiatrist in
Aguirre v. Secretary of the Department of Justice, Michelina S. order to confirm and validate whether or not the former could
Aguirre-Olondriz, Dr. Juvido Agatep, Dra. Marissa B. Pascual, validly give his consent to the medical procedure on account of
Pedro B. Aguirre and John and Jane Does." his mental deficiency.

The Court of Appeals found no grave abuse of discretion on the In view of the required psychiatric clearance, Larry was brought
part of the Secretary of the Department of Justice (DOJ) when to respondent Dr. Pascual, a psychiatrist, for evaluation. In a
the latter issued the twin resolutions dated 11 February psychiatric report dated 21 January 2002, respondent Dr.
20044 and 12 November 2004,5 respectively, which in turn Pascual made the following recommendation:
affirmed the 8 January 2003 Resolution6 of the Office of the City
Prosecutor (OCP) of Quezon City. [T]he responsibility of decision making may be given to his
parent or guardian.11
The Assistant City Prosecutor for the OCP of Quezon City
recommended the dismissal of the criminal complaint, docketed the full text of which reads –
as I.S. No. 02-12466, for violation of Articles 172 (Falsification by
Private Individuals and Use of Falsified Documents) and 262
PSYCHIATRY REPORT
(Mutilation), both of the Revised Penal Code, in relation to
Republic Act No. 7610, otherwise known as "Child Abuse,
21 January 2002
Exploitation and Discrimination Act," for insufficiency of
evidence.
GENERAL DATA
The case stemmed from a complaint filed by petitioner Gloria
Aguirre against respondents Pedro B. Aguirre (Pedro Aguirre),
48

LAUREANO AGUIRRE, 24 years old, male, high school comparable to a 7-8 year old. He demonstrated fair judgment
graduate of St. John [Marie Vianney], was referred for psychiatric and poor insight. He had fair impulse control.
evaluation to determine competency to give consent for
vasectomy. PSYCHOLOGICAL TESTS

CLINICAL SUMMARY Psychological tests done on March 6, 1990 (Dr. Lourdes


Ledesma) and on August 4, 2000 (Dr. Ma. Teresa Gustilo-
Larry was adopted at age 3 from an orphanage and prenatal Villaosor) consistently revealed mild to moderate mental
history is not known to the adoptive family except that abortion deficiency.
was attempted. Developmental milestones were noted to be
delayed. He started to walk and speak in single word at around SIGNIFICANT LABORATORY EXAMS RESULTS
age 5. He was enrolled in Colegio de San Agustin at age 6
where he showed significant learning difficulties that he had to CT scan done 09 January 2001 showed nonspecific right deep
repeat 1st and 4th grades. A consult was done in 1989 when he parietal subcortical malacia. No localized mass lesion in the
was 11 years old. Neurological findings and EEG results were brain.
not normal and he was given Tecretol and Encephabol by his
neurologist. Psychological evaluation revealed mild to moderate
MRI done on 10 January 2001 showed bilateral parietal x x x
mental retardation, special education training was advised and
volume loss, encephalomalacia, gliosis and ulegyria consistent
thus, he was transferred to St. John Marie Vianney. He finished
with sequela of postnatal or neonatal infarcts. Ex-vacuo
his elementary and secondary education in the said school. He
dilatation of the atria of lateral ventricles associated thinned
was later enrolled in a vocational course at Don Bosco which he
posterior half of the corpus callosum.
was unable to continue. There has been no reported behavioral
problems in school and he gets along relatively well with his
teachers and some of his classmates. ASSESSMENT AND RECOMMENDATION

Larry grew up with a very supportive adoptive family. He is the Axis I None
youngest in the family of four sisters. Currently, his adoptive
parents are already old and have medical problem and thus, Axis II Mental Retardation, mild to moderate type
they could no longer monitor and take care of him like before.
His adoptive mother has Bipolar Mood Disorder and used to Axis III None
physically maltreat him. A year ago, he had an episode of
dizziness, vomiting and headaches after he was hit by his Axis IV None at present
adoptive mother. Consult was done in Makati Medical Center
and several tests were done, results of which were consistent
Axis V Current GAF = 50-60
with his developmental problem. There was no evidence of acute
insults. The family subsequently decided that he should stay with
Larry's mental deficiency could be associated with possible
one of his sisters to avoid similar incident and the possibility that
perinatal insults, which is consistent with the neuroimaging
he would retaliate although he has never hurt anybody. There
findings. Mental retardation associated with neurological
has been no episode of violent outburst or aggressive behavior.
problems usually has poorer prognosis. Larry is very much
He would often keep to himself when sad, angry or frustrated.
dependent on his family for his needs, adaptive functioning,
direction and in making major life decisions. At his capacity, he
He is currently employed in the company of his sister and given
may never understand the nature, the foreseeable risks and
assignment to do some photocopying, usually in the mornings.
benefits, and consequences of the procedure (vasectomy) that
He enjoys playing billiards and basketball with his nephews and,
his family wants for his protection. Thus, the responsibility of
he spends most of his leisure time watching TV and listening to
decision making may be given to his parent or guardian.
music. He could perform activities of daily living without
assistance except that he still needs supervision in taking a bath.
He cannot prepare his own meal and never allowed to go out Marissa B. Pascual, M.D.
and run errands alone. He does not have friends and it is only Psychiatrist12
his adoptive family whom he has significant relationships. He
claims that he once had a girlfriend when he was in high school
Considering the above recommendation, respondent Pedro
who was more like a best friend to him. He never had sexual
Aguirre's written consent was deemed sufficient in order to
relations. He has learned to smoke and drink alcohol few years
proceed with the conduct of the vasectomy. Hence, on 31
ago through his cousins and the drivers. There is no history of
January 2002, respondent Dr. Agatep performed a bilateral
abuse of alcohol or any prohibited substances.
vasectomy on Larry.

MEDICAL STATUS EXAMINATION


On 11 June 2002, petitioner Gloria Aguirre, respondent Pedro
Aguirre's eldest child, instituted a criminal complaint for the
The applicant was appropriately dressed. He was cooperative violation of the Revised Penal Code, particularly Articles 172 and
and he had intermittent eye contact. Speech was spontaneous, 262, both in relation to Republic Act No. 7610 against
soft, and relevant. He responded to questions in single words or respondents Pedro Aguirre, Olondriz, Dr. Agatep, Dr. Pascual
simple sentences. He was anxious specially at the start of the and several John/Jane Does before the Office of the City
interview, with full affect appropriate to mood and thought Prosecutor of Quezon City.
content. There was no apparent thought or perceptual
disturbance. No suicidal/homicidal thoughts elicited. He was
The Complaint Affidavit,13 docketed as I.S. No. 02-12466,
oriented to time, place and person. He has intact remote and
contained the following allegations:
recent memory. He could do simple calculation. He could write
his name and read simple words. His human figure was
49

2. x x x Dr. Agatep and Dra. Pascual were (sic) medical 6. Neither did I procure or solicit the services of the physician
practitioners specializing in urology and psychiatry respectively; who performed the vasectomy, Dr. Juvido Agatep x x x. It was
while respondent Pedro B. Aguirre is my father; Michelina S. my father, Pedro Aguirre, Larry's guardian, who obtained his
Aguirre-Olondriz is my sister, and the victim Laureano "Larry" services. I merely acted upon his instructions and accompanied
Aguirre xxx is my common law brother. JOHN and JANE DOES my brother to the physician, respondents Dra. Marissa B.
were the persons who, acting upon the apparent instructions of Pascual x x x.
respondents Michelina Aguirre-Olondriz and/or Pedro B. Aguirre,
actually scouted, prospected, facilitated, solicited and/or xxxx
procured the medical services of respondents Dra. Pascual and
Dr. Agatep vis-à-vis the intended mutilation via bilateral 10. Neither does the Complaint explain in whatmanner the
vasectomy of my common law brother Larry Aguirre subject Complainant is authorized or has any standing to declare that
hereof. Larry's consent was not obtained. Complainant is not the
guardian or relative of Larry. While she argues that Larry's
xxxx consent should have been obtained the Complaint does not
dispute the psychiatrist's findings about Larry's inability to give
4. Sometime in March 2002, however, the Heart of Mary Villa of consent.
the Good Shepherd Sisters was furnished a copy of respondent
Dra. Pascual's Psychiatry Report dated 21 January 2004 by the xxxx
"DSWD," in which my common law brother "Larry" was falsely
and maliciously declared incompetent and incapable of 13. x x x the Complaint does not even state what alleged
purportedly giving his own consent to the MUTILATION VIA participation was falsified or the portion of the psychiatric report
BILATERAL VASECTOMY intended to be performed on him by that allegedly states that someone participated when in fact that
all the respondents. person did not so participate.

xxxx xxxx

6. Based on the foregoing charade and false pretenses 15. Again, I had no participation in the preparation of the report
invariably committed by all of the respondents in conspiracy with of Dr. Pascual x x x.
each other, on 31 January 2002, my common law brother Larry
Aguirre, although of legal age but conspiratorially caused to be
xxxx
declared by respondents to be "mentally deficient" and
incompetent to give consent to his BILATERAL VASECTOMY,
was then intentionally, unlawfully, maliciously, feloniously and/or 17. x x x the Complaint does not dispute that he (Larry) is
criminally placed thereafter under surgery for MUTILATION VIA mentally deficient or incompetent to give consent.
"BILATERAL VASECTOMY" x x x, EVEN WITHOUT ANY
AUTHORIZATION ORDER from the GUARDIANSHIP COURT, xxxx
nor personal consent of Larry Aguirre himself.
19. x x x I verified that the effect of a vasectomy operation was
In addition to the above, the complaint included therein an explained to him (Larry) by both respondent doctors.
allegation that –
20. x x x I accompanied Larry and obeyed my father on the belief
v. x x x without a PRIOR medical examination, professional that my father continues to be the legal guardian of Larry. I know
interview of nor verification and consultation with my mother, of no one else who asserts to be his legal guardian x x x.15
Lourdes Sabino-Aguirre, respondent Dra. Pascual baselessly,
fraudulently and with obvious intent to defame and malign her Alleging the same statement of facts and defenses, respondent
reputation and honor, and worse, that of our Sabido family, Pedro Aguirre argues against his complicity in the crime of
falsely concluded and diagnosed, via her falsified Psychiatry mutilation as charged and asserts that:
Report, that my mother Lourdes Sabido-Aguirre purportedly
suffers from "BIPOLAR MOOD DISORDER" x x x. 5. In any case, as I did not perform the vasectomy, I can state
with complete confidence that I did not participate in any way in
To answer petitioner Gloria Aguirre's accusations against them, the alleged mutilation.16
respondents Pedro Aguirre, Olondriz, Dr. Agatep and Dr. Pascual
submitted their respective Counter-Affidavits. Nevertheless, he maintains that the vasectomy performed on
Larry does not in any way amount to mutilation, as the latter's
In her defense,14 respondent Olondriz denied that she reproductive organ is still completely intact. 17 In any case,
"prospected, scouted, facilitated, solicited and/or procured any respondent Pedro Aguirre explains that the procedure performed
false statement, mutilated or abused" her common-law brother, is reversible through another procedure called Vasovasostomy,
Larry Aguirre. Further, she countered that: to wit:

3. x x x While I am aware and admit that Larry went through a 8. I understand that vasectomy is reversible through a procedure
vasectomy procedure, there is nothing in the Complaint which called Vasovasostomy. I can also state with confidence that the
explains how the vasectomy amounts to a mutilation. procedure enables men who have undergone a vasectomy to
sire a child. Hence, no permanent damage was caused by the
xxxx procedure.

5. In any case, as I did not perform the vasectomy, I can state Respondent Pedro Aguirre challenges the charge of falsification
with complete confidence that I did not participate in any way in in the complaint, to wit:
the alleged mutilation.
50

14. x x x I did not make it appear that any person participated in has a legal guardian in the person of Pedro Aguirre, one of the
any act or proceeding when that person did not in fact participate herein respondents x x x.
x x x.
2. x x x [t]he allegations in the complaint clearly centers on the
xxxx condition of complainant's mother, Lourdes Aguirre, her
reputation, and miserably fails to implicate the degree of
16. x x x I had no participation in the preparation of the report of participation of herein respondent. x x x
Dra. Pascual. She arrived at her report independently, using her
own professional judgment x x x. xxxx

xxxx (b) Falsification. x x x I strongly aver that this felony does not
apply to me since it clearly gives reference to co-respondent, Dr.
31. What I cannot understand about Petita's Complaint is how Marissa Pascual's Psychiatry Report, dated January 21, 2002, in
Larry is argued to be legally a child under the definition of one relation with her field of profession, an expert opinion. I do not
law but nonetheless and simultaneously argued to be have any participation in the preparation of said report, x x x
capacitated to give his consent as fully as an adult.18 neither did I utilized (sic) the same in any proceedings to the
damage to another. x x x I also deny using a falsified document x
Respondent Pedro Aguirre further clarifies that co-guardianship x x.
over Larry had been granted to himself and his wife, Lourdes
Aguirre, way back on 19 June 1986 by the Regional Trial Court, (c) Mutilation. x x x Vasectomy does not in anyway equate to
Branch 3 of Balanga, Bataan. Respondent Pedro Aguirre castration and what is touched in vasectomy is not considered
contends that being one of the legal guardians, consequently, an organ in the context of law and medicine, it is quite remote
parental authority over Larry is vested in him. But assuming for from the penis x x x.
the sake of argument that Larry does have the capacity to make
the decision concerning his vasectomy, respondent Pedro (d) Child Abuse. x x x the complaint-affidavit is very vague in
Aguirre argues that petitioner Gloria Aguirre has no legal specifying the applicability of said law. It merely avers that
personality to institute the subject criminal complaint, for only Laureano "Larry" Aguirre is a child, and alleges his father, Pedro
Larry would have the right to do so. Aguirre, has parental authority over him x x x.20

Just as the two preceding respondents did, respondent Dr. Similarly, respondent Dr. Pascual denied the criminal charges of
Agatep also disputed the allegations of facts stated in the falsification and mutilation imputed to her. She stands by the
Complaint. Adopting the allegations of his co-respondents contents of the assailed Psychiatric Report, justifying it thus:
insofar as they were material to the charges against him, he
vehemently denied failing to inform Larry of the intended x x x My opinion of Larry Aguirre's mental status was based on
procedure. In his counter-statement of facts he averred that: my own personal observations, his responses during my
interview of him, the results of the two (2) psychological tests
(b) x x x I scheduled Larry for consultative interview x x x conducted by clinical psychologists, the results of laboratory
wherein I painstakingly explained what vasectomy is and the tests, including a CT Scan and MRI, and his personal and family
consequences thereof; but finding signs of mental deficiency, x x history which I obtained from his sister, Michelina Aguirre-
x I advised his relatives and his nurse who accompanied him to Olondriz x x x.
have Larry examined by a psychiatrist who could properly
determine whether or not Larry x x x can really give his consent, 5. x x x the reference in my report concerning Mrs. Lourdes
thus I required them to secure first a psychiatric evaluation and Aguirre is not a statement of my opinion of Mrs. Aguirre's mental
clearance prior to the contemplated procedure. status, x x x. Rather, it is part of the patient's personal and family
history as conveyed to me by Mrs. Aguirre-Olondriz.
(c) On January 21, 2002, I was furnished a copy of a psychiatric
report prepared by Dr. Marissa Pascual x x x. In her said report, 6. x x x An expression of my opinion, especially of an expert
Dr. Pascual found Larry to suffer from "mental retardation, mild opinion, cannot give rise to a charge for falsification. A contrary
to moderate type" and further stated that "at his capacity, he may opinion by another expert only means that the experts differ, and
never understand the nature, the foreseeable risks and benefits does not necessarily reflect on the truth or falsity of either
and consequences of the procedure (vasectomy) x x x, thus the opinion x x x.
responsibility of decision making may be given to his parent or
guardian x x x." 7. x x x I never stated that I examined Mrs. Aguirre, because I
never did x x x.
(d) x x x I was likewise furnished a copy of an affidavit executed
by Pedro Aguirre stating that he was the legal guardian of Larry x 8. I had no participation in the surgery performed on Larry
x x Pedro Aguirre gave his consent to vasectomize Larry x x x. Aguirre except to render an opinion on his capacity to give
informed consent to the vasectomy x x x.
(e) Only then, specifically January 31, 2002, vasectomy was
performed with utmost care and diligence.19 9. Without admitting the merits of the complaint, I submit that
complainants are not the proper persons to subscribe to the
In defense against the charge of falsification and mutilation, same as they are not the offended party, peace officer or other
respondent Dr. Agatep argued that subject complaint should be public officer charged with the enforcement of the law violated x
dismissed for the following reasons: x x.21

1. The complainant has no legal personality to file this case. As The Assistant City Prosecutor held that the circumstances
mentioned above, she is only a common law sister of Larry who attendant to the case did not amount to the crime of falsification.
He held that –
51

[T]he claim of the complainant that the Psychiatric Report was In a Resolution dated 11 February 2004, Chief State Prosecutor
falsified, because consent was not given by Larry Aguirre to the Jovencito R. Zuño, for the Secretary of the DOJ, dismissed the
vasectomy and/or he was not consulted on said operation does petition. In resolving said appeal, the Chief State Prosecutor held
not constitute falsification. It would have been different if it was that:
stated in the report that consent was obtained from Larry Aguirre
or that it was written therein that he was consulted on the Under Section 12, in relation to Section 7, of Department
vasectomy, because that would mean that it was made to appear Circular No. 70 dated July 3, 2000, the Secretary of Justice
in the report that Larry Aguirre participated in the act or may, motu proprio, dismiss outright the petition if there is no
proceeding by giving his consent or was consulted on the matter showing of any reversible error in the questioned resolution or
when in truth and in fact, he did not participate. Or if not, the finds the same to be patently without merit.
entry would have been an untruthful statement. But that is not
the case. Precisely (sic) the report was made to determine We carefully examined the petition and its attachments and
whether Larry Aguirre could give his consent to his intended found no error that would justify a reversal of the assailed
vasectomy. Be that as it may, the matter of Larry's consent resolution which is in accord with the law and evidenced (sic) on
having obtained or not may nor be an issue after all, because the matter.29
complainant's (sic) herself alleged that Larry's mental condition is
that of a child, who can not give consent. Based on the foregoing
Petitioner Gloria Aguirre's Motion for Reconsideration was
consideration, no falsification can be established under the
likewise denied with finality by the DOJ in another Resolution
circumstances.22
dated 12 November 2004.

Even the statement in the Psychiatric Report of respondent Dr.


Resolute in her belief, petitioner Gloria Aguirre went to the Court
Pascual that Lourdes Aguirre had Bipolar Mood Disorder cannot
of Appeals by means of a Petition for Certiorari, Prohibition
be considered falsification since –
and Mandamus under Rule 65 of the Rules of Court, as
amended.
The report did not state that Lourdes Aguirre was in fact
personally interviewed by respondent Dr. Pascual and that the
On 21 July 2005, the Court of Appeals promulgated its Decision
latter concluded that Lourdes Aguirre has Bipolar Mood Disorder.
dismissing petitioner Gloria Aguirre's recourse for lack of merit.
The report merely quoted other sources of information with
respect to the condition of Lourdes Aguirre, in the same manner
that the fact that Lourdes Aguirre was physically abusing Larry The fallo of the assailed decision reads:
Aguirre was also not of Dra. Pascual personal knowledge. But
the fact that Dra. Pascual cited finding, which is not of her own WHEREFORE, premises considered, the present petition is
personal knowledge in her report does not mean that she hereby DENIED DUE COURSE and accordingly DISMISSED for
committed falsification in the process. Her sources may be lack of merit. Consequently, the assailed Resolutions dated
wrong and may affect the veracity of her report, but for as long February 11, 2004 and November 12, 2004 of the Secretary of
as she has not alleged therein that she personally diagnosed Justice in I.S. No. 02-12466 are hereby AFFIRMED.30
Lourdes Aguirre, which allegation would not then be true, she
cannot be charged of falsification. Therefore, it goes without Petitioner Gloria Aguirre's motion for reconsideration proved
saying that if the author of the report is not guilty, then with more futile as it was denied by the appellate court in a Resolution
reason the other respondents are not liable.23 dated 5 December 2005.

Respecting the charge of mutilation, the Assistant City Hence, the present petition filed under Rule 45 of the Rules of
Prosecutor also held that the facts alleged did not amount to the Court, as amended, premised on the following arguments:
crime of mutilation as defined and penalized under Article 262 of
the Revised Penal Code, i.e., "[t]he vasectomy operation did not I.
in any way deprived (sic) Larry of his reproductive organ, which
is still very much part of his physical self." He ratiocinated that:
THE COURT OF APPEALS COMMITTED SERIOUS, GRAVE
AND REVERSIBLE ERRORS OF LAW WHEN IT CONCLUDED,
While the operation renders him the inability (sic) to procreate, BASED PURPORTEDLY ON THE INTERNET WHICH RUNS
the operation is reversible and therefore, cannot be the AMUCK WITH OUR SYSTEM OF THE RULE OF LAW AND
permanent damage contemplated under Article 262 of the THE EVIDENCE ON RECORD, THAT BILATERAL
Revised Penal Code.24 VASECTOMY IS PURPORTEDLY 100% REVERSIBLE BY A
FUTURE MEDICAL PROCEDURE HENCE NOT AMOUNTING
The Assistant City Prosecutor,25 in a Resolution26 dated 8 TO MUTILATION, X X X; AND
January 2003, found no probable cause to hold respondents
Pedro Aguirre, Olondriz, Dr. Agatep and Dr. Pascual liable for the xxxx
complaint of falsification and mutilation, more specifically, the
violation of Articles 172 and 262 of the Revised Penal Code, in
II.
relation to Republic Act No. 7610. Accordingly, the Assistant City
Prosecutor recommended the dismissal of petitioner Gloria
WORSE, THE COURT OF APPEALS COMMITTED GRAVE,
Aguirre's complaint for insufficiency of evidence. The dispositive
SERIOUS AND REVERSIBLE ERRORS OF LAW WHEN IT
portion of the resolution reads:
REFUSED TO DIRECT THE INDICTMENT OF THE PRIVATE
RESPONDENTS FOR MUTILATION AND FALSIFICATION
WHEREFORE, it is recommended that the above-entitled case
DESPITE THE EXISTENCE OF SUFFICIENT PROBABLE
be dismissed for insufficiency of evidence.27
CAUSE THEREFOR X X X.31

On 18 February 2003, petitioner Gloria Aguirre appealed the


The foregoing issues notwithstanding, the more proper issue for
foregoing resolution to the Secretary of the DOJ by means of a
this Court's consideration is, given the facts of the case, whether
Petition for Review.28
52

or not the Court of Appeals erred in ruling that the DOJ did not Likewise, in support of the decision of the Court of Appeals,
commit grave abuse of discretion amounting to lack or excess of respondents Pedro Aguirre and Olondriz assert that,
jurisdiction when the latter affirmed the public prosecutor's fundamentally, petitioner Gloria Aguirre has no standing to file
finding of lack of probable cause for respondents Pedro Aguirre, the complaint, as she has not shown any injury to her person or
Olondriz, Dr. Agatep and Dr. Pascual to stand trial for the asserted any relationship with Larry other than being his
criminal complaints of falsification and mutilation in relation to "common law sister"; further, that she cannot prosecute the
Republic Act No. 7610. present case, as she has not been authorized by law to file said
complaint, not being the offended party, a peace officer or a
In ruling that the DOJ did not commit grave abuse of discretion public officer charged with the enforcement of the law.
amounting to lack or excess of jurisdiction, the Court of Appeals Accordingly, respondents Pedro Aguirre and Olondriz posit that
explained that: they, together with the other respondents Dr. Agatep and Dr.
Pascual, may not be charged with, prosecuted for and ultimately
Evidently, the controversy lies in the permanency of sterilization convicted of: 1) "mutilation x x x since the bilateral vasectomy
as a result of a vasectomy operation, and the chances of conducted on Larry does not involve castration or amputation of
restoring fertility with a reversal surgery x x x. an organ necessary for reproduction as the twin elements of the
crime of mutilation x x x are absent" 39; and 2) "falsification x x x
since the acts allegedly constituting falsification involve matters
We sustain the DOJ in ruling that the bilateral vasectomy
of medical opinion and not matters of fact," 40 and that petitioner
performed on Larry does not constitute mutilation even if
Gloria Aguirre failed to prove damage to herself or to any other
intentionally and purposely done to prevent him from siring a
person.
child.

Respondent Dr. Agatep, in the same vein, stresses that


xxxx
vasectomy is not mutilation. He elucidates that vasectomy is
merely the "excision of the vas deferens, the duct in testis which
Sterilization is to be distinguished from castration: in the latter transport semen"41; that it is the penis and the testis that make
act the reproductive capacity is permanently removed or up the male reproductive organ and not the vas deferens; and
damaged.32 additionally argues that for the crime of mutilation to be
accomplished, Article 262 of the Revised Penal Code
It then concluded that: necessitates that there be intentional total or partial deprivation
of some essential organ for reproduction. Tubes, seminal ducts,
The matter of legal liability, other than criminal,which private vas deferens or prostatic urethra not being organs, respondent
respondents may have incurred for the alleged absence of a Dr. Agatep concludes, therefore, that vasectomy does not
valid consent to the vasectomy performed on Larry, is certainly correspond to mutilation.
beyond the province of this certiorari petition. Out task is
confined to the issue of whether or not the Secretary of Justice Anent the charge of falsification of a private document,
and the Office of the City Prosecutor of Quezon City committed respondent Dr. Agatep asseverates that he never took part in
grave abuse of discretion in their determining the existence or disclosing any information, data or facts as contained in the
absence of probable cause for filing criminal cases contentious Psychiatric Report.
for falsification and mutilation under Articles 172 (2) and 262 of
the Revised Penal Code.33 For her part, respondent Dr. Pascual insists that the assailed
Psychiatry Report was the result of her independent exercise of
Petitioner Gloria Aguirre, however, contends that the Court of professional judgment. "Rightly or wrongly, (she) diagnosed
Appeals and the DOJ failed to appreciate several important Larry Aguirre to be incapable of giving consent, based on
facts: 1) that bilateral vasectomy conducted on petitioner's interviews made by the psychiatrist on Larry Aguirre and persons
brother, Larry Aguirre, was admitted34; 2) that the procedure who interacted with him."42And supposing that said report is
caused the perpetual destruction of Larry's reproductive organs flawed, it is, at most, an erroneous medical diagnosis.
of generation or conception;353) that the bilateral vasectomy was
intentional and deliberate to deprive Larry forever of his The petition has no merit.
reproductive organ and his capacity to procreate; and 4) that
respondents, "in conspiracy with one another, made not only one
Probable cause has been defined as the existence of such facts
but two (2) untruthful statements, and not mere inaccuracies
and circumstances as would excite belief in a reasonable mind,
when they made it appear in the psychiatry report"36that a)
acting on the facts within the knowledge of the prosecutor, that
Larry's consent was obtained or at the very least that the latter
the person charged was guilty of the crime for which he was
was informed of the intended vasectomy; and b) that Lourdes
prosecuted.43 The term does not mean "actual and positive
Aguirre was likewise interviewed and evaluated. Paradoxically,
cause" nor does it import absolute certainty. 44 It is merely based
however, petitioner Gloria Aguirre does not in any way state that
on opinion and reasonable belief;45 that is, the belief that the act
she, instead of respondent Pedro Aguirre, has guardianship over
or omission complained of constitutes the offense charged. A
the person of Larry. She only insists that respondents should
finding of probable cause merely binds over the suspect to stand
have obtained Larry's consent prior to the conduct of the bilateral
trial. It is not a pronouncement of guilt.46
vasectomy.

The executive department of the government is accountable for


In contrast, the Office of the Solicitor General (OSG), for public
the prosecution of crimes, its principal obligation being the
respondent DOJ, argues that "the conduct of preliminary
faithful execution of the laws of the land. A necessary component
investigation to determine the existence of probable cause for
of the power to execute the laws is the right to prosecute their
the purpose of filing (an) information is the function of the public
violators,47 the responsibility of which is thrust upon the DOJ.
prosecutor."37 More importantly, "the element[s] of castration or
Hence, the determination of whether or not probable cause
mutilation of an organ necessary for generation is completely
exists to warrant the prosecution in court of an accused is
absent as he was not deprived of any organ necessary for
consigned and entrusted to the DOJ. And by the nature of his
reproduction, much less the destruction of such organ."38
office, a public prosecutor is under no compulsion to file a
53

particular criminal information where he is not convinced that he We agree. Grave abuse of discretion amounting to lack or
has evidence to prop up the averments thereof, or that the excess of jurisdiction on the part of the DOJ and the Assistant
evidence at hand points to a different conclusion. City Prosecutor was not shown in the present case.

Put simply, public prosecutors under the DOJ have a wide range In the present petition, respondents Pedro Aguirre, Olondriz, Dr.
of discretion, the discretion of whether, what and whom to Agatep and Dr. Pascual are charged with violating Articles 172
charge, the exercise of which depends on a smorgasbord of and 262 of the Revised Penal Code, in relation to Republic Act
factors which are best appreciated by (public) prosecutors.48 And No. 7610. Article 172, paragraph 2 of the Revised Penal Code,
this Court has consistently adhered to the policy of non- defines the crime of falsification of a private document, viz –
interference in the conduct of preliminary investigations, and to
leave to the investigating prosecutor sufficient latitude of Art. 172. Falsification by private individuals and use of
discretion in the determination of what constitutes sufficient falsified documents. – The penalty of prision correccional in its
evidence as will establish probable cause for the filing of an medium and maximum periods and a fine of not more than 5,000
information against the supposed offender.49 pesos shall be imposed upon:

But this is not to discount the possibility of the commission of xxxx


abuses on the part of the prosecutor. It is entirely possible that
the investigating prosecutor may erroneously exercise the 2. Any person who, to the damage of a third party, or with the
discretion lodged in him by law. This, however, does not render intent to cause such damage, shall in any private document
his act amenable to correction and annulment by the commit any of the acts of falsification enumerated in the next
extraordinary remedy of certiorari, absent any showing of grave preceding article.
abuse of discretion amounting to excess of jurisdiction.50

Petitioner Gloria Aguirre charges respondents with falsification of


Prescinding from the above, the court's duty in an appropriate a private document for conspiring with one another in keeping
case, therefore, is confined to a determination of whether the Larry "in the dark about the foregoing (vasectomy) as the same
assailed executive determination of probable cause was done was concealed from him by the respondents x x x," 53 as well as
without or in excess of jurisdiction resulting from a grave abuse for falsely concluding and diagnosing Lourdes Aguirre to be
of discretion. For courts of law to grant the extraordinary writ suffering from Bipolar Mood Disorder.
of certiorari, so as to justify the reversal of the finding of whether
or not there exists probable cause to file an information, the one
A scrutiny, however, of Article 171 of the Revised Penal Code
seeking the writ must be able to establish that the investigating
which defines the acts constitutive of falsification, that is –
prosecutor exercised his power in an arbitrary and despotic
manner by reason of passion or personal hostility, and it must be
patent and gross as would amount to an evasion or to a Art. 171. x x x shall falsify a document by committing any of the
unilateral refusal to perform the duty enjoined or to act in following acts:
contemplation of law. Grave abuse of discretion is not
enough.51 Excess of jurisdiction signifies that he had jurisdiction 1. Counterfeiting or imitating any handwriting, signature, or
over the case but has transcended the same or acted without rubric;
authority.52
2. Causing it to appear that persons have participated in any act
Applying the foregoing disquisition to the present petition, the or proceeding when they did not in fact so participate;
reasons of the Assistant City Prosecutor in dismissing the
criminal complaints for falsification and mutilation, as affirmed by 3. Attributing to persons who have participated in an act or
the DOJ, is determinative of whether or not he committed grave proceeding statements other than those in fact made by them;
abuse of discretion amounting to lack or excess of jurisdiction.
4. Making untruthful statements in a narration of facts;
In ruling the way he did – that no probable cause for falsification
and mutilation exists - the Assistant City Prosecutor deliberated 5. Altering true dates;
on the factual and legal milieu of the case. He found that there
was no sufficient evidence to establish a prima facie case for the
6. Making any alteration or intercalation in a genuine document
crimes complained of as defined and punished under Articles
which changes its meaning;
172, paragraph 2, and 262 of the Revised Penal Code in relation
to Republic Act No. 7610, respectively. Concerning the crime of
7. Issuing in an authenticated form a document purporting to be
falsification of a private document, the Assistant City Prosecutor
a copy of an original document when no such original exists, or
reasoned that the circumstances attendant to the case did not
including in such copy a statement contrary to, or different from,
amount to the crime complained of, that is, the lack of consent
that of the genuine original; or
by Larry Aguirre before he was vasectomized; or the fact that the
latter was not consulted. The lack of the two preceding attendant
facts do not in any way amount to falsification, absent the 8. Intercalating any instrument or note relative to the issuance
contention that it was made to appear in the assailed report that thereof in a protocol, registry, or official book.
said consent was obtained. That would have been an untruthful
statement. Neither does the fact that the Psychiatric Report state vis-à-vis the much criticized Psychiatric Report, shows that the
that Lourdes Aguirre has Bipolar Mood Disorder by the same acts complained of do not in any manner, by whatever stretch of
token amount to falsification because said report does not put the imagination, fall under any of the eight (8) enumerated acts
forward that such finding arose after an examination of the constituting the offense of falsification.
concerned patient. Apropos the charge of mutilation, he
reasoned that though the vasectomy rendered Larry unable to In order to properly address the issue presented by petitioner
procreate, it was not the permanent damage contemplated under Gloria Aguirre, it is necessary that we discuss the elements of
the pertinent provision of the penal code. the crime of falsification of private document under the Revised
54

Penal Code, a crime which all the respondents have been Any other intentional mutilation shall be punished by prision
accused of perpetrating. The elements of said crime under mayor in its medium and maximum periods.
paragraph 2 of Article 172 of our penal code are as follows: 1)
that the offender committed any acts of falsification, except those A straightforward scrutiny of the above provision shows that the
in par. 7, enumerated in Article 171; 2) that the falsification was elements55 of mutilation under the first paragraph of Art. 262 of
committed in any private document; and 3) that the falsification the Revised Penal Code to be 1) that there be a castration, that
caused damage to a third party or at least the falsification was is, mutilation of organs necessary for generation; and 2) that the
committed with intent to cause such damage. Under Article 171, mutilation is caused purposely and deliberately, that is, to
paragraph 2, a person may commit falsification of a private deprive the offended party of some essential organ for
document by causing it to appear in a document that a person or reproduction. According to the public prosecutor, the facts
persons participated in an act or proceeding, when such person alleged did not amount to the crime of mutilation as defined and
or persons did not in fact so participate in the act or proceeding. penalized above, i.e., "[t]he vasectomy operation did not in any
On the other hand, falsification under par. 3 of the same article is way deprived (sic) Larry of his reproductive organ, which is still
perpetrated by a person or persons who, participating in an act very much part of his physical self." Petitioner Gloria Aguirre,
or proceeding, made statements in that act or proceeding and however, would want this Court to make a ruling that bilateral
the offender, in making a document, attributed to such person or vasectomy constitutes the crime of mutilation.
persons statements other than those in fact made by such
person or persons. And the crime defined under paragraph 4 This we cannot do, for such an interpretation would be contrary
thereof is committed when 1) the offender makes in a document to the intentions of the framers of our penal code.
statements in a narration of facts; 2) he has a legal obligation to
disclose the truth of the facts narrated by him; 3) the facts
A fitting riposte to the issue at hand lies in United States v.
narrated by the offender are absolutely false; and 4) the
Esparcia,56 in which this Court had the occasion to shed light on
perversion of truth in the narration of facts was made with the
the implication of the term mutilation. Therein we said that:
wrongful intent of injuring a third person.

The sole point which it is desirable to discuss is whether or not


Applying the above-stated elements of the crime to the case at
the crime committed is that defined and penalized by article 414
bar, in order that respondent Dr. Pascual, and the rest acting in
of the Penal Code. The English translation of this article reads:
conspiracy with her, to have committed the crime of falsification
"Any person who shall intentionally castrate another shall suffer
under par. 3 and 4 of Article 171 of the Revised Penal Code, it is
a penalty ranging from reclusion temporal to reclusion perpetua."
essential that that there be prima facie evidence to show that
The Spanish text, which should govern, uses the word
she had caused it to appear that Larry gave his consent to be
"castrare," inadequately translated into English as "castrate."
vasectomized or at the very least, that the proposed medical
The word "capar," which is synonymous of "castrar," is defined in
procedure was explained to Larry. But in the assailed report, no
the Royal Academic Dictionary as the destruction of the organs
such thing was done. Lest it be forgotten, the reason for having
of generation or conception. Clearly it is the intention of the law
Larry psychiatrically evaluated was precisely to ascertain
to punish any person who shall intentionally deprived another of
whether or not he can validly consent with impunity to the
any organ necessary for reproduction. An applicable construction
proposed vasectomy, and not to obtain his consent to it or to
is that of Viada in the following language:
oblige respondent Dr. Pascual to explain to him what the import
of the medical procedure was. Further, that Larry's consent to be
vasectomized was not obtained by the psychiatrist was of no "At the head of these crimes, according to their order of gravity,
moment, because nowhere is it stated in said report that such is the mutilation known by the name of 'castration' which consists
assent was obtained. At any rate, petitioner Gloria Aguirre of the amputation of whatever organ is necessary for generation.
contradicts her very own allegations when she persists in the The law could not fail to punish with the utmost severity such a
contention that Larry has the mental age of a child; hence, he crime, which, although not destroying life, deprives a person of
was legally incapable of validly consenting to the procedure. the means to transmit it. But bear in mind that according to this
article in order for 'castration' to exist, it is indispensable that the
'castration' be made purposely. The law does not look only to the
In the matter of the supposed incorrect diagnosis of Lourdes
result but also to the intention of the act. Consequently, if by
Aguirre, with regard to paragraph 2 of Article 171 of the Revised
reason of an injury or attack, a person is deprived of the organs
Penal Code, we quote with approval the succinct statements of
of generation, the act, although voluntary, not being intentional to
the Assistant City Prosecutor:
that end, it would not come under the provisions of this article,
but under No. 2 of article 431." (Viada, Codigo Penal, vol. 3, p.
[T]he fact that Dra. Pascual cited finding, which is not of her own 70. See to same effect, 4 Groizard, Codigo Penal, p. 525.)
personal knowledge in her report does not mean that she
committed falsification in the process. Her sources may be
Thus, the question is, does vasectomy deprive a man, totally or
wrong and may affect the veracity of her report, but for as long
partially, of some essential organ of reproduction? We answer in
as she has not alleged therein that she personally diagnosed
the negative.
Lourdes Aguirre, which allegation would not then be true, she
cannot be charged of falsification. Therefore, it goes without
saying that if the author of the report is not guilty, then with more In the male sterilization procedure of vasectomy, the tubular
reason the other respondents are not liable.54 passage, called the vas deferens, through which the sperm
(cells) are transported from the testicle to the urethra where they
combine with the seminal fluid to form the ejaculant, is divided
As to the charge of mutilation, Art. 262 of the Revised Penal
and the cut ends merely tied.57 That part, which is cut, that is, the
Code defines the crime as –
vas deferens, is merely a passageway that is part of the duct
system of the male reproductive organs. The vas deferens is not
Art. 262. Mutilation. – The penalty of reclusion temporal to an organ,i.e., a highly organized unit of structure, having a
reclusion perpetua shall be imposed upon any person who shall defined function in a multicellular organism and consisting of a
intentionally mutilate another by depriving him, either totally or range of tissues.58 Be that as it may, even
partially, of some essential organ for reproduction. assuming arguendo that the tubular passage can be considered
an organ, the cutting of the vas deferens does not divest or deny
55

a man of any essential organ of reproduction for the simple practices to determine and enhance the physical, mental and
reason that it does not entail the taking away of a part or portion psychological fitness of prospective regular members of the
of the male reproductive system. The cut ends, after they have Armed Forces of the Philippines and the Philippine National
been tied, are then dropped back into the incision.59 Police as approved ny the Secretary of National Defense and the
National Police Commission duly recommended by the Chief of
Though undeniably, vasectomy denies a man his power of Staff, Armed Forces of the Philippines and the Director General
reproduction, such procedure does not deprive him, "either of the Philippine National Police shall not be considered as
totally or partially, of some essential organ for reproduction." hazing for the purposes of this Act.
Notably, the ordinary usage of the term "mutilation" is the
deprivation of a limb or essential part (of the body), 60 with the Section 2. No hazing or initiation rites in any form or manner by
operative expression being "deprivation." In the same manner, a fraternity, sorority or organization shall be allowed without prior
the word "castration" is defined as the removal of the testies or written notice to the school authorities or head of organization
ovaries.61Such being the case in this present petition, the seven (7) days before the conduct of such initiation. The written
bilateral vasectomy done on Larry could not have amounted to notice shall indicate the period of the initiation activities which
the crime of mutilation as defined and punished under Article shall not exceed three (3) days, shall include the names of those
262, paragraph 1, of the Revised Penal Code. And no criminal to be subjected to such activities, and shall further contain an
culpability could be foisted on to respondent Dr. Agatep, the undertaking that no physical violence be employed by anybody
urologist who performed the procedure, much less the other during such initiation rites.
respondents. Thus, we find sufficient evidence to explain why the
Assistant City Prosecutor and the DOJ ruled the way they did. Section 3. The head of the school or organization or their
Verily, We agree with the Court of Appeals that the writ representatives must assign at least two (2) representatives of
of certiorari is unavailing; hence, should not be issued. the school or organization, as the case may be, to be present
during the initiation. It is the duty of such representative to see to
It is once more apropos to pointedly apply the Court's general it that no physical harm of any kind shall be inflicted upon a
policy of non-interference in the conduct of preliminary recruit, neophyte or applicant.
investigations. As it has been oft said, the Supreme Court cannot
order the prosecution of a person against whom the prosecutor Section 4. If the person subjected to hazing or other forms of
does not find sufficient evidence to support at least a prima initiation rites suffers any physical injury or dies as a result
facie case.62 The courts try and absolve or convict the accused thereof, the officers and members of the fraternity, sorority or
but, as a rule, have no part in the initial decision to prosecute organization who actually participated in the infliction of physical
him.63 The possible exception to this rule is where there is an harm shall be liable as principals. The person or persons who
unmistakable showing of a grave abuse of discretion amounting participated in the hazing shall suffer:
to lack or excess of jurisdiction that will justify judicial intrusion
into the precincts of the executive. But that is not the case 1. The penalty of reclusion perpetua (life imprisonment) if death,
herein. rape, sodomy or mutilation results there from.

WHEREFORE, premises considered, the instant petition 2. The penalty of reclusion temporal in its maximum period (17
is DENIED for lack of merit. The assailed 21 July years, 4 months and 1 day to 20 years) if in consequence of the
2005Decision and 5 December 2005 Resolution, both of the hazing the victim shall become insane, imbecile, impotent or
Court of Appeals in CA-G.R. SP No. 88370 are blind.
herebyAFFIRMED. Costs against petitioner Gloria Aguirre.

3. The penalty of reclusion temporal in its medium period (14


SO ORDERED. years, 8 months and one day to 17 years and 4 months) if in
consequence of the hazing the victim shall have lost the use of
HAZING speech or the power to hear or to smell, or shall have lost an
eye, a hand, a foot, an arm or a leg or shall have lost the use of
RA 8049 any such member shall have become incapacitated for the
activity or work in which he was habitually engaged.
REPUBLIC ACT No. 8049
4. The penalty of reclusion temporal in its minimum period (12
AN ACT REGULATING HAZING AND OTHER FORMS OF years and one day to 14 years and 8 months) if in consequence
INITIATION RITES IN FRATERNITIES, SORORITIES, AND of the hazing the victim shall become deformed or shall have lost
OTHER ORGANIZATIONS AND PROVIDING PENALTIES any other part of his body, or shall have lost the use thereof, or
THEREFOR shall have been ill or incapacitated for the performance on the
activity or work in which he was habitually engaged for a period
Section 1. Hazing, as used in this Act, is an initiation rite or of more than ninety (90) days.
practice as a prerequisite for admission into membership in a
fraternity, sorority or organization by placing the recruit, neophyte 5. The penalty of prison mayor in its maximum period (10 years
or applicant in some embarrassing or humiliating situations such and one day to 12 years) if in consequence of the hazing the
as forcing him to do menial, silly, foolish and other similar tasks victim shall have been ill or incapacitated for the performance on
or activities or otherwise subjecting him to physical or the activity or work in which he was habitually engaged for a
psychological suffering or injury. period of more than thirty (30) days.

The term "organization" shall include any club or the Armed 6. The penalty of prison mayor in its medium period (8 years and
Forces of the Philippines, Philippine National Police, Philippine one day to 10 years) if in consequence of the hazing the victim
Military Academy, or officer and cadet corp of the Citizen's shall have been ill or incapacitated for the performance on the
Military Training and Citizen's Army Training. The physical, activity or work in which he was habitually engaged for a period
mental and psychological testing and training procedure and
56

of ten (10) days or more, or that the injury sustained shall require Any person charged under this provision shall not be entitled to
medical assistance for the same period. the mitigating circumstance that there was no intention to commit
so grave a wrong.
7. The penalty of prison mayor in its minimum period (6 years
and one day to 8 years) if in consequence of the hazing the This section shall apply to the president, manager, director or
victim shall have been ill or incapacitated for the performance on other responsible officer of a corporation engaged in hazing as a
the activity or work in which he was habitually engaged from one requirement for employment in the manner provided herein.
(1) to nine (9) days, or that the injury sustained shall require
medical assistance for the same period. Section 5. If any provision or part of this Act is declared invalid
or unconstitutional, the other parts or provisions thereof shall
8. The penalty of prison correccional in its maximum period (4 remain valid and effective.
years, 2 months and one day to 6 years) if in consequence of the
hazing the victim sustained physical injuries which do not Section 6. All laws, orders, rules or regulations which are
prevent him from engaging in his habitual activity or work nor inconsistent with or contrary to the provisions of this Act are
require medical attendance. hereby amended or repealed accordingly.

The responsible officials of the school or of the police, military or Section 7. This Act shall take effect fifteen (15) calendar days
citizen's army training organization, may impose the appropriate after its publication in at least two (2) national newspapers of
administrative sanctions on the person or the persons charged general circulation.
under this provision even before their conviction. The maximum
penalty herein provided shall be imposed in any of the following
instances:
RAPE
(a) when the recruitment is accompanied by force, violence,
threat, intimidation or deceit on the person of the recruit who RA 8353
refuses to join;
Republic of the Philippines
(b) when the recruit, neophyte or applicant initially consents to Congress of the Philippines
join but upon learning that hazing will be committed on his Metro Manila
person, is prevented from quitting;
Tenth Congress
(c) when the recruit, neophyte or applicant having undergone
hazing is prevented from reporting the unlawful act to his parents Republic Act No. 8353 September 30, 1997
or guardians, to the proper school authorities, or to the police
authorities, through force, violence, threat or intimidation;
AN ACT EXPANDING THE DEFINITION OF THE CRIME OF
RAPE, RECLASSIFYING THE SAME AS A CRIME AGAINST
(d) when the hazing is committed outside of the school or PERSONS, AMENDING FOR THE PURPOSE ACT NO. 3815,
institution; or AS AMENDED, OTHERWISE KNOWN AS THE REVISED
PENAL CODE, AND FOR OTHER PURPOSES
(e) when the victim is below twelve (12) years of age at the time
of the hazing. Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of
the Philippines in Congress assembled::
The owner of the place where hazing is conducted shall be liable
as an accomplice, when he has actual knowledge of the hazing Section 1. Short Title. - This Act shall be known as "The Anti-
conducted therein but failed to take any action to prevent the Rape Law of 1997."
same from occurring. If the hazing is held in the home of one of
the officers or members of the fraternity, group, or organization,
Section 2. Rape as a Crime Against Persons. - The crime of
the parents shall be held liable as principals when they have
rape shall hereafter be classified as a Crime Against Persons
actual knowledge of the hazing conducted therein but failed to
under Title Eight of Act No. 3815, as amended, otherwise known
take any action to prevent the same from occurring.
as the Revised Penal Code. Accordingly, there shall be
incorporated into Title Eight of the same Code a new chapter to
The school authorities including faculty members who consent to be known as Chapter Three on Rape, to read as follows:
the hazing or who have actual knowledge thereof, but failed to
take any action to prevent the same from occurring shall be
"Chapter Three
punished as accomplices for the acts of hazing committed by the
"Rape
perpetrators.

"Article 266-A. Rape: When And How Committed. -


The officers, former officers, or alumni of the organization, group,
Rape is committed:
fraternity or sorority who actually planned the hazing although
not present when the acts constituting the hazing were
"1) By a man who shall have carnal knowledge of a
committed shall be liable as principals. A fraternity or sorority's
woman under any of the following circumstances:
adviser who is present when the acts constituting the hazing
were committed and failed to take action to prevent the same
from occurring shall be liable as principal. "a) Through force, threat, or intimidation;

The presence of any person during the hazing is prima facie "b) When the offended party is deprived of
evidence of participation therein as principal unless he prevented reason or otherwise unconscious;
the commission of the acts punishable herein.
57

"c) By means of fraudulent machination or agency or penal institution, when the offender took
grave abuse of authority; and advantage of his position to facilitate the commission of
the crime;
"d) When the offended party is under twelve
(12) years of age or is demented, even though "8) When by reason or on the occasion of the rape, the
none of the circumstances mentioned above victim has suffered permanent physical mutilation or
be present. disability;

"2) By any person who, under any of the circumstances "9) When the offender knew of the pregnancy of the
mentioned in paragraph 1 hereof, shall commit an act of offended party at the time of the commission of the
sexual assault by inserting his penis into another crime; and
person's mouth or anal orifice, or any instrument or
object, into the genital or anal orifice of another person. "10) When the offender knew of the mental disability,
emotional disorder and/or physical handicap of the
"Article 266-B. Penalty. - Rape under paragraph 1 of offended party at the time of the commission of the
the next preceding article shall be punished by crime.
reclusion perpetua.
"Rape under paragraph 2 of the next preceding article
"Whenever the rape is committed with the use of a shall be punished by prision mayor.
deadly weapon or by two or more persons, the penalty
shall be reclusion perpetua to death. "Whenever the rape is committed with the use of a
deadly weapon or by two or more persons, the penalty
"When by reason or on the occasion of the rape, the shall be prision mayor to reclusion temporal.
victim has become insane, the penalty shall become
reclusion perpetua to death. "When by reason or on the occasion of the rape, the
victim has become insane, the penalty shall be
"When the rape is attempted and a homicide is reclusion temporal.
committed by reason or on the occasion thereof, the
penalty shall be reclusion perpetua to death. "When the rape is attempted and a homicide is
committed by reason or on the occasion thereof, the
"When by reason or on the occasion ofthe rape, penalty shall be reclusion temporal to reclusion
homicide is committed, the penalty shall be death. perpetua.

"The death penalty shall also be imposed if the crime of "When by reason or on the occasion ofthe rape,
rape is committed with any of the following homicide is committed, the penalty shall be reclusion
aggravating/qualifying circumstances: perpetua.

"l) When the victim is under eighteen (18) years of age "Reclusion temporal shall be imposed if the rape is
and the offender is a parent, ascendant, step-parent, committed with any of the ten aggravating/ qualifying
guardian, relative by consanguinity or affinity within the circumstances mentioned in this article.
third civil degree, or the common-law spouse of the
parent of the victim; "Article 266-C. Effect of Pardon. - The subsequent valid
marriage between the offended party shall extinguish
"2) When the victim is under the custody of the police or the criminal action or the penalty imposed.
military authorities or any law enforcement or penal
institution; "In case it is the legal husband who is the offender, the
subsequent forgiveness by the wife as the offended
"3) When the rape is committed in full view of the party shall extinguish the criminal action or the penalty:
spouse, parent, any of the children or other relatives Provided, That the crime shall not be extinguished or
within the third civil degree of consanguinity; the penalty shall not be abated if the marriage is
void ab initio.
"4) When the victim is a religious engaged in legitimate
religious vocation or calling and is personally known to "Article 266-D. Presumptions. - Any physical overt act
be such by the offender before or at the time of the manifesting resistance against the act of rape in any
commission of the crime; degree from the offended party, or where the offended
party is so situated as to render her/him incapable of
"5) When the victim is a child below seven (7) years old; giving valid consent, may be accepted as evidence in
the prosecution of the acts punished under Article 266-
"6) When the offender knows that he is afflicted with the A."
Human Immuno-Deficiency Virus (HIV)/Acquired
Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS) or any other Section 3. Separability Clause. - If any part, Sec., or provision
sexually transmissible disease and the virus or disease of this Act is declared invalid or unconstitutional, the other parts
is transmitted to the victim; thereof not affected thereby shall remain valid.

"7) When committed by any member of the Armed Section 4. Repealing Clause. - Article 336 of Act No. 3815, as
Forces of the Philippines or para-military units thereof amended, and all laws, acts, presidential decrees, executive
or the Philippine National Police or any law enforcement orders, administrative orders, rules and regulations inconsistent
58

with or contrary to the provisions of this Act are deemed Dismiss. On August 5, 1985, the trial court rendered its decision,
amended, modified or repealed accordingly. the dispositive portion of which reads (pp. 59-60, Rollo):

Section 5. Effectivity. - This Act shall take effect fifteen (15) WHEREFORE. the Court being morally certain of the guilt of
days after completion of its publication in two (2) newspapers of accused CEILITO ORITA @ LITO, of the crime of Frustrated
general circulation. Rape (Art. 335, RPC), beyond reasonable doubt, with the
aggravating circumstances of dwelling and nightime (sic) with no
Approved: September 30, 1997. mitigating circumstance to offset the same, and considering the
provisions of the Indeterminate Sentence Law, imposes on
accused an imprisonment of TEN (10) YEARS and ONE (1)
DAY, PRISION MAYOR, as minimum to TWELVE (12)
YEARSPRISION MAYOR, maximum; to indemnify CRISTINA S.
ABAYAN, the amount of Four Thousand (P4,000.00) Pesos,
without subsidiary imprisonment in case of insolvency, and to
pay costs.

SO ORDERED.

PEOPLE v. ORITA Not satisfied with the decision, the accused appealed to the
Court of Appeals. On December 29, 1988, the Court of Appeals
Republic of the Philippines rendered its decision, the dispositive portion of which reads (p.
SUPREME COURT 102, Rollo):
Manila
WHEREFORE, the trial court's judgment is hereby MODIFIED,
FIRST DIVISION and the appellant found guilty of the crime of rape, and
consequently, sentenced to suffer imprisonment of reclusion
G.R. No. 88724 April 3, 1990 perpetua and to indemnify the victim in the amount of
P30,000.00.
THE PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, plaintiff-appellee,
vs. SO ORDERED.
CEILITO ORITA alias "Lito," defendant-appellant.
On January 11, 1989, the Court of Appeals issued a resolution
The Office of the Solicitor General for plaintiff-appellee. setting aside its December 29, 1988 decision and forwarded the
case to this Court, considering the provision of Section 9,
paragraph 3 of Batas Pambansa Blg. 129 in conjunction with
C. Manalo for defendant-appellant.
Section 17, paragraph 3, subparagraph 1 of the Judiciary Act of
1948.

The antecedent facts as summarized in the People's brief are as


MEDIALDEA, J.: follows (pp. 71-75, Rollo):

The accused, Ceilito Orita alias Lito, was charged with the crime Complainant Cristina S. Abayan was a 19-year old freshman
of rape in Criminal Case No. 83-031-B before the Regional Trial student at the St. Joseph's College at Borongan, Eastern Samar.
Court, Branch II, Borongan, Eastern Samar. The information filed Appellant was a Philippine Constabulary (PC) soldier.
in the said case reads as follows (p. 47, Rollo):

In the early morning of March 20, 1983, complainant arrived at


The undersigned Second Assistant Provincial Fiscal upon prior her boarding house. Her classmates had just brought her home
complaint under oath by the offended party, accuses CEILITO from a party (p. 44, tsn, May 23, 1984). Shortly after her
ORITA alias LITO of the crime of Rape committed as follows: classmates had left, she knocked at the door of her boarding
house (p. 5, ibid). All of a sudden, somebody held her and poked
That on March 20, 1983, at about 1:30 o'clock in the morning a knife to her neck. She then recognized appellant who was a
inside a boarding house at Victoria St., Poblacion, Borongan, frequent visitor of another boarder (pp. 8-9, ibid).
Eastern Samar, Philippines, and within the jurisdiction of this
Honorable Court, above named accused with lewd designs and She pleaded with him to release her, but he ordered her to go
by the use of a Batangas knife he conveniently provided himself upstairs with him. Since the door which led to the first floor was
for the purpose and with threats and intimidation, did, then and locked from the inside, appellant forced complainant to use the
there wilfully, unlawfully and feloniously lay with and succeeded back door leading to the second floor (p. 77, ibid). With his left
in having sexual intercourse with Cristina S. Abayan against her arm wrapped around her neck and his right hand poking a
will and without her consent. "balisong" to her neck, appellant dragged complainant up the
stairs (p. 14, ibid). When they reached the second floor, he
CONTRARY TO LAW. commanded her to look for a room. With the Batangas knife still
poked to her neck, they entered complainant's room.
Upon being arraigned, the accused entered the plea of not guilty
to the offense charged. After the witnesses for the People Upon entering the room, appellant pushed complainant who hit
testified and the exhibits were formally offered and admitted, the her head on the wall. With one hand holding the knife, appellant
prosecution rested its case. Thereafter, the defense opted not to undressed himself. He then ordered complainant to take off her
present any exculpatory evidence and instead filed a Motion to clothes. Scared, she took off her T-shirt. Then he pulled off her
bra, pants and panty (p. 20, ibid).
59

He ordered her to lie down on the floor and then mounted her. 2) The trial court erred in declaring that the crime of frustrated
He made her hold his penis and insert it in her vagina. She rape was committed by the accused.
followed his order as he continued to poke the knife to her. At
said position, however, appellant could not fully penetrate her. The accused assails the testimonies of the victim and Pat.
Only a portion of his penis entered her as she kept on moving (p. Donceras because they "show remarkable and vital
23, ibid). inconsistencies and its incredibility amounting to fabrication and
therefore casted doubt to its candor, truth and validity." (p.
Appellant then lay down on his back and commanded her to 33, Rollo)
mount him. In this position, only a small part again of his penis
was inserted into her vagina. At this stage, appellant had both A close scrutiny of the alleged inconsistencies revealed that they
his hands flat on the floor. Complainant thought of escaping (p. refer to trivial inconsistencies which are not sufficient to blur or
20, ibid). cast doubt on the witnesses' straightforward attestations. Far
from being badges of fabrication, the inconsistencies in their
She dashed out to the next room and locked herself in. Appellant testimonies may in fact be justifiably considered as
pursued her and climbed the partition. When she saw him inside manifestations of truthfulness on material points. These little
the room, she ran to another room. Appellant again chased her. deviations also confirm that the witnesses had not been
She fled to another room and jumped out through a window (p. rehearsed. The most candid witnesses may make mistakes
27, ibid). sometimes but such honest lapses do not necessarily impair
their intrinsic credibility (People v. Cabato, G.R. No. L-37400,
Still naked, she darted to the municipal building, which was April 15, 1988, 160 SCRA 98). Rather than discredit the
about eighteen meters in front of the boarding house, and testimonies of the prosecution witnesses, discrepancies on
knocked on the door. When there was no answer, she ran minor details must be viewed as adding credence and veracity to
around the building and knocked on the back door. When the such spontaneous testimonies (Aportadera et al. v. Court of
policemen who were inside the building opened the door, they Appeals, et al., G.R. No. L-41358, March 16, 1988, 158 SCRA
found complainant naked sitting on the stairs crying. Pat. 695). As a matter of fact, complete uniformity in details would be
Donceras, the first policeman to see her, took off his jacket and a strong indication of untruthfulness and lack of spontaneity
wrapped it around her. When they discovered what happened, (People v. Bazar, G.R. No. L-41829, June 27, 1988, 162 SCRA
Pat. Donceras and two other policemen rushed to the boarding 609). However, one of the alleged inconsistencies deserves a
house. They heard a sound at the second floor and saw little discussion which is, the testimony of the victim that the
somebody running away. Due to darkness, they failed to accused asked her to hold and guide his penis in order to have
apprehend appellant. carnal knowledge of her. According to the accused, this is
strange because "this is the only case where an aggressor's
Meanwhile, the policemen brought complainant to the Eastern advances is being helped-out by the victim in order that there will
Samar Provincial Hospital where she was physically examined. be a consumation of the act." (p. 34, Rollo). The allegation would
have been meritorious had the testimony of the victim ended
there. The victim testified further that the accused was holding a
Dr. Ma. Luisa Abude, the resident physician who examined
Batangas knife during the aggression. This is a material part of
complainant, issued a Medical Certificate (Exhibit "A") which
the victim's testimony which the accused conveniently deleted.
states:

We find no cogent reason to depart from the well-settled rule that


Physical Examination — Patient is fairly built, came in with loose
the findings of fact of the trial court on the credibility of witnesses
clothing with no under-clothes; appears in state of shock, per
should be accorded the highest respect because it has the
unambulatory.
advantage of observing the demeanor of witnesses and can
discern if a witness is telling the truth (People v. Samson, G.R.
PE Findings — Pertinent Findings only. No. 55520, August 25, 1989). We quote with favor the trial
court's finding regarding the testimony of the victim (p 56, Rollo):
Neck- — Circumscribed hematoma at Ant. neck.
As correctly pointed out in the memorandum for the People,
Breast — Well developed, conical in shape with prominent there is not much to be desired as to the sincerity of the offended
nipples; linear abrasions below (L) breast. party in her testimony before the court. Her answer to every
question profounded (sic), under all circumstances, are plain and
Back — Multiple pinpoint marks. straightforward. To the Court she was a picture of supplication
hungry and thirsty for the immediate vindication of the affront to
Extremities — Abrasions at (R) and (L) knees. her honor. It is inculcated into the mind of the Court that the
accused had wronged her; had traversed illegally her honor.
Vulva — No visible abrasions or marks at the perineal area or
over the vulva,errythematous (sic) areas noted surrounding When a woman testifies that she has been raped, she says in
vaginal orifice, tender, hymen intact; no laceration fresh and old effect all that is necessary to show that rape was committed
noted; examining finger can barely enter and with difficulty; provided her testimony is clear and free from contradiction and
vaginal canal tight; no discharges noted. her sincerity and candor, free from suspicion (People v Alfonso,
G.R. No. 72573, August 31, 1987, 153 SCRA 487; People v.
Alcid, G.R. Nos. 66387-88, February 28, 1985, 135 SCRA 280;
As aforementioned, the trial court convicted the accused of
People v. Soterol G.R. No. 53498, December 16, 1985, 140
frustrated rape.
SCRA 400). The victim in this case did not only state that she
was raped but she testified convincingly on how the rape was
In this appeal, the accused assigns the following errors:
committed. The victim's testimony from the time she knocked on
the door of the municipal building up to the time she was brought
1) The trial court erred in disregarding the substantial to the hospital was corroborated by Pat. Donceras. Interpreting
inconsistencies in the testimonies of the witnesses; and the findings as indicated in the medical certificate, Dr. Reinerio
60

Zamora (who was presented in view of the unavailability of Dr. proper. The trial court was of the belief that there is no
Abude) declared that the abrasions in the left and right knees, conclusive evidence of penetration of the genital organ of the
linear abrasions below the left breast, multiple pinpoint marks, victim and thus convicted the accused of frustrated rape only.
circumscribed hematoma at the anterior neck, erythematous
area surrounding the vaginal orifice and tender vulva, are The accused contends that there is no crime of frustrated rape.
conclusive proof of struggle against force and violence exerted The Solicitor General shares the same view.
on the victim (pp. 52-53, Rollo). The trial court even inspected
the boarding house and was fully satisfied that the narration of Article 335 of the Revised Penal Code defines and enumerates
the scene of the incident and the conditions therein is true (p. the elements of the crime of rape:
54, Rollo):

Art. 335. When and how rape is committed. — Rape is


. . . The staircase leading to the first floor is in such a condition committed by having carnal knowledge of a woman under any of
safe enough to carry the weight of both accused and offended the following circumstances:
party without the slightest difficulty, even in the manner as
narrated. The partitions of every room were of strong materials,
1. By using force or intimidation;
securedly nailed, and would not give way even by hastily scaling
the same.
2. When the woman is deprived of reason or otherwise
unconscious and
A little insight into human nature is of utmost value in judging
rape complaints (People v. Torio, et al., G.R. No. L-48731,
December 21, 1983, 126 SCRA 265). Thus, the trial court added 3. When the woman is under twelve years of age, even though
(p. 55, Rollo): neither of the circumstances mentioned in the two next
preceding paragraphs shall be present.
. . . And the jump executed by the offended party from that
balcony (opening) to the ground which was correctly estimated xxx xxx xxx
to be less than eight (8) meters, will perhaps occasion no injury
to a frightened individual being pursued. Common experience Carnal knowledge is defined as the act of a man in having
will tell us that in occasion of conflagration especially occuring sexual bodily connections with a woman (Black's Law Dictionary.
(sic) in high buildings, many have been saved by jumping from Fifth Edition, p. 193).
some considerable heights without being injured. How much
more for a frightened barrio girl, like the offended party to whom On the other hand, Article 6 of the same Code provides:
honor appears to be more valuable than her life or limbs?
Besides, the exposure of her private parts when she sought Art. 6. Consummated, frustrated, and attempted felonies. —
assistance from authorities, as corroborated, is enough Consummated felonies as well as those which are frustrated and
indication that something not ordinary happened to her unless attempted, are punishable.
she is mentally deranged. Sadly, nothing was adduced to show
that she was out of her mind.
A felony is consummated when all the elements necessary for its
execution and accomplishment are present; and it is frustrated
In a similar case (People v. Sambili G.R. No. L-44408, when the offender performs all the acts of execution which would
September 30, 1982, 117 SCRA 312), We ruled that: produce the felony as a consequence but which, nevertheless,
do not produce it by reason of causes independent of the will of
What particularly imprints the badge of truth on her story is her the perpetrator.
having been rendered entirely naked by appellant and that even
in her nudity, she had to run away from the latter and managed There is an attempt when the offender commences the
to gain sanctuary in a house owned by spouses hardly known to commission of a felony directly by overt acts, and does not
her. All these acts she would not have done nor would these perform all the acts of execution which should produce the felony
facts have occurred unless she was sexually assaulted in the by reason of some cause or accident other than his own
manner she narrated. spontaneous desistance.

The accused questions also the failure of the prosecution to Correlating these two provisions, there is no debate that the
present other witnesses to corroborate the allegations in the attempted and consummated stages apply to the crime of rape.
complaint and the non-presentation of the medico-legal officer Our concern now is whether or not the frustrated stage applies to
who actually examined the victim. Suffice it to say that it is up to the crime of rape.
the prosecution to determine who should be presented as
witnesses on the basis of its own assessment of their necessity
The requisites of a frustrated felony are: (1) that the offender has
(Tugbang v. Court of Appeals, et al., G.R. No. 56679, June 29,
performed all the acts of execution which would produce the
1989; People v. Somera, G.R. No. 65589, May 31, 1989). As for
felony and (2) that the felony is not produced due to causes
the non-presentation of the medico-legal officer who actually
independent of the perpetrator's will. In the leading case
examined the victim, the trial court stated that it was by
of United States v. Eduave, 36 Phil. 209, 212, Justice Moreland
agreement of the parties that another physician testified
set a distinction between attempted and frustrated felonies which
inasmuch as the medico-legal officer was no longer available.
is readily understood even by law students:
The accused did not bother to contradict this statement.

. . . A crime cannot be held to be attempted unless the offender,


Summing up, the arguments raised by the accused as regards
after beginning the commission of the crime by overt acts, is
the first assignment of error fall flat on its face. Some were not
prevented, against his will, by some outside cause from
even substantiated and do not, therefore, merit consideration.
performing all of the acts which should produce the crime. In
We are convinced that the accused is guilty of rape. However,
other words, to be an attempted crime the purpose of the
We believe the subject matter that really calls for discussion, is
offender must be thwarted by a foreign force or agency which
whether or not the accused's conviction for frustrated rape is
61

intervenes and compels him to stop prior to the moment when he there was penetration or not. It is true, and the Court is not
has performed all of the acts which should produce the crime as oblivious, that conviction for rape could proceed from the
a consequence, which acts it is his intention to perform. If he has uncorroborated testimony of the offended party and that a
performed all of the acts which should result in the medical certificate is not necessary (People v. Royeras People v.
consummation of the crime and voluntarily desists from Orteza, 6 SCRA 109, 113). But the citations the people relied
proceeding further, it can not be an attempt. The essential upon cannot be applicable to the instant case. The testimony of
element which distinguishes attempted from frustrated felony is the offended party is at variance with the medical certificate. As
that, in the latter, there is no intervention of a foreign or such, a very disturbing doubt has surfaced in the mind of the
extraneous cause or agency between the beginning of the court. It should be stressed that in cases of rape where there is a
commission of the crime and the moment when all of the acts positive testimony and a medical certificate, both should in all
have been performed which should result in the consummated respect, compliment each other, for otherwise to rely on the
crime; while in the former there is such intervention and the testimony alone in utter disregard of the manifest variance in the
offender does not arrive at the point of performing all of the acts medical certificate, would be productive of mischievous results.
which should produce the crime. He is stopped short of that point
by some cause apart from his voluntary desistance. The alleged variance between the testimony of the victim and
the medical certificate does not exist. On the contrary, it is stated
Clearly, in the crime of rape, from the moment the offender has in the medical certificate that the vulva was erythematous (which
carnal knowledge of his victim he actually attains his purpose means marked by abnormal redness of the skin due to capillary
and, from that moment also all the essential elements of the congestion, as in inflammation) and tender. It bears emphasis
offense have been accomplished.Nothing more is left to be done that Dr. Zamoradid not rule out penetration of the genital organ
by the offender, because he has performed the last act of the victim. He merely testified that there was uncertainty
necessary to produce the crime. Thus, the felony is whether or not there was penetration. Anent this testimony, the
consummated. In a long line of cases (People v. Oscar, 48 Phil. victim positively testified that there was penetration, even if only
527; People v. Hernandez, 49 Phil. 980; People v. Royeras, G.R. partially (pp. 302, 304, t.s.n., May 23, 1984):
No. L-31886, April 29, 1974, 56 SCRA 666; People v. Amores,
G.R. No. L-32996, August 21, 1974, 58 SCRA 505), We have set Q Was the penis inserted on your vagina?
the uniform rule that for the consummation of rape, perfect
penetration is not essential. Any penetration of the female organ A It entered but only a portion of it.
by the male organ is sufficient. Entry of the labia or lips of the
female organ, without rupture of the hymen or laceration of the
xxx xxx xxx
vagina is sufficient to warrant conviction. Necessarily, rape is
attempted if there is no penetration of the female organ (People
v. Tayaba, 62 Phil. 559 People v. Rabadan et al., 53 Phil. 694; Q What do you mean when you said comply, or what act do you
United States v. Garcia: 9 Phil. 434) because not all acts of referred (sic) to, when you said comply?
execution was performed. The offender merely commenced the
commission of a felony directly by overt acts. Taking into account A I inserted his penis into my vagina.
the nature, elements and manner of execution of the crime of
rape and jurisprudence on the matter, it is hardly conceivable Q And was it inserted?
how the frustrated stage in rape can ever be committed.
A Yes only a little.
Of course, We are aware of our earlier pronouncement in the
case of People v. Eriña 50 Phil. 998 [1927] where We found the The fact is that in a prosecution for rape, the accused may be
offender guilty of frustrated rape there being no conclusive convicted even on the sole basis of the victim's testimony if
evidence of penetration of the genital organ of the offended credible (People v. Tabago, G.R. No. 69778, November 8, 1988,
party. However, it appears that this is a "stray" decision 167 SCRA 65; People v. Aragona, G.R. No. L-43752, September
inasmuch as it has not been reiterated in Our subsequent 19, 1985, 138 SCRA 569; People v. Taduyo, G.R. Nos. L-37928-
decisions. Likewise, We are aware of Article 335 of the Revised 29, September 29, 1987, 154 SCRA 349). Moreover, Dr.
Penal Code, as amended by Republic Act No. 2632 (dated Zamora's testimony is merely corroborative and is not an
September 12, 1960) and Republic Act No. 4111 (dated March indispensable element in the prosecution of this case (People v.
29, 1965) which provides, in its penultimate paragraph, for the Alfonso, supra).
penalty of death when the rape is attempted orfrustrated and a
homicide is committed by reason or on the occasion thereof. We
Although the second assignment of error is meritorious, it will not
are of the opinion that this particular provision on frustrated rape
tilt the scale in favor of the accused because after a thorough
is a dead provision. The Eriña case, supra, might have prompted
review of the records, We find the evidence sufficient to prove
the law-making body to include the crime of frustrated rape in the
his guilt beyond reasonable doubt of the crime of consummated
amendments introduced by said laws.
rape.

In concluding that there is no conclusive evidence of penetration


Article 335, paragraph 3, of the Revised Penal Code provides
of the genital organ of the victim, the trial court relied on the
that whenever the crime of rape is committed with the use of a
testimony of Dr. Zamora when he "categorically declared that the
deadly weapon, the penalty shall be reclusion perpetua to death.
findings in the vulva does not give a concrete disclosure of
The trial court appreciated the aggravating circumstances of
penetration. As a matter of fact, he tossed back to the offended
dwelling and nighttime. Thus, the proper imposable penalty is
party the answer as to whether or not there actually was
death. In view, however, of Article 111, Section 19(1) of the 1987
penetration." (p. 53, Rollo) Furthermore, the trial court stated (p.
Constitution and Our ruling in People v. Millora, et al., G.R. Nos.
57, Rollo):
L-38968-70, February 9, 1989, that the cited Constitutional
provision did not declare the abolition of the death penalty but
. . . It cannot be insensible to the findings in the medical merely prohibits the imposition of the death penalty, the Court
certificate (Exhibit "A") as interpreted by Dr. Reinerio Zamora has since February 2, 1987 not imposed the death penalty
and the equivocal declaration of the latter of uncertainty whether whenever it was called for under the Revised Penal Code but
62

instead reduced the same to reclusion perpetua (People v. Solis, defense — Ramil las Dulce, Linda Ayroso, and the accused
et al., G.R. Nos. 78732-33, February 14, 1990). Reclusion himself.
perpetua, being a single indivisible penalty under Article 335,
paragraph 3, is imposed regardless of any mitigating or At about 10 or 11 o'clock in the morning of March 7, 1984,
aggravating circumstances (in relation to Article 63, paragraph 1, Marichelle Carlos, 6 years old and a Grade I pupil at the Moises
Revised Penal Code; see People v. Arizala, G.R. No. 59713, Salvador Elementary School, Manila, was playing "takbuhan"
March 15, 1982, 112 SCRA 615; People v. Manzano, G.R. No. alone at the first level (ground floor) of the two-story apartment of
L38449, November 25, 1982, 118 SCRA 705; People v. Ramirez, the accused, Semion Mangalino, 53, married to 55-year old
G.R. No. 70744, May 31, 1985, 136 SCRA 702). Laura Gasmin, childless, a security guard by occupation, and
residing at 1597-D Honradez Street, Sampaloc, Manila. 3 At the
ACCORDINGLY, the decision of the Regional Trial Court is time of the incident, Laura was in Balayan, Batangas, having left
hereby MODIFIED. The accused Ceilito Orita is hereby found the day before the incident. The accused and Marichelle's
guilty beyond reasonable doubt of the crime of rape and parents (Tomas and Bernardine Carlos) are neighbors, their
sentenced to reclusion perpetua as well as to indemnify the respective rented apartments being almost opposite each other.
victim in the amount of P30,000.00.
During the morning of March 7, 1984, Ramil las Dulce, a 16-year
SO ORDERED. old high school student occupying the second floor of the
apartment, for free and free board, too, a grandson of the
accused (his mother, Edita Onadia who lived with him upstairs,
being an adopted daughter of the accused), and Laura's
nephew, Armando Ayroso, were allegedly playing chess 4 in the
sala of the apartment. Ramil, a witness for the defense, testified
PEOPLE v. MANGALINO that he did not hear or see the accused calling out to Marichelle
and motioning her to go inside his bedroom or "sleeping
Republic of the Philippines quarters" at one end of the sala of the ground floor, opposite the
SUPREME COURT kitchen.
Manila
Once inside the bedroom, the accused handed the girl a two
SECOND DIVISION peso bill (P2.00) 5 and told her not to tell anybody about his
calling her to his bedroom. The girl assented. 6
G.R. No. 79011 February 15, 1990
The accused then laid Marichelle down, removed her jogging
pants, and placed them beside her feet. 7 He kissed her and
PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, plaintiff-appellee,
fondled her infantile breasts. 8 He inserted his finger into the
vs.
private part of the victim, 9 and then forcibly and repeatedly
SEMION MANGALINO y LUMANOG, accused-appellant.
introduced his sexual organ into her undeveloped genitalia, but
in vain. 10
The Office of the Solicitor General for plaintiff-appellee.

Meanwhile, the victim's mother, Bernardine Carlos, 27, and a


Adriatico T. Bruno for accused-appellant.
plain housewife, was looking for her daughter, who should be
leaving for school by that time. She was informed by her sister
Agnes, who was living next door, that the adopted daughter of
the accused, Cielito, had told her that Marichelle was in their
SARMIENTO, J.: apartment. 11 Immediately, Michael, Agnes' four-year old son,
was dispatched to fetch Marichelle.
This is an appeal from the decision of the Regional Trial Court of
Manila, 1 in which the accused was convicted of statutory rape Hearing the call of Michael, the victim put on her garments, and
under Article 335, paragraph 3 of the Revised Penal Code, 2 and on the way home noticed that her jogging pants were wet. Upon
sentenced to suffer the penalty of reclusion perpetua and to pay reaching her house, Marichelle narrated to her mother what had
the offended parties the sum of P50,000.00 as moral damages. happened, saying, "Si Mang Semion nilagay ang daliri niya sa
The complaint signed by the father of the victim, Tomas Carlos y pikpik ko," and "yong titi ni Mang Semion nilagay sa pikpik ko." 12
Valente states:
At about 2:30 that same day, an enraged Bernardine submitted
xxx xxx xxx her daughter to a physical and genital examination, 13 the results
of which National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) Medico Legal
That on or about March 7, 1984, in the city of Manila, Officer Roberto V. Garcia certified as follows:
Philippines, the said accused did then and there wilfully,
unlawfully and feloniously lie with and have carnal knowledge of No evidence (or) sign of any extragenital physical injury noted on
the undersigned complainant's daughter Marichelle, a minor, 6 the body of the subject at the time of examination.
years of age, against her will and consent.
Hymen, intact and its orifice, narrow.
Contrary to Law.
Sign of recent genital trauma, present.
The following facts are fully supported by the evidence on
record, mainly the testimonies of the victim herself and her Dr. Garcia opined that the vestibular mucosa contusion could
mother, Bernardine, Dr. Roberto V. Garcia, and Staff Sergeant have been caused by a hard object like an erected penis and
Mario Oser, as well as the testimonies of the witnesses for the such bruises at such part of the girl's vagina if caused by an
erected penis would be an indication of an unsuccessful
63

penetration. He discounted the probability of an accident, like accused and the complainant — on the ground floor where the
bumping at an edge of a chair, or any blunt object, since there rape was supposedly consummated.
was no contusion of the labia. 14
The commission of the crime, submits the defense, was
The confrontation between the victim and the accused took impossible, considering that it was allegedly committed at
place when Staff Sergeant Mario Oser of the Waterfront Unit, noontime, which would have readily exposed the act of rape to
Reaction Strike Force, Philippine Constabulary Metropolitan anyone glancing in the direction of the place where the suspect
Command (P.C. Metrocom), who conducted the initial was abusing the victim.
investigation, invited the accused to the P.C. Headquarters.
There, Marichelle Identified Semion Mangalino as the man who On the second point, it is contended that the rape could not have
had abused her. been accomplished with so many persons present in the
apartment. As it was, Ramil and Armando were playing chess
The accused vehemently denied having ever abused Marichelle. near the front door of the apartment. Also, Linda Ayroso, 29,
He argued that the bruises in the complainant's vestibular married to Armando, and a housewife, was washing laundry in
mucosa may have been self-inflicted. Marichelle, who was the kitchen. Furthermore, the accused was cooking lunch also in
constantly running about, might have bumped her pelvis against the kitchen, and so could not have flitted from the kitchen to his
a chair, which explained the absence of signs of contusions in room to execute his evil design without anyone noticing his
the labia. absence.

Curiously, the young victim candidly testified that she felt no pain The defense brings to our attention the physical layout of the
when the accused was allegedly trying to insert his penis into her apartment of the accused. The place where the alleged sexual
vagina. She did not cry in pain nor shout for help when she was abuse took place was not even a room, he asserts. The
being abused. 15 apartment had neither a door nor walls, and what divided the so-
called room from the living room was a wooden folding divider
Before the Court, the appellant assigned four errors in his brief which was full of holes, "butas-butas." 17
which he claims the trial court committed, to wit:
Finally, the accused assails the lower court's slapping of
ASSIGNMENT OF ERRORS damages based on the claims of prosecution witnesses of
suffering mental anguish, moral shock, and a "besmirched
ERROR I reputation." Since he did not commit the offense attributed to
him, the award of P50,000.00 as moral damages is unwarranted.
Consequently, he prays he must be exculpated.
THE TRIAL COURT ERRED IN NOT FINDING THAT,
CONSIDERING THE PLACE, THE TIME, AND THE PRESENCE
OF SO MANY PEOPLE WITHIN THE IMMEDIATE VICINITY We deny the appeal except the amount of the award of damages
WHERE THE ALLEGED CRIME WAS COMMITTED, THE which we reduce to P20,000.00 conformably to prevailing
ACCUSED COULD NOT HAVE SEXUALLY ABUSED jurisprudence.
MARICHELLE G. CARLOS, THE COMPLAINING WITNESS
HEREIN; We rule that statutory rape had been committed beyond the
shadow of a doubt.
ERROR II
The gravamen of the offense of statutory rape as provided in
THE TRIAL COURT ERRED IN NOT FINDING THAT THE Article 335, paragraph 3 of the Revised Penal Code is the carnal
BRUISES THROUGH THE VESTIBULAR MUCOSA OF THE knowledge of a woman below 12 years of age. 18 Marichelle, a
PRIVATE PART OF MARICHELLE G. CARLOS IS THE RESULT little over 6 years of age at the time, was raped. Beyond that,
OF AN ACCIDENT, CONSIDERING THAT ON MARCH 7,1984, proof of intimidation or force used on her, or lack of it, is
SHE WAS IN THE GROUND FLOOR OF THE APARTMENT OF immaterial.
HEREIN ACCUSED PLAYING — RUNNING AROUND
"TAKBUHAN"; The findings of Dr. Roberto V. Garcia, the NBI Medico Legal
officer, who testified for the People, conclude that rape could
ERROR III have been perpetrated. To reiterate, he certified the existence of
indications of recent genital trauma.Under normal condition, the
color of the vestibular mucosa is pinkish. The doctor found the
THE TRIAL COURT ERRED IN ORDERING THE ACCUSED TO
vestibular mucosa of the victim to be dark red. 19 The forcible
PAY THE OFFENDED PARTIES, MARICHELLE G. CARLOS
attempt of an erected penis to have complete penetration
AND HER PARENTS, TOMAS CARLOS AND BERNARDINE
caused the 3 1/2-centimeter contusion prior to the hymen. The
GANLAC CARLOS, THE SUM OF P50,000.00 AS AND FOR
government doctor further discounted the probability of an
DAMAGES;
accident, such as bumping the edge of a chair, or violent contact
with a blunt object, as there was no contusion of the labia.
ERROR IV
The penile-vaginal contact without penetration was due to the
THE TRIAL COURT ERRED IN FINDING THAT THE ACCUSED one- centimeter diameter opening of Marichelle's hymen.
IS GUILTY OF THE CHARGE ALLEGED IN THE Usually, the average adult's hymen measures 2.8 to 3
INFORMATION, INSTEAD OF ACQUITTING HIM WITH COSTS centimeters in diameter, making it compatible to, or easily
DE OFFICIO. 16 penetrable by, an average-size penis. The victim being of a
tender age, the penetration could go only as deep as the
The defense vigorously argues against the probability of the rape labia. 20 In any case, the Court has consistently held that for rape
having been committed on two points: 1) The commission of the to be committed, full penetration is not required. It is enough that
crime was impossible, taking place as claimed, in broad daylight, there is proof of entrance of the male organ within the labia or
and 2) there were at least eight persons — including the
64

pudendum of the female organ. 21Indeed, even the slightest q While you were playing inside the house of Semion Mangalino
penetration is sufficient to consummate the crime of rape. he called for you?

The relationship between the offender and the victim as Witness


neighbors remains unrebutted. This relationship has an
important bearing on the medico-legal finding, because it a Yes, madam.
explains the absence of visible signs of physical injuries.22 The
close relationship of Semion Mangalino to Marichelle — as a q Why did he called (sic) for you?
nearby neighbor of the Carlos family — and the degree of
respect that Semion may have had in Marichelle's life, helps
Witness
explain why physical force was not employed. The mere size of
the accused, a robust security guard, and 163 centimeters (five
feet and four inches) in height, could have easily immobilized the a He called me and told me to go to his bedroom madam.
victim who was at that time only one hundred eight centimeters
tall and weighing 31.818 kilos (70 lbs.) Fiscal Salvania

The attempt to discredit the prosecution's version as shown by q When you were asked to go to his bedroom, did he give you
the fact that Marichelle did not cry out or struggle against her anything?
attacker deserves scant consideration. The absence of hymenal
laceration adequately explains why Marichelle did not feel any Witness
pain during the attempted sexual intercourse. Why would she
struggle, when she did not even know that her chastity was a Yes madam.
being violated? As her mother testified, it was only upon realizing
that she had been defiled did her daughter cry. From then on,
q What did he give to you?
she became "matatakutin' and "hindi na kumakain", she became
nervous and had no appetite for food — symptoms of a state of
a He gave me P2.00, madam.
anguish.

Court
The simplicity of the testimony of Marichelle convinces us that
she was telling the truth about her having been sexually abused.
q Did you accept that P2.00?
xxx xxx xxx
Witness
q (Asst. Fiscal Mercedes C. Salvania) Now, while you were
playing will you tell this Honorable court where did you go after a Yes, your Honor.
that?
Fiscal Salvania
Witness (Marichelle)
q When you were asked to go inside the higaan of Semion
a While I was playing Mang Simeon called me madam. Mangalino, did you go?

Court Witness

q Why, were you playing alone? a Yes, madam.

Witness q Now, when you went inside the higaan, what did he do to you?

a Yes, your Honor. a He inserted one of his fingers in my private part madam.

Fiscal Salvania Fiscal Salvania

q What were you playing? q You stated that you were wearing jogging pant?

Witness Witness

a I was running around "takbuhan" madam. a Yes, madam.

Court q What happened to your jogging pant?

q Were you running outside or inside the house of the accused a He first removed my jogging pant, madam.

Witness q After removing your jogging pant, did he removed (sic)anything


in his clothes?
a Inside the house of Semion Mangalino, your Honor.
a He did not removed (sic) anything in his clothes madam.
Fiscal Salvania
Court
65

q Beside the jogging pant you are (sic) wearing, were you also a He put-out his penis while he was kissing and his one fingers
wearing a panty? (sic) inserted in my private part, your Honor.

Witness q What did he do with his penis?

a Yes, your Honor. a He is inserting his penis in my private part, your Honor.

Fiscal Salvania Court

q What happen(ed) to your panty, did he remove? q Was the accused able to insert his penis into your private part?

Witness Witness

a He also removed my panty madam. a He was not able, your Honor.

Fiscal Salvania xxx xxx xxx

q What did he do with his finger? q How do you feel or did you feel pain while the accused was
trying to insert his penis into your private part?
Court
Witness
She said he inserted.
a I did not feel anything, your Honor.
q Was one of the fingers of the accused inserted in your private
part? q Did you feel pain?

Witness a I did not feel anything painful, your Honor.

a Yes, your Honor. q Did you saw (sic) the penis of Semion Mangalino?

q What did he do? a Yes, your Honor.

a He kissed me your Honor. q What was your position when Semion Mangalino was trying to
insert his penis into your private part?
q Where did he kissed (sic) you?
Witness
a In my breast your Honor.
a I was lying down, your Honor.
Fiscal Salvania
Court
q Did he remove your T-shirt?
q Who put you lay (sic) down, was it yourself or what?
Witness
Witness
a No madam.
a Semion Mangalino, your Honor.
xxx xxx xxx
q Did you not cry?
Court
a I did not cry, your Honor.
q Did Semion Mangalino removed (sic) his pant?
q Did you shout?
Witness
a I did not shout, your Honor.
a He did not removed (sic) his pant your Honor.
q Why, were there persons inside the house while Semion
xxx xxx xxx Mangalino was doing all these things to you?

q Do you know what is penis? a There were no other persons except myself and Semion
Mangalino your Honor. 23
a Yes, your Honor.
Marichelle was a Grade I pupil when she was violated. She was
q Did the accused put-out his penis while he was inserting his in Grade II when she took the witness stand. In view of her very
finger in your private part and kissing you in the breast? tender age and her little formal schooling, it is inconceivable for
Marichelle to concoct a serious charge of rape, and to narrate, in
66

unhesitating and simple terms, that she had been asked by the were doing, that the accused surreptitiously enticed Marichelle
offender to go inside the room; that she was laid down after the into his higaan, and that the short distance between the kitchen
accused had given her P2.00; that he removed her jogging pants and the "room" — a mere distance of 5 to 6 meters — is no
and panty; that the accused kissed her and caressed her obstacle to the satiation of his carnal lusting after the child.
breasts, that "Mang Semion" inserted a finger into her genital,
and later his sexual organ. At age 6, Marichelle would have been The accused claims it was impossible for him to have raped the
one of those "babes and sucklings" from whose mouths words of victim in the presence of other people, more so, in a place
praise should have been perfected, but alas, she was instead without privacy. We do not agree. Rape was in fact committed. It
compelled to relate in the presence of people, some of them is quite possible for an experienced man, like the accused, to
complete strangers, in the police precinct and in court, her tragic consummate rape in just one minute, without attracting the
story. attention of the people inside the apartment. 26 Marichelle's
complete innocence may have facilitated the perpetration of the
The heart of the matter is the violation of a child's incapacity to clime, and the divider, although "butas-butas," was sufficient to
discern evil from good. As the behavior of the victim towards the conceal the commission of the bestial act.
accused during the commission of the crime and her testimony
before police officers and in the court indicate, she had no In several instances, this Court held that rape can be committed
awareness of the wrongfulness of the action of the accused who even in places where people congregate: in parks, along the
was old enough to be her grandfather. Her willingness to lie road side, within school premises, and even inside a house
down on and accept the P2.00 given her by the accused, whom where there are other occupants. 27The apartment of the
she looked up to as an elder person, a neighbor, and a friend of accused was no exception. Lust is no respecter of time or place.
her family, indicate not naivete, but the absolute trust and
confidence of the very young in an older person. She was In fine, we hold that the trial court did not commit any reversible
incapable of reading malice or evil in his intentions. It is likely error in finding the accused-appellant guilty beyond reasonable
that it was only when she saw how distraught her mother was at doubt of the crime of statutory rape.
her telling of her story and the flurry of police and judicial activity
stirred up by her narration that her young and innocent mind was
No amount of money can soothe the pain and anguish suffered
violently exposed to the reality of the existence of evil in the
by a victim of rape and her family. Still, we cannot impose the
hearts of men. The moment of truth, dawning so violently upon
damages of P50,000.00 on the accused. As stated earlier, we
young and innocent minds is contemptible. The older persons in
reduce the amount to P20,000.00.
the community should set themselves up as models of proper
decorum and high moral purpose for young children; it is they
who should guide the young, teach them, and nurture them in WHEREFORE, the appealled decision is AFFIRMED with the
the way of the righteous. A 53-year-old man who instead MODIFICATION above indicated.
corrupts and violates the purity and dignity of a minor is morally
depraved and should be punished to the limits of the law. Costs against the accused-appellant.

It is even more difficult to conceive of Mrs. Bernardine Carlos SO ORDERED.


trumping up a charge of the rape of her daughter and subject
herself and her daughter to humiliation, to fear, and anxiety, and PEOPLE v. ERINIA
community censure that she and her daughter will have to bear
for the rest of their lives, 24 simply in consideration of P50,000.00,
Republic of the Philippines
the amount asked for in moral damages.
SUPREME COURT
Manila
The trial court's findings of facts which rely on the credibility of
witnesses are entitled to respect, if not finality. A painstaking
EN BANC
examination and review of the records of the case yield no fact
or circumstance that would have contradicted the findings of the
G.R. No. L-26298 January 20, 1927
trial court.

THE PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINE ISLANDS, plaintiff-


The alleged inconsistencies refer to minor details and do not at
appellee,
all touch upon the basic aspects of the who, the how, and the
vs.
when of the crime committed. Minor discrepancies in the
JULIAN ERINIA Y VINOLLA, defendant-appellant.
testimonies of Marichelle and her mother are but natural, and
even enhance their credibility as witnesses because these
discrepancies indicate that the responses given were honest and Hermogenes Caluag for appellant.
unrehearsed. 25 In appreciation of the testimony of the victim, Attorney-General Jaranilla for appellee.
due regard must be accorded to her tender age.
OSTRAND, J.:
The contention of the accused that he never left the kitchen is
flawed. The facility of a quick tap to his room can not be This is an appeal from a judgment of the Court of First Instance
discounted considering that kitchen where he was supposed to of Manila finding the defendant guilty of the crime of
have been cooking was only a few meters away. That the consummated rape and sentencing him to suffer seventeen
presence of Ramil and Armando who were allegedly playing years, four months and one day of reclusion temporal, with the
chess in the kitchen made the commission of the crime accessory penalties provided by law and to pay the costs.
impossible, even if were true, falls flat in the face of the game of
chess being one that requires utmost concentration; that being The victim of the crime was a child of 3 years and 11 months old
so, it is logical for both players to be concentrating on the game and the evidence is conclusive that the defendant endeavored to
when the accused lured Marichelle into the room. We hold that have carnal intercourse with her, but there may be some doubt
when Ramil, Armando, and Linda were engrossed in what they whether he succeeded in penetrating the vagina before being
67

disturbed by the timely intervention of the mother and the sister On the witness stand, six (6) year old Diana Rose Castro
of the child. The physician who examined the genital organ of the narrated how, while playing with a neighbor sometime on 4
child a few hours after the commission of the crime found a slight October 1986, she was pulled by the accused inside a bathroom,
inflammation of the exterior parts of the organ, indicating that an prevented from going out, and made to stand on the toilet bowl.
effort had been made to enter the vagina, but in testifying before Accused is a first cousin of Diana Rose's mother. Kuya Delfin, as
the court he expressed doubts as to whether the entry had been Diana Rose referred to the accused, then put up her clothes,
effected. The mother of the child testified that she found its took off her panty, made her lean on the wall and, despite her
genital organ covered with a sticky substance, but that cannot be efforts to pull away he inserted his private part into her causing
considered conclusive evidence of penetration. pain. Then she was told by the accused to go home. At home,
she refused to have her private part washed by her Auntie Alice
It has been suggested that the child was of such tender age that because it was hurting and painful. 1
penetration was impossible; that the crime of rape consequently
was impossible of consummation; and that, therefore, the Mrs. Jacinta Castro, Diana's grandmother, testified that on 6
offense committed should be treated only as abusos October 1986, in her house at No. 1692, F. Muñoz, Tramo,
deshonestos. We do not think so. It is probably true that a Pasay City, she was asked by her husband to find out why Diana
complete penetration was impossible, but such penetration is not was crying. Her testimony follows. 2
essential to the commission of the crime; it is sufficient if there is
a penetration of the labia. In the case of Kenny vs. State ([Tex. COURT:
Crim. App.], 79 S. W., 817; 65 L. R. A., 316) where the offended
party was a child of the age of 3 years and 8 months the Q Was there anything unusual that happened on Oct. 6
testimony of several physicians was to the effect that her labia of particularly in your house?
the privates of a child of that age can be entered by a man's
male organ to the hymen and the defendant was found guilty of
A On Oct. 6 I was downstairs and there was a call by my
the consummated crime rape.
husband.

There being no conclusive evidence of penetration of the genital


xxx xxx xxx
organ of the offended party, the defendant is entitled to the
benefit of the doubt and can only be found guilty of frustrated
rape, but in view of the fact that he was living in the house of the FISCAL:
parents of the child as their guest, the aggravating circumstance
of abuse of confidence existed and the penalty must therefore be xxx xxx xxx
imposed in its maximum degree.
Q Now, what was the reason why your husband called you?
The judgment appealed from is modified and the defendant-
appellant is hereby found guilty of the crime of frustrated rape A He asked me to fine out why my granddaughter does not want
and is sentenced to suffer twelve years of prision mayor, with the to eat and just keeps on crying.
accessory penalties prescribed by law, and with the costs in both
instances. So ordered. Q And what did you do wen (sic) your husband told you to see
your granddaughter?
PEOPLE v. CASTRO
A I went upstairs and found out what was wring (sic) with her
Republic of the Philippines whether she has fever.
SUPREME COURT
Manila Q And what did you find out

SECOND DIVISION A At first she said she was complaining that her private property
was painful and when I investigated I discovered that it swollen
G.R. No. 91490 May 6, 1991 (sic).

PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, plaintiff-appellee, Q Then what happened after you found out that the private
vs. property of your granddaughter was swollen?
DELFIN CASTRO y LOZADA, defendant-appellant.
A I asked her why.
The Solicitor General for plaintiff-appellee.
Q (sic). And what did your granddaughter tell you?
Eduardo I. Advincula for defendant-appellant.
A At first she told me that "nasabit sa hiyero."

Q And what did you do after that?


PADILLA, J.:p
xxx xxx xxx
This is an appeal interposed by the accused, Delfin Castro y
Lozada, from the decision* of the Regional Trial Court of Pasay A What I did was to examine her carefully her private part; I lifted
City, Branch 110, imposing upon him the penalty of reclusion her two (2) legs and I discovered that her private property was
perpetua for statutory rape defined under Art. 335, paragraph 3 reddened as swollen.
of the Revised Penal Code.
Q Did you ask her again what happened to her private property?
68

A Yes, sir, she told me that she was invited by her Kuya Delfin to Q Now this genital trauma which you said to have been suffered
the bathroom. by the subject from what could this injury or trauman (sic), what
was the cause?
Q And what else did she tell you?
A Any hard object would have produced this bruise or contusion.
A She told me that she was asked by her Kuya to stand on top of
the toilet bowl and he removed her panty and his (sic) Kuya Q Now, this is a case of rape, Doctor, would you venture to state
Delfin also removed his pants. from what object this could have been inflicted?

Q What else did she tell you? A Under the normal course of events injuries of this nature
involving this particular portion of the body of a female or woman
A She told me that his (sic) Kuya Delfin had sexual intercourse is produced by the insertion of a male organ. 4
with her.
xxx xxx xxx
COURT:
A sworn complaint for rape was filed against Delfin Castro y
Q Did you ask Diane Castro how Delfin allegedly had sexual Lozada. It charged as follows:
intercourse with her?
That on or about the 4th day of October, 1986 in Pasay City,
A Yes, Your Honor. Philippines and within the jurisdiction of tills Honorable Court, the
above named accused, Delfin Castro y Lozada, with lewd
Q What did she answer? designs and taking advantage of his moral ascendancy over the
undersigned complainant who is his niece, did then and there
wilfully, unlawfully and feloniously have sexual intercourse with
A She was standing and she was made to lean on the wall, Your
or carnal knowledge of the undersigned. 5
Honor. . .

Accused pleaded not guilty and posted bail for his provisional
Because of Diana's revelation, the grandmother brought her to
liberty.
the National Bureau of Investigation for examination on 8
October 1986. 3
Delfin's alibi begins on 3 October 1986 in 1692 Muñoz, Pasay
City, where he lives two (2) houses away from complainant's. At
Dr. Roberto Garcia, the NBI medico-legal, had this explanation:
about 12:00 P.M., Diana went to his house while he was taking a
bath. She was crying and went inside the bathroom. When
xxx xxx xxx asked by the accused why, she replied that while going down the
stairs, a dog whose two (2) hind legs were limping, chased her
A Under the single heading of "genital examination" the more and so she tripped. The accused told Diana to go out because
insignificant findings will be the contused or bruised vetibular their dog might bite her. He proceeded to dress up and saw the
(sic) meaning the area inside the genital organ of the subject victim playing outside.
person; the hymen of the subject person was noted to be bruised
or contused . . . In the morning of 4 October 1986, he woke up at about quarter
to seven, 6 left the house at 7:30 7 took a jeep plying the Pasay-
Q Now what do you mean when you say that the genital parts Taft- Luneta route, arrived in school (Adamson University) at
you mentioned were contused or bruised? 8:15 in the morning. He proceeded to see Dolores Rivera, a
godsister who worked in the treasurer's office of the university to
A The area was noted to be purplish or red darker than the ask the latter to type a term paper which was due that day. After
normal appearance of the said portion being bruised or contused submitting the term paper, he treated his godsister to lunch.
it would mean that this particular portion was subject to some Around 1:00 o'clock in the afternoon, he went home.
amount of force or it could have come in contact with a hard
object, the contract must have been done with a certain amount Mrs. Teresita Castro's testimony dovetails with her son Delfin's
of force. saying that at around 12:30 P.M. on 4 October 1986, he arrived
and ate lunch at
Q Under No. 2 of the conclusion of this report it reads—"signs of home. 8 Mother and son talked of enmity between Mrs. Jacinta
recent genital trauma, present, consistent with the alleged date Castro, Diana's grandmother and their family. This rape case
of infliction." against Delfin is a result allegedly of the envy of Diana's said
grandmother over his (Delfin's) fine scholastic performance. 9
Would you explain this?
Delfin further narrated that on or about 8 October 1986, he was
This witness meant that the appearance of the genital or prior of invited to the Pasay Police Headquarters for questioning. While
those mentioned was seen by this witness which brought about there, he was asked to undress, was blindfolded and beaten by
the trauma and that it has to be recent, meaning it could have around 7 to 10 policemen for about half an hour and made to
been sustained by the subject person in a matter of days prior to admit that he raped Diana. Since he could no longer stand the
the date of the examination. torture, he told them that he used his small finger to touch her
private part. 10 After the incident, Delfin left their house in order to
avoid trouble; occasionally he would visit his parents. 11
A Now, was the hymen of the subject lacerated?

Finding the testimony of Diana positive, clear and credible, the


A No, sir.
Regional Trial Court disregarded the alibi of the accused and
convicted him. The trial court, inter alia, stated:
69

. . . The accused's claim that he was, in the morning of October Sexual intercourse in a standing position, while perhaps
4, 1986, at Adamson University waiting for his term paper uncomfortable, is not improbable. The RTC decision explained:
engenders disbelief. By his evidence, he was enrolled at the
Adamson University for the second semester of school 1986- . . . For her account that she was made to stand on the toilet
1987 classes for which usually start in October. Term papers are bowl made it easy for the accused to do the act as she was too
usually submitted at the end of the semester, not at the small and their private parts would not align unless she was
beginning of the semester. In any event, Delfin was not shown elevated to a higher position. The suggestion of the defense
that it was physically impossible for him to be at the place of the counsel that a finger could have been used is absurd. For if it
incident on October 4, 1986 as, by his evidence, he returned to were only a finger there would have been no need to let Diana
his house after noontime, rested for a while, then left and stand on the toilet bowl.. . . 14
returned again in the afternoon. His suggestion that Diana's
genital bruises could have resulted from trippling down the stairs The Solicitor General's brief, in turn, asserts that the position
when she was chased by a limping dog is ridiculous. A dog Diana was forced to take, made it easier for appellant to
whose two hind legs are limping chasing her (where did the dog accomplish insertion of his organ than if Diana had been made
come from?) while she was going down the stairs? Granted that to lie down. 15
were possible or that actually happened, the fall would cause
abrasions, not hymenal contusions. Finally the defense's
Experience has shown that unfounded charges of rape have
insinuation that Diana's grandmother Jacinta who was pictured
frequently been proffered by women actuated by some sinister,
to be supercilious and envious was behind the filing of this case
ulterior or undisclosed motive. Convictions in such cases should
is difficult to believe, there being no concrete proof thereof.
not be sustained without clear and convincing proof of
Besides, it would be unthinkable for Jacinta to alienate her
guilt, 16 considering the gravity of the offense and the penalty it
relations with all her in-laws, the Castros, who are staying in
carries.
different houses of the same compound, by fabricating a charge
against the accused.
On the alleged sinister motive of Diana's grandmother
engendered by envy, we find this incredulous. For, what
Finally, the accused's flight from his house after the filing of the
grandmother would exact vengeance on her enemies at the
present case is not consistent with his professed innocence. He
perpetual humiliation and disrepute of her six (6) year old
did not, according to him, have any good relationship with
granddaughter?
Diana's grandmother even before October 4, 1986. So what was
he fleeing from? His answer, that he wanted to avoid trouble,
tells it all . . . Finally, the issue of credibility. Who among the contending
parties is telling the truth? The prosecution's evidence is simple
and straightforward. Appellant's alibi must fall. Claims of his
xxx xxx xxx
scholastic achievements, assuming they are relevant, were
unsubstantiated. His counsel did not even formally offer the
From the said decision sentencing him to suffer the penalty exhibits attesting to his enrollment at Adamson University where
of reclusion perpetua and indemnify the victim in the amount of he was supposed to have submitted in the morning of 4 October
P20,000.00 by way of damages, the accused appealed to this 1986 a term paper. His credibility is dubious; he was not able to
Court pointing out the following alleged errors: even identify the topic of his alleged term paper. To discredit the
victim he testified on her alleged propensity to tell lies. 17 The trial
1. there is no rape because — court, however, categorically held:

a. the hymen of the victim was not lacerated. While Diana's testimony was in some instances flawed, the flaw
was minor and only with respect to dates. She is a young girl.
b. the victim was allegedly standing while the She sat at the witness stand four times, yet she survived the
crime was being committed. rigors of testifying, unwavering in her claim that she was
raped. 18
c. the victim is still a virgin.
Accused-appellant claims he was coerced and tortured by Pasay
2. reliance on the conflicting testimony of the victim and not that policemen to admit the rape, showing to the trial court bodily
of the accused. signs of said abuse. 19 Aside from his self-serving assertion, the
truth of such allegation was not proven. Besides, this allegedly
A recent decision of this Court in a case of statutory rape coerced admission of guilt cannot affect the prosecution's case
observed that, usually, the average adult's hymen measures 2.8 which has been established by other positive evidence pointing
to 3 centimeters in diameter, making it compatible with, or easily to his guilt beyond reasonable doubt.
penetrable by an average size penis. The victim being of tender
age, the penetration of the male organ could go only as deep as Finding no reversible error in the decision subject of this appeal,
the labia. In any case, for rape to be committed, full penetration we affirm the same in its entirety.
is not required. It is enough that there is proof of entrance of the
male organ within the labia or pudendum of the female organ. WHEREFORE, the decision is AFFIRMED. Accused-appellant is
Even the slightest penetration is sufficient to consummate the sentenced to suffer the penalty of reclusion perpetua and to
crime of rape. 12 indemnify the victim, Diana Rose Castro in the amount of
P30,000.00 in line with prevailing jurisprudence. Costs against
Perfect penetration, rupture of the hymen or laceration of the the appellant.
vagina are not essential for the offense of consummated rape.
Entry, to the least extent, of the labia or lips of the female organ SO ORDERED.
is sufficient. 13 Diana's remaining a virgin does not negate rape.
PEOPLE v. ATENTO
70

Republic of the Philippines Glenda B. Aringo, who was born on June 18, 1970, is INTER
SUPREME COURT ALIA with an intellectual capacity between the ages of nine (9)
Manila and twelve (12) years. As such, her intellectual functioning is
within the mentally defective level. Her fund of information is
FIRST DIVISION inadequate, her judgment is unsound, her thinking and working
capacity is poor. She is unable to distinguish essential from non-
G.R. No. 84728 April 26, 1991 essential details. Her vocabulary is limited. Her capacity for her
perceptual processes is unsatisfactory. She lacks the capacity
for abstracting and synthesizing concepts. However, in the midst
PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, plaintiff-appellee,
of all these, Glenda was found capable of telling the truth. 2
vs.
CESAR ATENTO accused-appellant.
Benita Aringo, Glenda's mother, testified that her daughter
reached only third grade and did not like to continue studying,
The Solicitor General for plaintiff-appellee.
preferring to play with children younger than she, even when she
was already pregnant. After delivering her child, she would often
Public Attorney's Office for accused-appellant. leave its care to Benita, and play marbles with the children rather
than feed her baby. Another relative, Caridad Aringo, testified
that Glenda had the mentality of a 12-year old and was fond of
rubber bands and playing cards.
CRUZ, J.:p
The Court finds this to be the reason why, while a rape victim
Asked how she felt while she was being raped, the complainant with normal intelligence, would have said that the attack on her
replied: "Masarap." The trial judge believed her but just the same caused her much physical pain and mental agony, Glenda
convicted the accused-appellant. The case is now before us. naively declared that Atento's sexual organ in hers gave her
much pleasure.
The complainant is Glenda Aringo, who was sixteen years old at
the time of the alleged offense. She is the neighbor of Cesar It is worth observing that Glenda's child was born on December,
Atento, the herein accused-appellant, a 39-year old store-keeper nine months after her rape in April, and that, according to the trial
with a wife and eight children. Her claim is that Atento raped her judge, there was a remarkable resemblance between Atento and
five separate times, the first sometime in April 1986. the boy.

She says that on that first occasion she went to Atento's store in Article 335 of the Revised Penal Code provides:
Barangay 18, Minoro, Cabagñan, in Legazpi City to buy bread.
Her parents were at work and Atento was alone in his house Art. 335. When and how rape committed. –– Rape is committed
except for his three-year old daughter. Glenda claims Atento by having carnal knowledge of a woman under any of the
cajoled her into coming inside the house and then took her following circumstances:
downstairs, where he succeeded in deflowering her. She says
her maiden head ached and bled. Afterwards, he gave her 1. By using force or intimidation;
P5.00.
2. When the woman is deprived of reason or otherwise
Glenda speaks of four other times when he raped her. It was unconscious and
later (presumably because her hymen had healed) that she felt
tickled by his manhood and described the act of coitus as
3. When the woman is under twelve years of age, even though
"masarap." 1
neither of the circumstances mentioned in the two next
preceding paragraphs shall be present.
The girl says she never told anybody about Atento's attacks on
her because he had threatened her life. But she could not
xxx xxx xxx
conceal her condition for long and after five months had to admit
she was pregnant. She revealed the accused-appellant as the
father of the foetus in her womb. The child was delivered on It has not been clearly established that Atento employed force or
December 27, 1987, and christened Hubert Buendia Aringo. threat against Glenda to make her submit to his lust.
Nevertheless, there is no question that Atento is guilty of rape
upon Glenda under paragraph 2, because the girl was deprived
Atento denies the charge against him, saying it was pure
of reason. Alternatively, he is liable under paragraph 3, because
harassment concocted by a relative of the girl who wanted to
his victim had the mentality of a girl less than twelve years old at
eject him from the land where his house was erected. Insisting
the time she was raped.
that Glenda was a girl of loose morals, he says he had twice
seen her in sexual congress with a man and that she had once
offered her body to his thirteen year old son for a fee of P5.00. In People v. Atutubo, 3 this Court held:

Glenda's description of the act of coitus as pleasurable would It is not necessary under Article 335 for the culprit to actually
have destroyed the whole case against Atento but for one deprive the victim of reason prior to the rape, as by the
singular significant fact. The girl is a mental retardate. administration of drugs or by some other illicit method. Ms
provision also applies to cases where the woman has been
earlier deprived of reason by other causes, as when she is
Ascendo Belmonte, a clinical psychologist at Don Susano
congenitally retarded or has previously suffered some traumatic
Rodriguez Memorial Mental Hospital, subjected the girl to a
experience that has lowered her mental capacity. In such
series of intelligence tests, to wit, the Wecslar adult intelligence
situations, the victim is in the same category as a child below 12
scale, revised beta exam, standard progressive matrices, and
years of age for lacking the necessary will to object to the
the Bender visual motor gestalt test, with the following findings:
attacker's lewd intentions.
71

In People v. Palma, 4 where a 14-year old mental retardate was sexual experiences as "tickling" and "masarap" for that would
another rape victim, we held that: only elicit disdain and laughter. Only a simple-minded artless
child would do it. And Glenda falls within the level of a 9-12 year
The crime committed by Palma is rape under Article 335(2) of old child. And Glenda was telling the truth!
the Revised Penal Code. Copulation with a woman known to be
mentally incapable of giving even an imperfect consent is rape. There is no doubt that when she submitted herself to the
Physical intimidation need not precede sexual intercourse accused later for subsequent intercourses, she was dominated
considering the age, mental abnormality and deficiency of the more by fear and ignorance than by reason.
complainant.
In any event, whether under paragraph 2 or under paragraph 3
So also in People v. Sunga, 5 where the offended party was 23 of Article 335 of the Revised Penal Code, the accused-appellant
years old with the mentality of a child about 8 to 9 years of age: deserves to be punished for the rape of Glenda Azingo.

Because of her mental condition, complainant is incapable of The trial court found the accused-appellant guilty of rape as
giving consent to the sexual intercourse. She is in the same charged, meaning that he raped the victim five times, but we do
class as a woman deprived of reason or otherwise unconscious. not agree that the other four rapes have been conclusively
Appellant therefore committed rape in having sexual intercourse proven. Otherwise, he would have to be punished for five
with her. separate rapes. Except for this and the civil indemnity, which is
increased from P20,000.00 to P30,000.00, we agree with the
In his authoritative work on Criminal Law, Chief Justice Aquino sentence imposing on him the penalty of reclusion perpetua, the
explains Paragraph 2 as follows. 6 obligation to acknowledge and support Hubert Buendia Aringo as
his own spurious child, and to pay the costs.
. . . in the rape of a woman deprived of reason or unconscious,
the victim has no will. The absence of will determines the WHEREFORE, the appealed judgment is AFFIRMED as above
existence of the rape. Such lack of will may exist not only when modified. It is so ordered.
the victim is unconscious or totally deprived of reason, but also
when she is suffering some mental deficiency impairing her PEOPLE v. CAMPUHAN
reason or free will. In that case, it is not necessary that she
should offer real opposition or constant resistance to the sexual
Republic of the Philippines
intercourse. Carnal knowledge of a woman so weak in intellect
SUPREME COURT
as to be incapable of legal consent constitutes rape. Where the
Manila
offended woman was feeble-minded, sickly and almost an idiot,
sexual intercourse with her is rape. Her failure to offer resistance
EN BANC
to the act did not mean consent for she was incapable of giving
any rational consent.
G.R. No. 129433 March 30, 2000
The deprivation of reason need not be complete. Mental
abnormality or deficiency is enough. Cohabitation with a feeble- PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, plaintiff,
minded, idiotic woman is rape. vs.
PRIMO CAMPUHAN Y BELLO accused.
The trial court, however, held Atento guilty of rape under
Paragraph 3, citing People v. Asturias, 7 where it was held: BELLOSILLO, J.:

Assuming that complainant Vilma Ortega voluntarily submitted On 3 April 1990 this Court in People v. Orita 1 finally did away
herself to the bestial desire of appellant still the crime committed with frustrated rape 2 and allowed only attempted rape and
is rape under paragraph 3 of Article 335 of the Revised Penal consummated rape to remain in our statute books. The instant
Code. This is so even if the circumstances of force and case lurks at the threshold of another emasculation of the stages
intimidation, or of the victim being deprived of reason or of execution of rape by considering almost every attempt at
otherwise unconscious are absent. The victim has the mentality sexual violation of a woman as consummated rape, that is, if the
of a child below seven years old. If sexual intercourse with a contrary view were to be adopted. The danger there is that that
victim under twelve years of age is rape, then it should follow concept may send the wrong signal to every roaming lothario,
that carnal knowledge with a seventeen-year old girl whose whenever the opportunity bares itself, to better intrude with
mental capacity is that of a seven year old child would constitute climactic gusto, sans any restraint, since after all any attempted
rape. fornication would be considered consummated rape and
punished as such. A mere strafing of the citadel of passion would
then be considered a deadly fait accompli, which is absurd.
In coming to his conclusion, Judge Gregorio A. Consulta
declared:
In Orita we held that rape was consummated from the moment
the offender had carnal knowledge of the victim since by it he
. . . Given the low I.Q. of Glenda, it is impossible to believe that
attained his objective. All the elements of the offense were
she could have fabricated her charges against the accused. She
already present and nothing more was left for the offender to do,
lacks the gift of articulation and inventiveness. She could not
having performed all the acts necessary to produce the crime
even explain with ease the meaning of rape, a term which she
and accomplish it. We ruled then that perfect penetration was not
learned in the community. Even with intensive coaching,
essential; any penetration of the female organ by the male
assuming that happened, on the witness stand where she was
organ, however slight, was sufficient. The Court further held that
alone, it would show with her testimony falling into irretrievable
entry of the labia or lips of the female organ, even without
pieces. But that did not happen. She proceeded, though with
rupture of the hymen or laceration of the vagina, was sufficient to
much difficulty, with childlike innocence. A smart and
warrant conviction for consummated rape. We distinguished
perspicacious person would hesitate to describe to the Court her
consummated rape from attempted rape where there was no
72

penetration of the female organ because not all acts of execution back of their compound until they were advised by their
were performed as the offender merely commenced the neighbors to call the barangay officials instead of detaining him
commission of a felony directly by overt acts. 3 The inference that for his misdeed. Physical examination of the victim yielded
may be derived therefrom is that complete or full penetration of negative results. No evident sign of extra-genital physical injury
the vagina is not required for rape to be consummated. Any was noted by the medico-legal officer on Crysthel's body as her
penetration, in whatever degree, is enough to raise the crime to hymen was intact and its orifice was only 0.5 cm. in diameter.
its consummated stage.
Primo Campuhan had only himself for a witness in his defense.
But the Court in Orita clarified the concept of penetration in rape He maintained his innocence and assailed the charge as a mere
by requiring entry into the labia or lips of the female organ, even scheme of Crysthel's mother who allegedly harbored ill will
if there be no rupture of the hymen or laceration of the vagina, to against him for his refusal to run an errand for her. 9 He asserted
warrant a conviction for consummated rape. While the entry of that in truth Crysthel was in a playing mood and wanted to ride
the penis into the lips of the female organ was considered on his back when she suddenly pulled him down causing both of
synonymous with mere touching of the external genitalia, e.g., them to fall down on the floor. It was in this fallen position that
labia majora, labia minora, etc.,4 the crucial doctrinal bottom line Corazon chanced upon them and became hysterical. Corazon
is that touching must be inextricably viewed in light of, in relation slapped him and accused him of raping her child. He got mad
to, or as an essential part of, the process of penile penetration, but restrained himself from hitting back when he realized she
and not just mere touching in the ordinary sense. In other words, was a woman. Corazon called for help from her brothers to stop
the touching must be tacked to the penetration itself. The him as he ran down from the second floor.
importance of the requirement of penetration, however slight,
cannot be gainsaid because where entry into the labia or the lips Vicente, Corazon's brother, timely responded to her call for help
of the female genitalia has not been established, the crime and accosted Primo. Vicente punched him and threatened to kill
committed amounts merely to attempted rape. him. Upon hearing the threat, Primo immediately ran towards the
house of Conrado Plata but Vicente followed him there. Primo
Verily, this should be the indicium of the Court in determining pleaded for a chance to explain as he reasoned out that the
whether rape has been committed either in its attempted or in its accusation was not true. But Vicente kicked him instead. When
consummated stage; otherwise, no substantial distinction would Primo saw Vicente holding a piece of lead pipe, Primo raised his
exist between the two, despite the fact that penalty-wise, this hands and turned his back to avoid the blow. At this moment, the
distinction, threadbare as it may seem, irrevocably spells the relatives and neighbors of Vicente prevailed upon him to take
difference between life and death for the accused — a reclusive Primo to the barangay hall instead, and not to maul or possibly
life that is not even perpetua but only temporal on one hand, and kill him.
the ultimate extermination of life on the other. And, arguing on
another level, if the case at bar cannot be deemed attempted but Although Primo Campuhan insisted on his innocence, the trial
consummated rape, what then would constitute attempted rape? court on 27 May 1997 found him guilty of statutory rape,
Must our field of choice be thus limited only to consummated sentenced him to the extreme penalty of death, and ordered him
rape and acts of lasciviousness since attempted rape would no to pay his victim P50,000.00 for moral damages, P25,000.00 for
longer be possible in light of the view of those who disagree with exemplary damages, and the costs.
this ponencia?
The accused Primo Campuhan seriously assails the credibility of
On 27 May 1997 Primo Campuhan y Bello was found guilty of Ma. Corazon Pamintuan. He argues that her narration should not
statutory rape and sentenced by the court a quo to the extreme be given any weight or credence since it was punctured with
penalty of death, 5 hence this case before us on automatic implausible statements and improbabilities so inconsistent with
review under Art. 335 of the Revised Penal Code as amended by human nature and experience. He claims that it was truly
RA 7659. 6 inconceivable for him to commit the rape considering that
Crysthel's younger sister was also in the room playing while
As may be culled from the evidence on record, on 25 April 1996, Corazon was just downstairs preparing Milo drinks for her
at around 4 o'clock in the afternoon, Ma. Corazon P. Pamintuan, daughters. Their presence alone as possible eyewitnesses and
mother of four (4)-year old Crysthel Pamintuan, went down from the fact that the episode happened within the family compound
the second floor of their house to prepare Milo chocolate drinks where a call for assistance could easily be heard and responded
for her two (2) children. At the ground floor she met Primo to, would have been enough to deter him from committing the
Campuhan who was then busy filling small plastic bags with crime. Besides, the door of the room was wide open for anybody
water to be frozen into ice in the freezer located at the second to see what could be taking place inside. Primo insists that it was
floor. Primo was a helper of Conrado Plata Jr., brother of almost inconceivable that Corazon could give such a vivid
Corazon. As Corazon was busy preparing the drinks, she heard description of the alleged sexual contact when from where she
one of her daughters cry, "Ayo'ko, ayo'ko!" 7 prompting Corazon stood she could not have possibly seen the alleged touching of
to rush upstairs. Thereupon, she saw Primo Campuhan inside the sexual organs of the accused and his victim. He asserts that
her children's room kneeling before Crysthel whose pajamas or the absence of any external signs of physical injuries or of
"jogging pants" and panty were already removed, while his short penetration of Crysthel's private parts more than bolsters his
pants were down to his knees. innocence.

According to Corazon, Primo was forcing his penis into In convicting the accused, the trial court relied quite heavily on
Crysthel's vagina. Horrified, she cursed the accused, "P - t - ng the testimony of Corazon that she saw Primo with his short pants
ina mo, anak ko iyan!" and boxed him several times. He evaded down to his knees kneeling before Crysthel whose pajamas and
her blows and pulled up his pants. He pushed Corazon aside panty were supposedly "already removed" and that Primo was
when she tried to block his path. Corazon then ran out and "forcing his penis into Crysthel's vagina." The gravamen of the
shouted for help thus prompting her brother, a cousin and an offense of statutory rape is carnal knowledge of a woman below
uncle who were living within their compound, to chase the twelve (12), as provided in Art. 335, par. (3), of the Revised
accused. 8Seconds later, Primo was apprehended by those who Penal Code. Crysthel was only four (4) years old when sexually
answered Corazon's call for help. They held the accused at the molested, thus raising the penalty, from reclusion perpetua to
73

death, to the single indivisible penalty of death under RA 7659, A review of the records clearly discloses that the prosecution
Sec. 11, the offended party being below seven (7) years old. We utterly failed to discharge its onus of proving that Primo's penis
have said often enough that in concluding that carnal knowledge was able to penetrate Crysthel's vagina however slight. Even if
took place, full penetration of the vaginal orifice is not an we grant arguendo that Corazon witnessed Primo in the act of
essential ingredient, nor is the rupture of the hymen necessary; sexually molesting her daughter, we seriously doubt the veracity
the mere touching of the external genitalia by the penis capable of her claim that she saw the inter-genital contact between Primo
of consummating the sexual act is sufficient to constitute carnal and Crysthel. When asked what she saw upon entering her
knowledge. 10 But the act of touching should be understood here children's room Corazon plunged into saying that she saw Primo
as inherently part of the entry of the penis into the labias of the poking his penis on the vagina of Crysthel without explaining her
female organ and not mere touching alone of the mons pubis or relative position to them as to enable her to see clearly and
the pudendum. sufficiently, in automotive lingo, the contact point. It should be
recalled that when Corazon chanced upon Primo and Crysthel,
In People v. De la Peña 11 we clarified that the decisions finding a the former was allegedly in a kneeling position, which Corazon
case for rape even if the attacker's penis merely touched the described thus:
external portions of the female genitalia were made in the
context of the presence or existence of an erect penis capable of Q: How was Primo holding your daughter?
full penetration. Where the accused failed to achieve an erection,
had a limp or flaccid penis, or an oversized penis which could A: (The witness is demonstrating in such a way that the
not fit into the victim's vagina, the Court nonetheless held that chest of the accused is pinning down the victim, while
rape was consummated on the basis of the victim's testimony his right hand is holding his penis and his left hand is
that the accused repeatedly tried, but in vain, to insert his penis spreading the legs of the victim).
into her vagina and in all likelihood reached the labia of her
pudendum as the victim felt his organ on the lips of her It can reasonably be drawn from the foregoing narration that
vulva, 12 or that the penis of the accused touched the middle part Primo's kneeling position rendered an unbridled observation
of her vagina. 13 Thus, touching when applied to rape cases does impossible. Not even a vantage point from the side of the
not simply mean mere epidermal contact, stroking or grazing of accused and the victim would have provided Corazon an
organs, a slight brush or a scrape of the penis on the external unobstructed view of Primo's penis supposedly reaching
layer of the victim's vagina, or the mons pubis, as in this case. Crysthel's external genitalia, i.e., labia majora, labia minora,
There must be sufficient and convincing proof that the penis hymen, clitoris, etc., since the legs and arms of Primo would
indeed touched the labias or slid into the female organ, and not have hidden his movements from Corazon's sight, not to
merely stroked the external surface thereof, for an accused to be discount the fact that Primo's right hand was allegedly holding
convicted of consummated rape. 14 As the labias, which are his penis thereby blocking it from Corazon's view. It is the burden
required to be "touched" by the penis, are by their natural situs or of the prosecution to establish how Corazon could have seen the
location beneath the mons pubis or the vaginal surface, to touch sexual contact and to shove her account into the permissive
them with the penis is to attain some degree of penetration sphere of credibility. It is not enough that she claims that she saw
beneath the surface, hence, the conclusion that touching the what was done to her daughter. It is required that her claim be
labia majora or the labia minora of the pudendum constitutes properly demonstrated to inspire belief. The prosecution failed in
consummated rape. this respect, thus we cannot conclude without any taint of
serious doubt that inter-genital contact was at all achieved. To
The pudendum or vulva is the collective term for the female hold otherwise would be to resolve the doubt in favor of the
genital organs that are visible in the perineal area,e.g., mons prosecution but to run roughshod over the constitutional right of
pubis, labia majora, labia minora, the hymen, the clitoris, the the accused to be presumed innocent.
vaginal orifice, etc. The mons pubis is the rounded eminence
that becomes hairy after puberty, and is instantly visible within Corazon insists that Primo did not restrain himself from pursuing
the surface. The next layer is the labia majora or the outer lips of his wicked intention despite her timely appearance, thus giving
the female organ composed of the outer convex surface and the her the opportunity to fully witness his beastly act.
inner surface. The skin of the outer convex surface is covered
with hair follicles and is pigmented, while the inner surface is a
We are not persuaded. It is inconsistent with man's instinct of
thin skin which does not have any hair but has many sebaceous
self-preservation to remain where he is and persist in satisfying
glands. Directly beneath the labia majora is the labia
his lust even when he knows fully well that his dastardly acts
minora. 15 Jurisprudence dictates that the labia majora must be
have already been discovered or witnessed by no less than the
entered for rape to be consummated, 16 and not merely for the
mother of his victim. For, the normal behavior or reaction of
penis to stroke the surface of the female organ. Thus, a grazing
Primo upon learning of Corazon's presence would have been to
of the surface of the female organ or touching the mons pubis of
pull his pants up to avoid being caught literally with his pants
the pudendum is not sufficient to constitute consummated rape.
down. The interval, although relatively short, provided more than
Absent any showing of the slightest penetration of the female
enough opportunity for Primo not only to desist from but even to
organ, i.e., touching of either labia of the pudendum by the
conceal his evil design.
penis, there can be no consummated rape; at most, it can only
be attempted rape, if not acts of lasciviousness.
What appears to be the basis of the conviction of the accused
was Crysthel's answer to the question of the court —
Judicial depiction of consummated rape has not been confined
to the oft-quoted "touching of the female organ,"17 but has also
progressed into being described as "the introduction of the male Q: Did the penis of Primo touch your organ?
organ into the labia of the pudendum," 18 or "the bombardment of
the drawbridge." 19 But, to our mild, the case at bar merely A: Yes, sir.
constitutes a "shelling of the castle of orgasmic potency," or as
earlier stated, a "strafing of the citadel of passion. But when asked further whether his penis penetrated her organ,
she readily said, "No." Thus —
74

Q: But did his penis penetrate your organ? commission of rape directly by overt acts, and does not perform
all the acts of execution which should produce the crime of rape
A: No, sir. 20 by reason of some cause or accident other than his own
spontaneous desistance. All the elements of attempted rape —
This testimony alone should dissipate the mist of confusion that and only of attempted rape — are present in the instant case,
enshrouds the question of whether rape in this case was hence, the accused should be punished only for it.
consummated. It has foreclosed the possibility of Primo's penis
penetrating her vagina, however slight. Crysthel made a The penalty for attempted rape is two (2) degrees lower than the
categorical statement denying penetration, 27 obviously induced imposable penalty of death for the offense charged, which is
by a question propounded to her who could not have been statutory rape of a minor below seven (7) years. Two (2) degrees
aware of the finer distinctions between touching and penetration. lower is reclusion temporal, the range of which is twelve (12)
Consequently, it is improper and unfair to attach to this reply of a years and one (1) day to twenty (20) years. Applying the
four (4)-year old child, whose vocabulary is yet as Indeterminate Sentence Law, and in the absence of any
underdeveloped as her sex and whose language is bereft of mitigating or aggravating circumstance, the maximum of the
worldly sophistication, an adult interpretation that because the penalty to be imposed upon the accused shall be taken from the
penis of the accused touched her organ there was sexual entry. medium period of reclusion temporal, the range of which is
Nor can it be deduced that in trying to penetrate the victim's fourteen (14) years, eight (8) months and (1) day to seventeen
organ the penis of the accused touched the middle portion of her (17) years and four (4) months, while the minimum shall be
vagina and entered the labia of her pudendum as the taken from the penalty next lower in degree, which is prision
prosecution failed to establish sufficiently that Primo made efforts mayor, the range of which is from six (6) years and one (1) day
to penetrate Crysthel. 22Corazon did not say, nay, not even hint to twelve (12) years, in any of its periods.
that Primo's penis was erect or that he responded with an
erection. 23 On the contrary, Corazon even narrated that Primo WHEREFORE, the Decision of the court a quo finding accused
had to hold his penis with his right hand, thus showing that he PRIMO "SONNY" CAMPUHAN Y BELLO guilty of statutory rape
had yet to attain an erection to be able to penetrate his victim. and sentencing him to death and to pay damages is MODIFIED.
He is instead found guilty of ATTEMPTED RAPE and sentenced
Antithetically, the possibility of Primo's penis having breached to an indeterminate prison term of eight (8) years four (4) months
Crysthel's vagina is belied by the child's own assertion that she and ten (10) days of prision mayor medium as minimum, to
resisted Primo's advances by putting her legs close fourteen (14) years ten (10) months and twenty (20) days
together; 24 consequently, she did not feel any intense pain but ofreclusion temporal medium as maximum. Costs de oficio.
just felt "not happy" about what Primo did to her. 25 Thus, she
only shouted "Ayo'ko, ayo'ko!" not "Aray ko, aray ko!" In cases SO ORDERED.1âwphi1.nêt
where penetration was not fully established, the Court had
anchored its conclusion that rape nevertheless was [G.R. Nos. 136300-02. September 24, 2002.]
consummated on the victim's testimony that she felt pain, or the
medico-legal finding of discoloration in the inner lips of the PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, Plaintiff-Appellee, v.
vagina, or the labia minora was already gaping with redness, or EMMANUEL AARON, Accused-Appellant.
the hymenal tags were no longer visible. 26 None was shown in
DECISION
this case. Although a child's testimony must be received with due
consideration on account of her tender age, the Court endeavors
at the same time to harness only what in her story appears to be CORONA, J.:
true, acutely aware of the equally guaranteed rights of the
accused. Thus, we have to conclude that even on the basis of
the testimony of Crysthel alone the accused cannot be held Before us on appeal is the Decision 1 of the Regional Trial Court
of Balanga, Bataan, Branch 3, in Criminal Cases Nos. 6730,
liable for consummated rape; worse, be sentenced to
6731 and 6732 convicting herein appellant, Emmanuel Aaron, of
death.1âwphi1 one count of rape and sentencing him to suffer the penalty of
reclusion perpetua and to pay the victim P50,000 as civil
Lastly, it is pertinent to mention the medico legal officer's finding indemnity.chanrob1es virtua1 1aw 1ibrary
in this case that there were no external signs of physical injuries
on complaining witness' body to conclude from a medical The appellant, Emmanuel Aaron y Dizon, was charged with three
counts of rape defined and penalized under Articles 266-A and
perspective that penetration had taken place. As Dr. Aurea P.
266-B of the Revised Penal Code, 2 respectively, in three
Villena explained, although the absence of complete penetration separate criminal complaints filed and signed by the private
of the hymen does not negate the possibility of contact, she complainant, Jona G. Grajo, and subscribed and sworn to on
clarified that there was no medical basis to hold that there was January 17, 1998 before 3rd Assistant Provincial Prosecutor
sexual contact between the accused and the victim. 27 Oscar M. Lasam. Save for their docket numbers, the said
criminal complaints are identically worded thus:chanrob1es
virtual 1aw library
In cases of rape where there is a positive testimony and a
medical certificate, both should in all respects complement each That on or about 16 January 1998 at Brgy. San Jose, Balanga,
other; otherwise, to rely on the testimonial evidence alone, in Bataan, Philippines and within the jurisdiction of this Honorable
utter disregard of the manifest variance in the medical certificate, Court, the said accused, armed with a knife and by means of
would be productive of unwarranted or even mischievous results. force and intimidation, did then and there willfully, unlawfully and
It is necessary to carefully ascertain whether the penis of the feloniously succeed in having sexual intercourse with the
offended party JONA G. GRAJO, against the will and consent of
accused in reality entered the labial threshold of the female
the latter, to her damage and prejudice.
organ to accurately conclude that rape was consummated.
Failing in this, the thin line that separates attempted rape from Contrary to law.
consummated rape will significantly disappear.
Upon arraignment on January 30, 1998, the accused, Emmanuel
Aaron, assisted by counsel of his choice, entered the plea of "not
Under Art. 6, in relation to Art. 335, of the Revised Penal Code,
guilty" to each of the three complaints in Criminal Cases Nos.
rape is attempted when the offender commences the 6730, 6731 and 6732. Thereafter, joint trial on the merits ensued.
75

in-law, herein private complainant, Jona Grajo. 12 Jona occupied


The evidence of the prosecution shows that, on January 16, a room on the second floor while the couple stayed at the ground
1998, at around 7:00 o’clock in the morning, the private floor. 13
complainant, Jona Grajo, was asleep in bed ("papag") inside her
room on the second floor of the apartment unit which she shared On the date of the incident, Emmanuel admitted that he and
with her sister and her brother-in-law, herein appellant Jona were the only persons inside the apartment. He had just
Emmanuel Aaron. Jona was wearing only a panty and was arrived from work as a night-shift waiter at Base One restaurant
covered with a blanket. Sensing that someone was inside her in Balanga, Bataan. He had earlier met Bong Talastas at 7:00
room, Jona opened her eyes and was surprised to find o’clock in the morning as Bong was preparing to leave his house
Emmanuel sitting beside her in bed totally naked. Emmanuel while his wife had gone to the market. Emmanuel changed his
immediately went on top of Jona and poked a knife on her neck. clothes upstairs where the cabinet was located opposite the
Jona’s attempt to cry for help proved futile as Emmanuel quickly room occupied by Jona. Emmanuel noticed that the door of
covered her mouth with his left hand. 3 Jona’s room was partly open so he peeped through the narrow
opening and saw her wearing only a panty. He was about to
Emmanuel removed her panty and succeeded in having carnal close the door when Jona woke up and began shouting. 14
intercourse with Jona who could only manage to cry.
Subsequently, Emmanuel withdrew his penis and ordered Jona Emmanuel did not know why Jona kept on shouting. She even
to lie down on the floor. He inserted his penis into her vagina for followed as Emmanuel descended the stairs and she proceeded
the second time with the knife still poked on Jona’s neck. to the nearby store of their landlady. Emmanuel went her to the
Thereafter, Emmanuel stood up and commanded Jona to lie store to caution Jona about her words ("Ayusin mo ang sinasabi
down near the headboard of the "papag" bed where he inserted mo") because she was telling their landlady that he raped her.
his penis into her vagina for the third time, still armed with a However, Jona ignored him so he left and decided to see Bong
knife, and continued making pumping motions ("umiindayog"). 4 Talastas in San Jose, Balanga, Bataan to inquire from the latter
why Jona was accusing him of having raped her. Emmanuel
After the incident, Jona pleaded to be released but Emmanuel denied that he was armed with a knife during the incident, much
initially refused. He budged only after Jona told him that she less threatened Jona with it. 15
urgently needed to relieve herself ("Ihing-ihi na ako, puputok na
ang pantog ko.") but not before warning her not to tell anyone On October 14, 1998, the trial court rendered a decision, 16 the
about the incident. Jona quickly put on her panty and hurried dispositive portion of which read:chanrob1es virtual 1aw library
down the street in front of the apartment with only a blanket
covering herself. Her cries drew the attention of a neighbor, WHEREFORE, the guilt of the accused for the single act of rape
Lilibeth Isidro, who tried to persuade Jona to go back inside the having been proved beyond reasonable doubt, the accused is
apartment, to no avail, for fear of Emmanuel. Upon the prodding sentenced to suffer the penalty of reclusion perpetua with the
of another neighbor, a certain Agnes, Jona revealed that she accessory penalty provided by law. The accused is further
was raped by her brother-in-law, 5 the appellant herein. required to indemnify the complainant the sum of P50,000.00
and to pay the costs.
Jona proceeded to the nearby store of their landlady upon the
latter’s arrival from the market and she related the misfortune SO ORDERED.
that had befallen her. At that instance, Emmanuel approached
and warned her to be careful with her words. Then he left for the Dissatisfied with the decision of the trial court, Emmanuel Aaron
house of Bong Talastas. 6 interposed the instant appeal. In his Brief, 17 appellant raised a
single assignment of error:chanrob1es virtual 1aw library
After Emmanuel left, Jona went back to their house and dressed
up. Thereafter, she went to the police station in Balanga, Bataan THE TRIAL COURT ERRED IN FINDING THE GUILT OF THE
to report the incident. 7 Police Officers Rommel Morales and ACCUSED BEYOND REASONABLE DOUBT
Edgardo Flores proceeded to the residence of the private
complainant who appeared very tense but the neighbors Appellant argues that the account of the private complainant,
informed them that Emmanuel had left. The police officers then Jona Grajo, of the alleged incidents of rape appears incredible
proceeded to the house of Bong Talastas in San Jose, Balanga, and contrary to common human experience. Based on her
Bataan, where the victim told them Emmanuel could have testimony, the appellant suddenly placed himself on top of her
possibly gone. On arrival there, they found Emmanuel with his right hand poking a knife on her neck and with his left
conversing with Bong Talastas and they immediately arrested the hand covering her mouth. Subsequently, the appellant removed
appellant herein upon ascertaining his identity. 8 her panty and succeeded in inserting his penis into her private
part even without previously opening his zipper or removing his
After bringing Emmanuel to the police station, Police Officers pants. Likewise, the private complainant did not offer any
Morales and Flores accompanied Jona to the provincial hospital resistance although she could have done so. After the alleged
in Bataan for physical examination. Thereupon, the attending acts of rape, the victim did not even complain to her sister who,
physician at the Bataan Provincial Hospital, Dra. Emelita by then, had already arrived from the market. The
Firmacion, M.D., found "multiple healed laceration(s) at 1, 3, 5, uncharacteristic behavior of the private complainant could only
6, 9 o’clock position(s), incomplete type" in Jona Grajo’s private be explained by the fact that she admittedly had several sexual
part. experiences in the past with her boyfriend and live-in partner
Bong Talastas. The appellant theorizes that private complainant
At the trial, Dra. Firmacion identified her signature 9 appearing wanted to get back at him for the embarrassment of being seen
on the lower right portion of the medical certificate 10 and by him in her panty after her boyfriend, Bong Talastas, left the
affirmed the medical findings contained therein. The multiple apartment. Appellant downplays the testimony of PO1 Rommel
hymenal lacerations sustained by Jona which were respectively Morales as not worthy of credence for lack of corroborative
indicated in the medical certificate as 1 o’clock, 3 o’clock, 5 evidence. 18
o’clock, 6 o’clock and 9 o’clock could have been caused by
sexual intercourse, masturbation, strenuous exercises or On the other hand, the prosecution showed that the appellant
penetration of any hard object. The appearance of a lacerated was already naked even before the private complainant was
hymen could indicate the approximate time when the laceration awakened by his presence; that the private complainant could
was sustained. In the case of Jona Grajo, her hymenal not effectively offer any resistance as the appellant was armed
lacerations were completely healed, indicating that the same with a knife which he used to intimidate her; and that the private
were sustained at least one month before she was examined on complainant’s being a non-virgin did not discount rape on
January 16, 1998. However, it was possible that she had sexual January 16, 1998. 19
intercourse immediately before the said examination. 11
Article 266-A of the Revised Penal Code provides:chanrob1es
The defense denied any liability for the three counts of rape virtual 1aw library
charged. Appellant Emmanuel Aaron testified that he and his
wife were residing in an apartment unit together with his sister- Article 266-A. Rape; When And How Committed. — Rape is
76

committed — with only a blanket to cover her naked body. Her neighbors took
note of her obviously troubled condition and admonished her to
1) By a man who shall have carnal knowledge of a woman under go back inside the apartment but she refused, claiming that she
any of the following circumstances:chanrob1es virtual 1aw had been raped. She sought refuge at the nearby store of their
library landlady to whom she confided that she was raped by her
brother-in-law. Private complainant hurried back to their
a) Through force, threat, or intimidation; apartment to get dressed only upon making sure that the
appellant had already left the place. Without losing time, she
b) When the offended party is deprived of reason or otherwise proceeded directly to the police station and lodged a complaint
unconscious; for rape against the Appellant.

c) By means of fraudulent machinations or grave abuse of Prosecution witness PO1 Rommel Morales of Balanga, Bataan,
authority; and who was the police officer on duty at the time Jona Grajo came
to the police station, recounted during the trial that the private
d) When the offended party is under twelve (12) years of age or complainant was crying and trembling on arrival at the Balanga,
is demented, even though none of the circumstances mentioned Bataan police station on January 16, 1998. Private complainant
above are present. took time to answer the queries of the police officer since she
was crying uncontrollably. When she finally got hold of herself,
2) By any person who, under any of the circumstances the private complainant reported that she had been raped by the
mentioned in paragraph 1 hereof, shall commit an act of sexual appellant who was subsequently arrested by the police. The
assault by inserting his penis into another person’s mouth or anal actuations of the private complainant immediately after the
orifice or any instrument or object, into the genital or anal orifice incident may be considered as part of the res gestae that
of another person. substantially strengthens her claim of sexual assault by the
appellant. 23
Article 266-B of the same Code provides:chanrob1es virtual 1aw
library On the other hand, all the appellant can offer in his defense is
bare denial. He claims that he had just changed his clothes on
Article 266-B. Penalties. — Rape under paragraph 1 of the next the second floor of their apartment where his cabinet was
preceding article shall be punished by reclusion perpetua. located when he chanced upon the private complainant naked
inside her room as the door was then slightly ajar. He did not do
Whenever the rape is committed with the use of a deadly anything further as the private complainant was awakened and
weapon or by two or more persons, the penalty shall be she already started shouting. In view of the positive and
reclusion perpetua to death. convincing testimony of the private complainant, however, the
defense of denial must fail. It is well-settled that denial is an
x x x intrinsically weak defense which must be buttressed by strong
evidence of non-culpability to merit credibility. 24

It should be stressed that in the review of rape cases, this Court The appellant argues that it was impossible for him to have
is almost invariably guided by three principles: (1) an accusation inserted his penis into the private part of the complainant without
of rape can be made with facility; it is difficult to prove but more first opening his zipper or removing his pants. This argument of
difficult for the person accused, though innocent, to disprove; (2) the appellant is misleading for the reason that, per the testimony
in view of the intrinsic nature of the crime of rape where only two of the private complainant, the appellant was already naked
persons are usually involved, the testimony of the complainant is when his presence roused her from her sleep:chanrob1es virtual
scrutinized with extreme caution and (3) the evidence of the 1aw library
prosecution stands or falls on its own merits and cannot be
allowed to draw strength from the weakness of the defense. 20 PROS. LASAM:chanrob1es virtual 1aw library
In other words, the credibility of the private complainant is
determinative of the outcome of these cases for rape. Her Q: While you were in your room on that time and date, do you
consistency on material points, or lack of it, that can sustain or remember of any incident that happened?
negate conviction, becomes the single most important matter in
inquiry. 21 A: Yes, sir.

After a thorough review, we find that the testimony of private Q: What was that incident?
complainant, Jona Grajo, sufficiently established all the elements
of rape committed under Article 266-A, paragraph (1) (a) of the A: While I was inside my room, I sensed that there was a person
Revised Penal Code, namely: a) that the offender, who must be inside my room and when I opened my eyes, I saw that he is my
a man, had carnal knowledge of a woman and (b) that such act brother-in-law.
is accomplished by using force or intimidation. 22 The gist of
private complainant’s testimony clearly shows that the appellant, Q: And that brother-in-law of yours is the person whom you
Emmanuel Aaron, forced himself on her at around 7:00 o’clock in pointed a while ago. Is that correct?
the morning on January 16, 1998. The sexual assault started on
the "papag" bed inside her room on the second floor of their A: Yes, sir.
apartment unit. After going on top of the private complainant, the
appellant succeeded in inserting his penis into her vagina after Q: How does he look when you saw him inside your room?
which he made pumping motions while poking a knife on her
neck. He then succeeded in inserting his penis into her vagina A: He was naked sitting beside me.25cralaw:red
two more times on the same occasion after transferring locations
inside the room, with the knife continuously poked on her neck. That the private complainant did not offer sustained resistance
despite having been ordered twice by the appellant to change
We also find no reason to disturb the assessment of the trial location inside the room can easily be explained by the fact that
court of private complainant’s credibility. Her testimony during the appellant was threatening to stab her if she resisted. The
the trial was completely credible as it was given in an honest and private complainant was obviously overwhelmed by intense fear
straightforward manner. As noted above, she gave a lucid and when she woke up with a knife pointed at her neck. The
consistent account of the commission of the crime and did not continuing intimidation of private complainant cowed her into
waver in pinpointing her brother-in-law, herein appellant, as the helpless submission to appellant’s lechery. She could only
perpetrator thereof. Likewise, her actuation after the incident express her disgust over the sexual attack of her brother-in-law
vividly portrayed a confused and traumatized woman typical of silently in tears. In this connection, it has been ruled that physical
victims of rape. Thus, after she broke free of the appellant on the resistance need not be established in rape when intimidation is
pretense that she urgently needed to relieve herself, the private used on the victim and the latter submits herself, against her will,
complainant quickly put on her panty and rushed to the street to the rapist’s embrace because of fear for her life and personal
77

safety. 26 WHEREFORE, the judgment of the court a quo convicting the


appellant Emmanuel Aaron of one count of rape and sentencing
The failure of the private complainant to confide the sexual him to suffer the penalty of reclusion perpetua and to pay the
assault to her sister who, appellant claimed, had arrived from the private complainant the amount of fifty thousand pesos
market before she (private complainant) went to report the (P50,000) as civil indemnity is hereby AFFIRMED with the
matter to the police is quite understandable and far from being MODIFICATION that said appellant shall pay an additional fifty
uncharacteristic of a rape victim, as what appellant would like to thousand pesos (P50,000) by way of moral
make it appear. The workings of the human mind which is under damages.chanrob1es virtua1 1aw 1ibrary
a great deal of emotional and psychological stress are
unpredictable and different people will react differently to a given SO ORDERED.
situation. 27 Besides, the private complainant did not want to
drag her sister into the controversy and hurt her in the process.
During the trial, the private complainant revealed that she kept
G.R. No. 190632, February 26, 2014
from her sister the previous sexual advances of the appellant in
order not to destroy their good relationship. Private complainant
explained that she did not leave the apartment despite the said PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, Plaintiff–
harassments of the appellant inasmuch as she had no other Appellee, v. MANOLITO LUCENA Y VELASQUEZ, ALIAS
place to go. However, she confided her ordeal to their landlady, a “MACHETE,” Accused–Appellant.
certain Elsa Navarro. At any rate, what is important is that the
private complainant reported the rape immediately to the police. DECISION

Admittedly, private complainant was having an affair with a


PEREZ, J.:
certain Bong Talastas 28 and that she was not innocent to the
ways of the world. However, such fact alone does not negate the
commission of rape by the appellant against her. Dra. Firmacion The subject of this appeal is the Decision1 dated 24 August 2009
testified that although the lacerations found in the private part of of the Court of Appeals in CA–G.R. CR–H.C. No. 03371 affirming
Jona Grajo were completely healed, such fact did not discount the Decision2 dated 30 April 2008 of the Regional Trial Court
the possibility that she was sexually molested immediately (RTC) of Parañaque City, Branch 260, in Criminal Cases Nos.
before she was examined on January 16, 1998. We emphasize 03–0763 to 03–0765, finding herein appellant Manolito Lucena y
that moral character is immaterial in the prosecution and Velasquez alias “Machete” guilty beyond reasonable doubt of
conviction of the offender in the crime of rape. The Court has three counts of rape, thereby sentencing him to suffer the
ruled time and again that even a prostitute can be a victim of penalty of reclusion perpetua for each count and ordering him to
rape 29 as the essence is the victim’s lack of consent to the pay AAA3 the amount of P50,000.00 as moral damages and
sexual act. P50,000.00 as civil indemnity also for each count.

Significantly, the appellant failed to advance any credible motive Three (3) similarly worded Informations,4 all dated 24 June 2003
that could have impelled the private complainant to testify falsely allege:
against him. 30 In a desperate attempt to avoid any
responsibility for his crime, however, the appellant theorizes that
the private complainant merely wanted to exact revenge from That on or about the 28th day of April 2003, in the City of
him for the embarrassment she experienced when he chanced Parañaque, Philippines, and within the jurisdiction of this
upon her clad merely in a panty inside her room. This alleged Honorable Court, the above–named [appellant], a Barangay
motive on the part of the private complainant is too shallow to Tanod Volunteer, who took advantage of his position to facilitate
merit even scant consideration from this Court. If appellant were the commission of the crime, by means of force, threat or
to be believed, would not private complainant have instead opted intimidation and with the use of a gun did then and there
to keep quiet about the incident to spare herself from further willfully, unlawfully and feloniously have carnal knowledge of
embarrassment? Common experience dictates that no woman, the complainant AAA, a minor, 17 years of age, against her
especially one of tender age, will concoct a rape complaint, allow will and consent. (Emphasis and italics supplied).
a gynecological examination and permit herself to be subjected
to public trial if she is not motivated solely by the desire to have The appellant, assisted by counsel de oficio, pleaded NOT
the culprit apprehended and punished. 31 Indeed, coming out in GUILTY to all the charges against him. 5Thereafter, the cases
the open with the accusation of sexual assault on her by her were jointly tried.
brother-in-law inevitably entailed risking her relationship with her
boyfriend, Bong Talastas, and with her sister. However, the rape The prosecution presented AAA, the victim herself; and Dr. Merle
simply proved too much for her to bear. Tan (Dr. Tan) of the Child Protection Unit, University of the
Philippines – Philippine General Hospital (UP–PGH), who
We agree with the trial court that the appellant should be examined the victim.
convicted of only one count of rape. It may appear from the facts
that the appellant thrice succeeded in inserting his penis into the
private part of Jona Grajo. However, the three penetrations The testimonies of the above–named prosecution witnesses
occurred during one continuing act of rape in which the appellant established that on 28 April 2003, at around 11:30 p.m., while
was obviously motivated by a single criminal intent. There is no AAA, who was then 17 years old, having been born on 10 July
indication in the records, as the trial court correctly observed, 1986, was walking and chatting with her friends along one of the
from which it can be inferred that the appellant decided to streets of San Dionisio, Parañaque City, two (2) barangay
commit those separate and distinct acts of sexual assault other tanods, one of whom is the appellant, approached and informed
than his lustful desire to change positions inside the room where them that they were being arrested for violating a city ordinance
the crime was committed. imposing curfew against minors. AAA’s companions, however,
managed to escape, thus, she alone was apprehended.6 AAA
Considering that the crime of rape was committed by the was then ordered by the barangay tanods to board the tricycle.
appellant with the use of a deadly weapon, the imposable Afraid that she might spend the night in jail, AAA pleaded with
penalty under Article 266-B is reclusion perpetua to death. In the them and protested that she did not commit any offense as she
absence of any mitigating nor aggravating circumstance, the trial was just chatting with her friends. AAA’s plea, however, remained
court correctly imposed the penalty of reclusion perpetua on the unheeded.7
appellant. She is also entitled to a civil indemnity of fifty
thousand pesos (P50,000). And due to the emotional distress AAA was then brought by the two (2) barangay tanods within the
suffered by the private complainant who was only nineteen years vicinity of the San Dionisio BarangayHall. Afterwards, one of
old at the time of the rape, she is also entitled to an award of them alighted from the tricycle and went inside
moral damages in the amount of fifty thousand pesos (P50,000). the barangay hall. The appellant, on the other hand, stayed in
32 the tricycle to guard AAA. After a while, the barangay tanod, the
one who went inside the barangay hall, returned. But, the
78

appellant told the former that he will just be the one to bring AAA On 28 April 2003, the appellant claimed that he was on duty as a
back to her house.8 radio operator at the barangay hall. His task as such was to
receive complaints from the residents of the barangay, as well as
But, instead of escorting AAA back to her house, the appellant to receive calls from fellow barangay officials who are in need of
brought her to Kabuboy Bridge in San Dionisio, Parañaque City. assistance. On the same day, he received a call from his
While on their way, the appellant threatened AAA that he would companion, who is also a barangay tanod. He cannot, however,
kill her once she resists or jumps off the tricycle. Upon arrival, recall any unusual incident that transpired on that day.15
the appellant ordered AAA to alight from the tricycle. AAA asked
the appellant what he would do with her but the former did not The appellant admitted that he knew AAA as the one who lodged
respond. The appellant then took out the backseat of the tricycle a complaint against him but he denied that he knew her
and positioned it in a grassy area. He subsequently pointed a personally. He also vehemently denied the following: (1) that he
gun at AAA and commanded her to lie down and to take off her raped AAA; (2) that he was one of those barangay tanods who
clothes. The appellant later put the gun down on the ground and apprehended AAA for violating the curfew ordinance of
inserted his penis into AAA’s vagina despite the latter’s plea not their barangay; and (3) that he was the one driving the tricycle in
to rape her. Satisfied, the appellant stopped. But, after a short going to the barangay hall. Instead, the appellant claimed that
while, or after about five (5) minutes, the appellant, once again, after 12:00 midnight of 28 April 2003, he went home already. In
inserted his penis into AAA’s vagina. Thereafter, he stopped. On fact, he was shocked when he was arrested on 25 September
the third time, the appellant inserted again his penis into AAA’s 2003 as he did not commit any crime.16
vagina. Fulfilling his bestial desire, the appellant stopped and
finally ordered AAA to dress up. The appellant even threatened In its Decision dated 30 April 2008, the trial court, giving
AAA that he would kill her should she tell anyone about what credence to the categorical, straightforward and positive
happened between them.9 testimony of AAA, coupled with the medical findings of sexual
abuse, convicted the appellant of three (3) counts of rape as
The appellant, thereafter, directed AAA to board the tricycle. He defined and penalized under paragraph 1(a) of Article 266–A, in
then brought AAA in front of a school in Parañaque City. But, relation to Article 266–B, of the Revised Penal Code of the
before allowing AAA to get off, the appellant repeated his threat Philippines, as amended. The trial court, thus, decreed:
to kill her should she tell anyone about the incident.10
WHEREFORE, the Court finds the [herein appellant] MANOLITO
The following day, AAA took the courage to seek the assistance LUCENA y VELASQUEZ alias MACHETE, GUILTY beyond
of their barangay kagawad, who simply advised her to just reasonable doubt of three (3) counts of Rape (under Art. 266–a
proceed to the barangay hall to lodge her complaint against the par. 1(a) in relation to Art. 266–B of the RPC as amended by
appellant. AAA and her mother subsequently went to PGH, RA 8353)and is hereby sentenced to suffer the penalty
where she was subjected to physical examination by Dr. of reclusion perpetua for each count of Rape. In addition, the
Tan,11which resulted in the following findings: [appellant] is ordered to pay [AAA] the amount of P50,000.00 as
moral damages and P50,000.00 as civil indemnity for each
count.17 (Emphasis and italics theirs).
Tanner Stage 3, healing laceration[s] 3 and 5 o’clock
area with petechiae, fresh laceration at 9 o’clock area
HYMEN The appellant appealed18 the trial court’s Decision to the Court of
with eccymosi at 8–10 o’clock area, Type of Hymen:
Crescentic Appeals with the following assignment of errors:

xxx I.

Perianal Skin: fresh laceration[s] at 12 THE TRIAL COURT GRAVELY ERRED IN CONVICTING THE
ANAL EXAMINATION and 1 o’clock area. No evident injury at [HEREIN APPELLANT] OF RAPE DESPITE THE
the time of examination. PROSECUTION’S FAILURE TO PROVE THE ELEMENT OF
FORCE AND INTIMIDATION.
xxx
II.
IMPRESSIONS
Disclosure of sexual abuse. GRANTING, ARGUENDO, THAT THE [APPELLANT]
Genital findings show clear Evidence Of Blunt Force Or COMMITTED THE CRIME CHARGED, THE TRIAL COURT
Penetrating Trauma.12 (Emphasis supplied). GRAVELY ERRED IN CONVICTING HIM OF THREE (3)
COUNTS OF RAPE.19
AAA also went to the Coastal Road Police Headquarters, where
she executed her sworn statement accusing the appellant of After a thorough study of the records, the Court of Appeals
rape. AAA was able to identify the appellant as her assailant rendered its now assailed Decision dated 24 August 2009
because the former was wearing a jacket emblazoned with sustaining appellant’s conviction for three (3) counts of rape, as
“Barangay Police,” as well as a Barangay Identification Card, at well as the damages awarded to AAA. In doing so, the Court of
the time of the incident.13 Appeals explained that the facts revealed that the appellant
succeeded thrice in inserting his penis into AAA’s vagina. The
said three (3) penetrations happened one after another at an
The appellant and Rodel Corpuz (Corpuz) took the witness stand interval of five (5) minutes, wherein the appellant would take a
for the defense. rest after satiating his lust and after regaining his strength would
again rape AAA. Undoubtedly, the appellant decided to commit
In the course of Corpuz’s direct examination, however, the those separate and distinct acts of sexual assault on AAA. Thus,
parties made the following stipulations: (1) that the [herein his conviction for three (3) counts of rape is irrefutable.20
appellant] was the assigned barangay radio operator on that
date, [28 April 2003], and he stayed at the barangay hall from Hence, this appeal.21
12:00 midnight to 5:00 a.m.; (2) that the witness was there up to
12:00 midnight, but at about past 12:00, he left and returned
after two (2) hours, at 2:00 o’clock a.m.; and (3) that when he Both parties in their manifestations22 before this Court adopted
woke up at 5:00 o’clock in the morning, the [appellant] was still their respective appeal briefs23 filed with the Court of Appeals in
there. With these stipulations, Corpuz’s testimony was dispensed lieu of Supplemental Briefs.
with.14
In his Brief, the appellant contends that the prosecution failed to
The appellant, for his part, could only muster the defenses of prove that force or intimidation attended the commission of rape.
denial and alibi. He, thus, offered a different version of the story. Records revealed that AAA did not even attempt to resist his
79

alleged sexual advances over her person. Instead, AAA opted to Whenever the rape is committed with the use of a deadly
remain passive throughout her ordeal despite the fact that during weapon or by two or more persons, the penalty shall
the three (3) episodes of their sexual intercourse he was be reclusion perpetua to death. (Emphasis supplied).
unarmed and she, thus, had all the opportunity to escape, which
she never did. These reactions of AAA were contrary to human Certainly, carnal knowledge of a woman under any of the
experience, thus, cast serious doubts on the veracity of her following instances constitutes rape: (1) when force or
testimony and on her credibility as a witness. intimidation is used; (2) when the woman is deprived of reason
or is otherwise unconscious; and (3) when she is under twelve
The appellant similarly argues that the result of AAA’s medical (12) years of age.26
examination is quite disturbing as it appears that her anal orifice
was also penetrated by a hard object though nothing was said to The force and violence required in rape cases is relative and
this effect in her testimony. need not be overpowering or irresistible when applied. For rape
to exist, it is not necessary that the force or intimidation be so
The appellant likewise avers that he cannot be convicted of three great or be of such character as could not be resisted – it is
counts of rape. The intervening period of five (5) minutes only necessary that the force or intimidation be sufficient to
between each penetration does not necessarily prove that he consummate the purpose which the accused had in
decided to commit three separate acts of rape. He maintains that mind.27 Further, it should be viewed from the perception and
what is of prime importance is that he was motivated by a single judgment of the victim at the time of the commission of the
criminal intent. crime. What is vital is that the force or intimidation be of
such degree as to cow the unprotected and vulnerable
With the foregoing, the appellant believes that his guilt was not victim into submission. Force is sufficient if it produces fear
proven beyond reasonable doubt; hence, his acquittal is in the victim, such as when the latter is threatened with
inevitable. death.28

This Court holds otherwise. The conviction of the appellant, thus, In the case at bench, as can be gleaned from the transcript of
stands but the damages awarded in favor AAA must be modified. stenographic notes and as observed by the trial court, which the
Court of Appeals sustained, AAA’s categorical, straightforward
and positive testimony revealed that the appellant was armed
Primarily, in reviewing rape cases, this Court is guided with three with a gun and the same was pointed at her while she was
settled principles: (1) an accusation of rape can be made with ordered to lie down and to take off her clothes, to which she
facility and while the accusation is difficult to prove, it is even acceded because of fear for her life and personal safety. The
more difficult for the person accused, although innocent, to appellant then put the gun down on the ground and successfully
disprove; (2) considering the intrinsic nature of the crime, only inserted his penis into AAA’s vagina, not only once but thrice.
two persons being usually involved, the testimony of the This happened despite AAA’s plea not to rape her. And, after
complainant should be scrutinized with great caution; and (3) the satisfying his lust, the appellant threatened AAA that he would kill
evidence for the prosecution must stand or fall on its own merit, her should she tell anyone about the incident. This same threat
and cannot be allowed to draw strength from the weakness of of killing AAA was first made by the appellant while the former
the evidence for the defense.24 was still inside the tricycle on their way to Kabuboy Bridge.29 It
cannot be denied, therefore, that force and intimidation were
Rape is a serious transgression with grave consequences both employed by the appellant upon AAA in order to achieve his
for the accused and the complainant. Following the above depraved desires.
principles, this Court is duty–bound to conduct a thorough and
exhaustive evaluation of a judgment of conviction for rape.25 While it is true that the appellant had already put the gun down
on the ground the moment he inserted his penis into AAA’s
After a careful scrutiny of the entire records, however, this Court vagina and was actually unarmed on those three (3) episodes of
finds no justifiable reason to reverse the rulings of the lower sexual intercourse, the same does not necessarily take away the
courts. fear of being killed that had already been instilled in the mind of
AAA. Emphasis must be given to the fact that the gun was still
All the Informations in this case charged the appellant with rape within appellant’s reach, therefore, he could still make good of
under paragraph 1(a), Article 266–A, in relation to paragraph 2, his threat on AAA at anytime the latter would show any
Article 266–B, of the Revised Penal Code, as amended. These resistance to his evil desires. AAA’s lack of physical resistance,
provisions specifically state: therefore, is understandable and would not in any way discredit
her testimony.

ART. 266–A. Rape; When and How Committed. – Rape is


committed – It must be borne in mind that when a rape victim becomes
paralyzed with fear, she cannot be expected to think and act
coherently. Further, as has been consistently held by this
1) By a man who shall have carnal knowledge of a woman under Court, physical resistance is not an essential element of
any of the following circumstances: rape and need not be established when intimidation is exercised
upon the victim, and, the latter submits herself, against her will,
a) Through force, threat or intimidation; to the rapist’s embrace because of fear for her life and personal
safety. The victim’s failure to shout or offer tenacious resistance
did not make voluntary her submission to the criminal acts of her
b) When the offended party is deprived of reason or otherwise
aggressor. It bears stressing that not every rape victim can be
unconscious;
expected to act with reason or in conformity with the usual
expectations of everyone. The workings of a human mind placed
c) By means of fraudulent machination or grave abuse of under emotional stress are unpredictable; people react
authority; and d) When the offended party is under twelve (12) differently. Some may shout, some may faint, while others may
years of age or is demented, even though none of the be shocked into insensibility.30
circumstances mentioned above be present.
In his attempt to ruin AAA’s credibility in order to exculpate
xxxx himself from all the charges, the appellant puts stress on the
portion of the result of AAA’s medical examination disclosing that
ART. 266–B. Penalties. – Rape under paragraph 1 of the next even her anal orifice was also penetrated by a hard object, which
preceding article shall be punished by reclusion perpetua. she never mentioned in her testimony.

To the mind of this Court, such argument is flimsy and totally


misplaced. It would not even work to appellant’s advantage and
80

would not in any way cast doubt on the veracity of AAA’s From these sets of facts, this Court convicted the accused
testimony. As this Court has previously stated, a medical therein for only one count of rape despite the three successful
examination and a medical certificate, albeit corroborative of the penetrations because there is no indication in the records from
commission of rape, are not indispensable to a successful which it can be inferred that the accused decided to commit
prosecution for rape.31 Moreover, even though AAA made no those separate and distinct acts of sexual assault other than his
mention of any anal penetration, such omission would not lustful desire to change positions inside the room where the
change the fact that she was, indeed, raped by the appellant. As crime was committed. This Court, thus, viewed that the three
succinctly found by both lower courts, AAA categorically, penetrations occurred during one continuing act of rape in which
straightforwardly, clearly and positively narrated her harrowing the accused was obviously motivated by a single criminal intent.
experience in the hands of the appellant. She recounted in detail
how the appellant took advantage of her by bringing her The circumstances in the present case, however, are far different
to Kabuboy Bridge, where nobody was present; commanding her from the Aaron Case. Here, we quote with approval the
to lie down and undress herself at a point of a gun; and observations of the Court of Appeals, which affirmed that of the
successfully inserting his penis into her vagina, not only once but trial court, to wit:
thrice. AAA stated that after the first penetration the appellant
stopped. After about five minutes, however, the appellant, once
again, inserted his penis into her vagina. Thereafter, the We agree with the trial court that the [herein appellant] should be
appellant stopped. For the third and last time, the appellant convicted of three (3) counts of rape. It appears from the facts
again inserted his penis into her vagina. This narration was that the [appellant] thrice succeeded in inserting his penis into
consistent with the rest of the medical findings showing fresh the private part of [AAA]. The three (3) penetrations occurred
hymenal lacerations on AAA’s vagina, which according to Dr. Tan one after the other at an interval of five (5) minutes wherein
is a clear evidence of “blunt force or penetrating trauma” – a the [appellant] would rest after satiating his lust upon his
disclosure of sexual abuse. victim and, after he has regained his strength, he would
again rape [AAA]. Hence, it can be clearly inferred from the
foregoing that when the [appellant] decided to commit those
For his ultimate defense, the appellant puts forward denial separate and distinct acts of sexual assault upon [AAA], he
and alibi. Notably, these defenses are totally inconsistent with his was not motivated by a single impulse[,] but rather by
line of argument that the rape was committed without force or several criminal intent. Hence, his conviction for three (3)
intimidation thereby implying that the sexual intercourse between counts of rape is indubitable.36 (Emphasis supplied).
him and AAA was consensual.
This Court sustains the findings of both lower courts that, indeed,
Time and again, this Court has viewed denial and alibi as the three insertions into AAA were in satiation of successive but
inherently weak defenses, unless supported by clear and distinct criminal carnality. Therefore, the appellant’s conviction for
convincing evidence, the same cannot prevail over the positive three counts of rape is proper.
declarations of the victim who, in a simple and straightforward
manner, convincingly identified the appellant as the defiler of her
chastity.32 Simply put, the positive assertions of AAA that he As to penalty. The second paragraph of Art. 266–B of the
raped her are entitled to greater weight. While denial Revised Penal Code, as amended, provides that “[w]henever the
and alibi are legitimate defenses in rape cases, bare assertions rape is committed with the use of a deadly weapon x x x the
to this effect cannot overcome the categorical testimony of the penalty shall be reclusion perpetua to death.” As it was properly
victim,33 as in this case. alleged and proved that the appellant used a gun in order to
consummate his evil desires, thus, both lower courts correctly
imposed upon him the penalty of reclusion perpetua for each
Also, appellant’s alibi that on the night the rape incident count of rape.
happened, he was at the barangay hall doing his job as radio
operator and at 12:00 midnight he already went home, failed to
sufficiently establish that it was physically impossible for him to As to damages. Civil indemnity, which is mandatory in a finding
be at the scene of the crime when it was committed. Moreover, of rape is distinct from and should not be denominated as moral
the corroborating testimony of defense witness Corpuz that the damages which are based on different jural foundations and
appellant left at about past 12:00 midnight, almost the same time assessed by the court in the exercise of sound discretion.37 The
the rape incident happened, and then returned after two (2) award of moral damages, on the other hand, is automatically
hours, even bolster the possibility of the appellant’s presence at granted in rape cases without need of further proof other than
the scene of the crime. the commission of the crime because it is assumed that a rape
victim has actually suffered moral injuries entitling her to such
award.38 Hence, this Court upholds the P50,000.00 civil
This Court also notes that the appellant failed to show any ill– indemnity and P50,000.00 moral damages, for each count of
motive on the part of AAA to testify falsely against him. This rape, that were awarded by both lower courts in favor of AAA.
bolsters the veracity of AAA’s accusation since no woman would
concoct a tale that would tarnish her reputation, bring humiliation
and disgrace to herself and her family, and submit herself to the In addition, this Court deems it proper to award exemplary
rigors, shame, and stigma attendant to the prosecution of rape, damages in favor of AAA. The award of exemplary damages is
unless she is motivated by her quest to seek justice for the crime justified under Article 2230 of the Civil Code if there is an
committed against her.34 aggravating circumstance, whether ordinary or qualifying.39 In
this case, since the qualifying circumstance of the use of a
deadly weapon was present in the commission of the crime,
In light of the foregoing, it is beyond any cavil of doubt that the exemplary damages in the amount of P30,000.00, for each count
appellant’s guilt for the crime of rape has been proven beyond of rape, is awarded in favor of AAA. Moreover, in line with recent
reasonable doubt. jurisprudence, the interest at the rate of 6% per annum shall be
imposed on all damages awarded from the date of the finality of
As to the number of rapes committed. The appellant, this judgment until fully paid.40
citing People v. Aaron (Aaron Case),35 insists that he cannot be
convicted of three (3) counts of rape despite the three (3) WHEREFORE, premises considered, the Decision of the Court
penetrations because he was motivated by a single criminal of Appeals in CA–G.R. CR–H.C. No. 03371 dated 24 August
intent. This Court finds this contention fallacious. 2009 finding herein appellant guilty beyond reasonable doubt of
three counts of rape is hereby AFFIRMED with
In the Aaron Case, the accused inserted his penis into the the MODIFICATIONS that: (1) the exemplary damages in the
victim’s vagina; he then withdrew it and ordered the latter to lie amount of P30,000.00, for each count of rape, is awarded in
down on the floor and, for the second time, he inserted again his favor of AAA; and (2) the appellant is ordered to pay AAA the
penis into the victim’s vagina; the accused, thereafter, stood up interest on all damages at the legal rate of 6% per annum from
and commanded the victim to lie near the headboard of the the date of finality of this judgment.
makeshift bed and, for the third time, he inserted again his penis
into the victim’s vagina and continued making pumping motions. SO ORDERED.
81

G.R. No. 196315, October 22, 2014 Study upon AAA in relation to the incident of sexual abuse at the
hands of the accused.12 NCMH Psychologist Susan
PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, Plaintiff- Sabado was presented as a prosecution witness, but her
Appellee, v. LEONARDO CATAYTAY Y SILVANO, Accused- testimony was dispensed with when the defense agreed to a
Appellant. stipulation regarding her expertise and that the tests conducted
on AAA affirmed that the latter had a mental capacity of a seven-
year-old child.13chanroblesvirtuallawlibrary
DECISION
Police Chief Inspector (PC/Insp.) Bonnie Chua, the medico-
LEONARDO-DE CASTRO, J.: legal officer who examined AAA on September 8, 2003 was
likewise presented as a prosecution witness. The defense
This is an Appeal1 from the Decision2 of the Court of Appeals in agreed to a stipulation that the findings of the examination were
CA-G.R. CR No. 32275 dated August 11, 2010 affirming the consistent with recent sexual
conviction of accused-appellant Leonardo Cataytay y Silvano for intercourse.14chanroblesvirtuallawlibrary
the crime of rape.
For the defense, accused-appellant testified that on September
Accused-appellant Cataytay was charged of said crime in an 7, 2003, at around 7:00 p.m., he was in his house together with
Information dated September 9, 2003:chanroblesvirtuallawlibrary his brother, feeding his four-year-old daughter. He then went out
and proceeded to a videoke bar, which was around 20 meters
from his house.15 He stayed at the videoke bar for less than 15
That on or about the 07 th day of September 2003, in the City of minutes, as barangay officers suddenly arrived and arrested
Mandaluyong, Philippines, a place within the jurisdiction of this him. Upon asking why he was being arrested, the officers told
Honorable Court, the above-named accused, with lewd him that he was the suspect in the rape of AAA. He was brought
designs[,] and by means of force and intimidation, did, then and to the Barangay Hall, where he denied the accusations against
there willfully, unlawfully, and feloniously have carnal knowledge him. He estimated that the house of BBB was more or less 50
[of AAA],3 19 years of age but with a mental age of a 5 year old, meters away from his house,16 and that it would take more or
hence, a retardate, or demented, which is known to accused at less a one minute walk from the videoke bar to the house of
the time of the commission of the offense, against her will and AAA.17 Accused-appellant admitted that by merely looking at
consent and to her damage and prejudice.4 AAA, he could tell that she has a mental
disability.18chanroblesvirtuallawlibrary
Accused-appellant Cataytay entered a plea of not guilty at his
arraignment on October 3, 2003. Trial thereafter ensued. Accused-appellant’s brother, Jose Fresco Cataytay (Jose),
testified that at 6:30 p.m. of September 7, 2003, accused-
BBB (AAA’s mother) testified that she knew accused-appellant appellant was inside their house feeding his daughter. At around
Cataytay as her neighbor in their compound in Mandaluyong 7:00 p.m., accused-appellant told Jose that he will go to
City. Accused-appellant was a shoe repairman who had a shop the videoke bar, which was around 30 meters away from their
six houses away from BBB’s house.5chanroblesvirtuallawlibrary house. Accused-appellant stayed in the videoke bar for 5 to 10
minutes, then went back to their house and watched television.
On September 7, 2003, at around 6:30 p.m., BBB left AAA in Accused-appellant was arrested that night within the vicinity of
their house to look for BBB’s youngest daughter. Thirty minutes their house by the barangay tanods. He estimated that AAA’s
later, when she reached the bridge near Block 37, her neighbor, house is 20 to 30 meters away from the videoke bar, and that it
Lito, told her that there was a problem, and brought her to would take less than five minutes to reach the house of AAA
the barangay outpost. AAA and the accused-appellant were from the videoke bar.19chanroblesvirtuallawlibrary
already at the outpost. Lito told the persons at the outpost that
she was the mother of the victim. When BBB saw AAA, the latter Alicia Panaguitol (Alicia), a neighbor of AAA and accused-
told her, “Mommy, ni-rape po ako.” BBB asked her who raped appellant, testified that she lives two meters away from AAA’s
her. AAA responded by pointing to accused-appellant. During house and 60 meters away from that of accused-appellant. She
the interviews made by the barangay officials, AAA narrated how was inside her house at around 7:00 p.m. of September 7, 2003,
she was raped by accused-appellant, which ended when a during which time she heard AAA shouting that she was raped.
certain “Mimi” knocked at the door. When accused-appellant She asked AAA who raped her. AAA replied “Pilay,” apparently
answered the knock, Mimi told the former that she will shout if he referring to their neighbor who was called Jun Pilay. Alicia saw
does not leave the house. AAA went out of the house and Jun Pilay run from AAA’s house towards a dark
sought help from their neighbors. One of their neighbors, area.20chanroblesvirtuallawlibrary
Amelita Morante, called the barangay officials at the
outpost.6chanroblesvirtuallawlibrary On February 5, 2009, the RTC rendered its Judgment finding
accused-appellant guilty as charged, and disposing of the case
BBB identified a Psychological Evaluation Report from the as follows:chanroblesvirtuallawlibrary
Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) dated
May 25, 1999, which was conducted in connection with another
rape case. The report stated that AAA had the mental capacity WHEREFORE, foregoing premises considered, accused
of an eight-year-old child.7 BBB also identified AAA’s birth LEONARDO CATAYTAY y SILVANO is hereby found GUILTY
certificate which showed that she was biologically 19 years old at beyond reasonable doubt for the crime of rape against one
the time of the incident. 8chanroblesvirtuallawlibrary [AAA] defined and penalized under Article 266-A, paragraph 1 of
the Revised Penal Code in relation to Article 266-B paragraph 10
On cross-examination, BBB confirmed that AAA was the victim in of the same Code.
a rape case in 1999 against a certain Norberto Lerit. BBB
admitted that she did not personally witness the alleged rape As a consequence thereof, accused LEONARDO CATAYTAY y
committed by the accused-appellant.9chanroblesvirtuallawlibrary SILVANO is hereby sentenced to suffer the penalty of
imprisonment of from TWENTY YEARS (20) and ONE (1) DAY
When AAA appeared as the second witness for the prosecution, to FORTY (40) YEARS of reclusion perpetua.
the prosecution manifested that by merely looking at her, it was
apparent that she was mentally retardate.10 AAA, who was Further, accused LEONARDO CATAYTAY y SILVANO is hereby
crying while being asked questions, testified that she was raped ordered to indemnify the victim [AAA], the amount of SEVENTY
by accused-appellant by inserting his penis into her, despite her FIVE THOUSAND PESOS (P75,000.00) as and by way of moral
protestations. After the deed, she was given money by accused- damages and SEVENTY FIVE THOUSAND PESOS
appellant. She knew the accused-appellant before the incident (P75,000.00) by way of exemplary damages.
as a shoe repairman.11chanroblesvirtuallawlibrary
Finally, the period of detention of accused LEONARDO
DSWD Social Worker Arlene Gampal testified that she referred CATAYTAY y SILVANO at the Mandaluyong City Jail is hereby
AAA to the National Center for Mental Health (NCMH) for fully credited to his account.21ChanRoblesVirtualawlibrary
psychological examination. She also conducted a Social Case
82

ginawa niya sa’yo?


The case was elevated to the Court of Appeals, where it was A- Ni-rape po ako.
docketed as CA-G.R. CR No. 32275. On August 11, 2010, the Q- Ilang beses ka niya ni-rape?
Court of Appeals rendered the assailed Decision, the dispositive A- Isa lang po.
portion of which reads:chanroblesvirtuallawlibrary Q- Papaano ka niya ni-rape?
A- Pinasok niya ‘yung ari niya sa akin.
WHEREFORE, in the light of the foregoing, the instant appeal Q- Anong sinabi mo sa kanya ‘nung ni-rape ka niya, anong
is DENIED. The decision appealed from is AFFIRMED with the sinabi mo kay Leonardo?
MODIFICATIONS that an additional award of P75,000.00 as civil A- Ayaw ko na po.
indemnity is granted to the victim and the award of exemplary Q- Anong sinabi naman ni Leonardo habang nire-rape ka
damages of P75,000.00 is reduced to P30,000.00. The penalty niya?
of imprisonment to be served is simply reclusion A- Wag daw po ako maingay.
perpetua.22ChanRoblesVirtualawlibrary Q- Kasi pag maingay ka, ano daw ang gagawin sa’yo?
A- Uulitin daw niya po.
Hence, this appeal, where accused-appellant Cataytay adopted Q- Anong sinabi ni Leonardo sa’yo pagkatapos ka niyang
his Appellant’s Brief with the Court of Appeals, which contained ni-rape, [AAA]? May sinabi sa’yo pagkatapos ka niya ni-
the following assignment of errors:chanroblesvirtuallawlibrary rape? Meron o wala?
A- Wala po.
I Q- May binigay sya sa’yo?
A- Opo.
THE COURT A QUO GRAVELY ERRED IN CONVICTING THE Q- Anong binigay niya? Punasan mo ang luha mo.
ACCUSED-APPELLANT DESPITE THE PROSECUTION’S A- Pera po.
FAILURE TO PROVE HIS GUILT BEYOND REASONABLE Q- Alam mo kung magkano?
DOUBT. A- Hindi po.27

AAA’s mental condition may have prevented her from delving


II
into the specifics of the assault in her testimony almost three
years later, unlike the way she narrated the same when she was
THE COURT A QUO GRAVELY ERRED IN CONVICTING THE
asked at the barangay outpost merely minutes after the incident.
ACCUSED-APPELLANT DESPITE THE FACT THAT HE WAS
However, as we have ruled in a litany of cases, when a woman,
ILLEGALLY ARRESTED.23ChanRoblesVirtualawlibrary
more so if she is a minor, says she has been raped, she says, in
effect, all that is necessary to prove that rape was committed.
In his appellant’s brief, accused-appellant claims that BBB’s
Youth and, as is more applicable in the case at bar, immaturity
testimony concerning the details of the commission of the rape
are generally badges of truth.28 Furthermore, the report of
as narrated by AAA is hearsay and therefore has no probative
PC/Insp. Chua that the findings of the physical examination were
value. Accused-appellant also points out that the Psychological
consistent with recent sexual intercourse, provide additional
Evaluation Report dated May 25, 1999 and Psychological Report
corroboration to the testimonies of AAA and BBB. It should be
dated June 29, 2009 illustrate that AAA can be easily influenced.
noted that this report was stipulated upon by the prosecution and
the defense.
At the outset, we agree with accused-appellant that the details
concerning the manner of the commission of the rape, which
We have pronounced time and again that both denial and alibi
was merely narrated by AAA at the barangay outpost, is hearsay
are inherently weak defenses which cannot prevail over the
and cannot be considered by this Court. A witness can testify
positive and credible testimony of the prosecution witness that
only on the facts that she knows of his own personal knowledge,
the accused committed the crime. Thus, as between a
or more precisely, those which are derived from her own
categorical testimony which has a ring of truth on one hand, and
perception.24 A witness may not testify on what she merely
a mere denial and alibi on the other, the former is generally held
learned, read or heard from others because such testimony is
to prevail.29 For the defense of alibi to prosper, it must be
considered hearsay and may not be received as proof of the
sufficiently convincing as to preclude any doubt on the physical
truth of what she has learned, read or
impossibility of the presence of the accused at the locus
heard.25cralawredchanroblesvirtuallawlibrary
criminis or its immediate vicinity at the time of the incident. 30 In
the case at bar, accused-appellant and his brother, second
Notwithstanding the inadmissibility of the details of the rape
defense witness Jose, claim that the former was taking care of
which BBB merely heard from AAA’s narration, we nevertheless
his daughter in his house at around 7:00 p.m. of September 7,
find no reason to disturb the findings of fact of the trial court.
2003. He then went out and proceeded to a videoke bar, which
Despite lacking certain details concerning the manner in which
was merely 20 meters away from his house. Accused-appellant
AAA was allegedly raped, the trial court, taking into consideration
and his brother admitted that their house was merely 50 meters
the mental incapacity of AAA and qualifying her to be a child
away, or around a one-minute walk, from the house of AAA,
witness,26 found her testimony to be credible and
where the alleged incident occurred. Accused-appellant was
convincing:chanroblesvirtuallawlibrary
therefore clearly in the immediate vicinity of the locus criminis at
the time of the commission of the crime, and thus accused-
Q- Uulitin ko sa iyo ‘yung unang tinanong ko sa’yo ha, bakit appellant’s defense of alibi must fail.
ka nandito sa office ni Judge, para ano?
A- Para magsumbong. Other than alibi and denial, accused-appellant presented the
Q- Sinong isusumbong mo? testimony of Alicia, a neighbor of AAA and accused-appellant, to
A- Leonardo Cataytay. prove that another person raped AAA. However, the record is
INTERPRETER: clear that AAA positively identified accused-appellant as the
Witness at this moment is now crying. culprit both at the barangay outpost minutes after the incident,
Q- Nandito ba si Leonardo Cataytay, [AAA], nandito ba siya and in open court. It is furthermore axiomatic that when it comes
ngayon sa office ni Judge? Tingin ka sa office ni Judge to evaluating the credibility of the testimonies of the witnesses,
kung nandito ngayon si Leonardo, sabi mo isusumbong great respect is accorded to the findings of the trial judge who is
mo siya kay Judge, diba? in a better position to observe the demeanor, facial expression,
COURT: and manner of testifying of witnesses, and to decide who among
Ituro mo nga kung nandiyan siya, sige. them is telling the truth.31 The trial court, which was able to
INTERPRETER: carefully observe the testimony of Alicia, was not adequately
Witness pointed to the male person seated in the first convinced by her allegations.
row of the gallery, wearing white t-shirt, who when
asked to identify himself, answered to the name of To recall, the Information charged accused-appellant of
LEONARDO CATAYTAY Y SILVANO. committing the following act: “by means of force and intimidation,
PROS. LAZARO: did, then and there willfully, unlawfully, and feloniously have
Q- [AAA], itinuro mo si Leonardo, sabi mo kanina carnal knowledge [of AAA], 19 years of age but with a mental
isusumbong mo siya, bakit mo siya isusumbong, anong
83

age of a 5 year old, hence, a retardate, or demented, which is award of P75,000.00 as civil indemnity and reducing the award
known to accused at the time of the commission of the offense, of exemplary damages to P30,000.00. In accordance, however,
against her will and consent and to her damage and to People v. Lumaho,38 where the penalty for the crime
prejudice.”32 The Information, as worded, can conceivably committed is death which cannot be imposed because of
comprehend rape under either paragraph 1(b) or 1(d) of Article Republic Act No. 9346, we increase the amounts of indemnity
266-A of the Revised Penal Code, which and damages to be imposed as follows: P100,000.00 as civil
provides:chanroblesvirtuallawlibrary indemnity; P100,000.00 as moral damages; and P100,000.00 as
exemplary damages. In addition, we impose 6% interest per
Article 266-A. Rape; When and How Committed. — Rape is annum from finality of judgment until fully
committed — paid.39chanroblesvirtuallawlibrary

1) By a man who shall have carnal knowledge of a woman under WHEREFORE, the present appeal is DENIED. The Decision of
any of the following circumstances:cralawlawlibrary the Court of Appeals in CA-G.R. CR No. 32275 dated August 11,
2010 is hereby AFFIRMED with MODIFICATION increasing the
a) Through force, threat or intimidation;chanrobleslaw amounts of indemnity and damages to be imposed as follows:
P100,000.00 as civil indemnity; P100,000.00 as moral damages;
b) When the offended party is deprived of reason or is and P100,000.00 as exemplary damages. All amounts are
otherwise unconscious;chanrobleslaw furthermore subject to interest at the rate of 6% per annum from
the date of finality of this judgment until fully paid.
c) By means of fraudulent machination or grave abuse of
authority;chanrobleslaw SO ORDERED.

d) When the offended party is under twelve (12) years of age MARITAL RAPE
or is demented, even though none of the circumstances
mentioned above be present. (Emphasis supplied)
G.R. No. 187495 April 21, 2014
In People v. Caoile,33 we differentiated the terms “deprived of
reason” and “demented,” as follows:chanroblesvirtuallawlibrary
PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, Plaintiff-Appellee,
vs.
The term demented refers to a person who has dementia, which EDGAR JUMAWAN, Accused-Appellant.
is a condition of deteriorated mentality, characterized by marked
decline from the individual's former intellectual level and often by
emotional apathy, madness, or insanity. On the other hand, the DECISION
phrase deprived of reason under paragraph 1 (b) has been
interpreted to include those suffering from mental abnormality, "Among the duties assumed by the husband are his duties to
deficiency, or retardation. Thus, AAA, who was clinically love, cherish and protect his wife, to give her a home, to provide
diagnosed to be a mental retardate, can be properly classified as her with the comforts and the necessities of life within his means,
a person who is “deprived of reason,” and not one who is to treat her kindly and not cruelly or inhumanely. He is bound to
“demented.” honor her x x x; it is his duty not only to maintain and support
her, but also to protect her from oppression and wrong."1
In the case at bar, AAA was clinically diagnosed to have mental
retardation with the mental capacity of a seven-year old child.34
REYES, J.:
The prosecution and the defense agreed to stipulate on the
conclusion of the psychologist that the “mental age of the victim
whose chronological age at the time of the commission of the Husbands do not have property rights over their wives' bodies.
offense is nineteen (19) years old x x x is that of a seven (7) Sexual intercourse, albeit within the realm of marriage, if not
year old child.”35 Accused-appellant is therefore criminally liable consensual, is rape. This is the clear State policy expressly
for rape under paragraph 1(b) of Article 266-A of the Revised legislated in Section 266-A of the Revised Penal Code (RPC), as
Penal Code. The appropriate penalty is provided for by Article amended by Republic Act (R.A.) No. 8353 or the Anti-Rape Law
266-B, which relevantly provides:chanroblesvirtuallawlibrary of 1997.

The death penalty shall also be imposed if the crime of rape is The Case
committed with any of the following aggravating/qualifying
circumstances:cralawlawlibrary This is an automatic review 2 of the Decision3 dated July 9, 2008
of the Court of Appeals (CA) in CA-G.R. CR-HC No. 00353,
x x x x which affirmed the Judgment4 dated April 1, 2002 of the Regional
Trial Court (RTC) of Cagayan de Oro City, Branch 19, in Criminal
10. When the offender knew of the mental disability, emotional Case Nos. 99-668 and 99-669 convicting him to suffer the
disorder and/or physical handicap of the offended party at the penalty of reclusion perpetua for each count.
time of the commission of the crime.

Since the accused-appellant’s knowledge of AAA’s mental The Facts


retardation was alleged in the Information and admitted by the
former during the trial, the above special qualifying circumstance Accused-appellant and his wife, KKK,5 were married on October
is applicable, and the penalty of death should have been 18, 1975. They Ii ved together since then and raised their four (4)
imposed. With the passage, however, of Republic Act No. children6 as they put up several businesses over the years.
934636prohibiting the imposition of the death penalty, the penalty
of reclusion perpetua shall instead be imposed. On February 19, 1999, KKK executed a Complaint-
Affidavit,7 alleging that her husband, the accused-appellant,
The RTC sentenced accused-appellant to suffer the penalty of raped her at 3 :00 a.m. of December 3, 1998 at their residence in
imprisonment of twenty years and one day to forty years Phase 2, Villa Ernesto, Gusa, Cagayan de Oro City, and that on
of reclusion perpetua. The Court of Appeals correctly modified December 12, 1998, the accused-appellant boxed her shoulder
the penalty to be simply reclusion perpetua. Since reclusion for refusing to have sex with him.
perpetua is an indivisible penalty, the Indeterminate Sentence
Law cannot be applied.37chanroblesvirtuallawlibrary
On June 11, 1999, the Office of the City Prosecutor of Cagayan
As regards accused-appellant’s civil liability, the RTC ordered de Oro City issued a Joint Resolution, 8 finding probable cause
him to pay AAA in the amount of P75,000.00 as moral damages for grave threats, less serious physical injuries and rape and
and P75,000.00 as exemplary damages. The Court of Appeals recommending that the appropriate criminal information be filed
modified the trial court’s decision by granting the additional against the accused-appellant.
84

On July 16, 1999, two Informations for rape were filed before the The prosecution's theory was anchored on the testimonies of
RTC respectively docketed as Criminal Case No. 99-6689 and KKK, and her daughters MMM and 000, which, together with
Criminal Case No. 99-669.10 The Information in Criminal Case pertinent physical evidence, depicted the following events:
No. 99-668 charged the accused-appellant as follows:
KKK met the accused-appellant at the farm of her parents where
That on or about 10:30 in the evening more or less, of October 9, his father was one of the laborers. They got married after a year
1998, at Gusa, Cagayan de Oro City, Philippines, and within the of courtship.20 When their first child, MMM, was born, KKK and
jurisdiction of this Honorable Court, the above-named accused the accused-appellant put up a sari-sari store.21 Later on, they
by means of force upon person did then and there wilfully, engaged in several other businesses -trucking, rice mill and
unlawfully and feloniously have carnal knowledge with the hardware. KKK managed the businesses except for the rice mill,
private complainant, her [sic] wife, against the latter[']s will. which, ideally, was under the accused-appellant's supervision
with the help of a trusted employee. In reality, however, he
Contrary to and in Violation of R.A. 8353, the Anti-Rape Law of merely assisted in the rice mill business by occasionally driving
1997. one of the trucks to haul goods.22

Meanwhile the Information in Criminal Case No. 99-669 reads: Accused-appellant's keenness to make the businesses flourish
was not as fervent as KKK's dedication. Even the daughters
observed the disproportionate labors of their parents.23 He would
That on or about 10:30 in the evening more or less, of October drive the trucks sometimes but KKK was the one who actively
10, 1998, at Gusa, Cagayan de Oro City, Philippines, and within managed the businesses.24
the jurisdiction of this Honorable Court, the above-named
accused by means of force upon person did then and there
wilfully, unlawfully and feloniously have carnal knowledge with She wanted to provide a comfortable life for their children; he, on
the private complainant, her [sic] wife, against the latter's will. the other hand, did not acquiesce with that objective.25

Contrary to and in Violation of R.A. 8353, the Anti-Rape Law of In 1994, KKK and the accused-appellant bought a lot and built a
1997. house in Villa Ernesto, Gusa, Cagayan de Oro City.26 Three of
the children transferred residence therein while KKK, the
accused-appellant and one of their sons stayed in Dangcagan,
The accused-appellant was arrested upon a warrant issued on Bukidnon. She shuttled between the two places regularly and
July 21, 1999.11 On August 18, 1999, the accused-appellant filed sometimes he accompanied her.27 In 1998, KKK stayed in Gusa,
a Motion for Reinvestigation,12 which was denied by the trial Cagayan De Oro City most of the days of the week. 28 On
court in an Order13 dated August 19, 1999. On even date, the Wednesdays, she went to Dangcagan, Bukidnon to procure
accused-appellant was arraigned and he entered a plea of not supplies for the family store and then returned to Cagayan de
guilty to both charges.14 Oro City on the same day.29

On January 10, 2000, the prosecution filed a Motion to Admit Conjugal intimacy did not really cause marital problems between
Amended Information15 averring that the name of the private KKK and the accused-appellant. It was, in fact, both frequent
complainant was omitted in the original informations for rape. and fulfilling. He treated her well and she, of course, responded
The motion also stated that KKK, thru a Supplemental Affidavit with equal degree of enthusiasm.30However, in 1997, he started
dated November 15, 1999,16 attested that the true dates of to be brutal in bed. He would immediately remove her panties
commission of the crime are October 16, 1998 and October 1 7, and, sans any foreplay, insert her penis in her vagina. His
1998 thereby modifying the dates stated in her previous abridged method of lovemaking was physically painful for her so
complaint-affidavit. The motion was granted on January 18, she would resist his sexual ambush but he would threaten her
2000.17 Accordingly, the criminal informations were amended as into submission.31
follows:
In 1998, KKK and the accused-appellant started quarrelling
Criminal Case No. 99-668: usually upon his complaint that she failed to attend to him. She
was preoccupied with financial problems in their businesses and
That on or about October 16, 1998 at Gusa, Cagayan de Oro a bank loan. He wanted KKK to stay at home because "a woman
City, Philippines, and within the jurisdiction of this Honorable must stay in the house and only good in bed (sic) x x x." She
Court, the above-named accused by means of force upon disobeyed his wishes and focused on her goal of providing a
person did then and there wilfully, unlawfully and feloniously good future for the children.32
have carnal knowledge with the private complainant, his wife,
[KKK], against the latter's will. Four days before the subject rape incidents or on October 12,
1998, KKK and the accused-appellant slept together in Cebu
Contrary to and in violation of R.A. 8353, the Anti-Rape Law of City where the graduation rites of their eldest daughter were
1997.18 held. By October 14, 1998, the three of them were already back
in Cagayan de Oro City.33
Criminal Case No. 99-669:
On October 16, 1998, the accused-appellant, his wife KKK and
That on or about October 17, 1998 at Gusa, Cagayan de Oro their children went about their nightly routine. The family store in
City, Philippines, and within the jurisdiction of this Honorable their residence was closed at about 9:00 p.m. before supper was
Court, the above-named accused by means of force upon taken. Afterwards, KKK and the children went to the girls'
person did then and there wilfully, unlawfully and feloniously bedroom at the mezzanine of the house to pray the rosary while
have carnal knowledge with the private complainant, his wife, the accused-appellant watched television in the living
[KKK], against the latter's will. room.34 OOO and MMM then prepared their beds. Soon after, the
accused-appellant fetched KKK and bid her to come with him to
their conjugal bedroom in the third floor of the house. KKK
Contrary to and in violation of R.A. 8353, the Anti-Rape Law of complied.35
1997.19
Once in the bedroom, KKK changed into a daster and fixed the
The accused-appellant was thereafter re-arraigned. He matrimonial bed but she did not lie thereon with the accused-
maintained his not guilty plea to both indictments and a joint trial appellant and instead, rested separately in a cot near the bed.
of the two cases forthwith ensued. Her reclusive behavior prompted him to ask angrily: "[W]hy are
you lying on the c{o]t[?]", and to instantaneously order: "You
Version of the prosecution transfer here [to] our bed."36
85

KKK insisted to stay on the cot and explained that she had dismissed his comment by turning her head away after retorting:
headache and abdominal pain due to her forthcoming "So be it." After that, he left the room.55
menstruation. Her reasons did not appease him and he got
angrier. He rose from the bed, lifted the cot and threw it against He returned 15 minutes later56 and when KKK still refused to go
the wall causing KKK to fall on the floor. Terrified, KKK stood up with him, he became infuriated. He lifted her from the bed and
from where she fell, took her pillow and transferred to the bed.37 attempted to carry her out of the room as he exclaimed: "Why
will you sleep here[?] Lets go to our bedroom." When she defied
The accused-appellant then lay beside KKK and not before long, him, he grabbed her short pants causing them to tear apart. 57 At
expressed his desire to copulate with her by tapping his fingers this point, MMM interfered, "Pa, don't do that to Mama because
on her lap. She politely declined by warding off his hand and we are in front of you."58
reiterating that she was not feeling well.38
The presence of his children apparently did not pacify the
The accused-appellant again asserted his sexual yearning and accused-appellant who yelled, "[E]ven in front of you, I can have
when KKK tried to resist by holding on to her panties, he pulled sex of your mother [sic J because I'm the head of the family." He
them down so forcefully they tore on the sides. 39 KKK stayed then ordered his daughters to leave the room. Frightened, the
defiant by refusing to bend her legs.40 girls obliged and went to the staircase where they subsequently
heard the pleas of their helpless mother resonate with the
The accused-appellant then raised KKK's daster,41 stretched her creaking bed.59
legs apart and rested his own legs on them. She tried to wrestle
him away but he held her hands and succeeded in penetrating The episodes in the bedroom were no less disturbing. The
her. As he was carrying out his carnal desires, KKK continued to accused-appellant forcibly pulled KKK's short pants and panties.
protest by desperately shouting: "[D]on 't do that to me because He paid no heed as she begged, "[D]on 't do that to me, my body
I'm not feeling well."42 is still aching and also my abdomen and I cannot do what you
wanted me to do [sic]. I cannot withstand sex."60
With a concrete wall on one side and a mere wooden partition on
the other enclosing the spouses' bedroom,43KKK's pleas were After removing his own short pants and briefs, he flexed her
audible in the children's bedroom where MMM lay awake. legs, held her hands, mounted her and forced himself inside her.
Once gratified, the accused-appellant put on his short pants and
Upon hearing her mother crying and hysterically shouting: briefs, stood up, and went out of the room laughing as he
"Eddie, don't do that to me, have pity on me,"44 MMM woke up conceitedly uttered: "[I]t s nice, that is what you deserve because
000 who prodded her to go to their parents' room. 45 MMM you are [a] flirt or fond of sex." He then retreated to the masters'
hurriedly climbed upstairs, vigorously knocked on the door of her bedroom.61
parents' bedroom and inquired: "Pa, why is it that Mama is
crying?"46 The accused-appellant then quickly put on his briefs Sensing that the commotion in their bedroom has ceased, MMM
and shirt, partly opened the door and said: "[D]on 't interfere and OOO scurried upstairs but found the door locked. MMM
because this is a family trouble," before closing it again. 47 Since pulled out a jalousie window, inserted her arm, reached for the
she heard her mother continue to cry, MMM ignored his father's doorknob inside and disengaged its lock. Upon entering the
admonition, knocked at the bedroom door again, and then kicked room, MMM and OOO found their mother crouched on the bed
it.48 A furious accused-appellant opened the door wider and with her hair disheveled. The girls asked: "Ma, what happened to
rebuked MMM once more: "Don't interfere us. Go downstairs you, why are you crying?" KKK replied: "[Y}our father is a beast
because this is family trouble!" Upon seeing KKK crouching and and animal, he again forced me to have sex with him even if I
crying on top of the bed, MMM boldly entered the room, don't feel well. "62
approached her mother and asked: "Ma, why are you crying?"
before asking her father: "Pa, what happened to Mama why is it Version of the defense
that her underwear is torn[?]"49
The defense spun a different tale. The accused-appellant's father
When MMM received no definite answers to her questions, she owned a land adjacent to that of KKK's father. He came to know
helped her mother get up in order to bring her to the girls' KKK because she brought food for her father's laborers. When
bedroom. KKK then picked up her tom underwear and covered they got married on October 18, 1975, he was a high school
herself with a blanket.50 However, their breakout from the room graduate while she was an elementary graduate.
was not easy. To prevent KKK from leaving, the accused-
appellant blocked the doorway by extending his arm towards the
knob. He commanded KKK to "[S]tay here, you sleep in our Their humble educational background did not deter them from
room," when the trembling KKK pleaded: "Eddie, allow me to go pursuing a comfortable life. Through their joint hard work and
out." He then held KKK's hands but she pulled them back. efforts, the couple gradually acquired personal properties and
Determined to get away, MMM leaned against door and established their own businesses that included a rice mill
embraced her mother tightly as they pushed their way out.51 managed by the accused-appellant. He also drove their trucks
that hauled coffee, copra, or com.63
In their bedroom, the girls gave their mother some water and
queried her as to what happened.52 KKK relayed: "[Y]our father The accused-appellant denied raping his wife on October 16 and
is an animal, a beast; he forced me to have sex with him when 17, 1998. He claimed that on those dates he was in Dangcagan,
I'm not feeling well." The girls then locked the door and let her Bukidnon, peeling com. On October 7, his truck met an accident
rest."53 somewhere in Angeles Ranch, Maluko, Manolo Fortich,
Bukidnon. He left the truck by the roadside because he had to
attend MMM's graduation in Cebu on October 12 with KKK.
The accused-appellant's aggression recurred the following night. When they returned to Bukidnon on October 14, he asked KKK
After closing the family store on October 17, 1998, KKK and the and MMM to proceed to Cagayan de Oro City and just leave him
children took their supper. The accused-appellant did not join behind so he can take care of the truck and buy some com.64
them since, according to him, he already ate dinner elsewhere.
After resting for a short while, KKK and the children proceeded
to the girls' bedroom and prayed the rosary. KKK decided to Ryle Equia (Equia), the spouses' driver from January 1996 until
spend the night in the room's small bed and the girls were June 1999 corroborated the above claims. According to him, on
already fixing the beddings when the accused-appellant entered. October 16, 1998, the accused-appellant was within the vicinity
of the rice mill's loading area in Dangcagan, Bukidnon, cleaning
a pick-up truck. On October 17, 1998, he and the accused-
"Why are you sleeping in the room of our children", he asked appellant were in Dangcagan, Bukidnon, loading sacks of com
KKK, who responded that she preferred to sleep with the into the truck. They finished loading at 3 :00 p.m. The accused-
children.54 He then scoffed: "Its alright if you will not go with me, appellant then instructed Equia to proceed to Maluko, Manolo
anyway, there are women that could be paid [P] 1,000.00." She Fortich, Bukidnon while the former attended a fiesta in New
86

Cebu, Kianggat, Dangcagan, Bukidnon. At around 4:00 p.m., credence to the spontaneous and straightforward testimonies of
Equia, together with a helper and a mechanic, left for Maluko in the prosecution's witnesses. The trial court also upheld as
order to tow the stalled truck left there by the accused-appellant sincere and genuine the two daughters' testimonies, as it is not
in October 7 and thereafter, bring it to Cagayan de Oro City natural in our culture for daughters to testify against their own
together with the separate truck loaded with com. father for a crime such as rape if the same was not truly
committed.
They arrived in Maluko at 7:00 p.m. and it took them three hours
to turn the truck around and hoist it to the towing bar of the other The trial court rejected the version of the defense and found
truck. At around 10:00 p.m., the accused-appellant arrived in unbelievable the accused-appellant's accusations of extra-
Maluko. The four of them then proceeded to Cagayan de Oro marital affairs and money squandering against KKK. The trial
City where they arrived at 3 :00 a.m. of October 18, 1998. The court shelved the accused-appellant's alibi for being premised on
accused-appellant went to Gusa while the other three men inconsistent testimonies and the contradicting declarations of the
brought the damaged truck to Cugman.65 other defense witness, Equia, as to the accused-appellant's
actual whereabouts on October 16, 1998. Accordingly, the RTC
The accused-appellant asserted that KKK merely fabricated the ruling disposed as follows:
rape charges as her revenge because he took over the control
and management of their businesses as well as the possession WHEREFORE, the Court hereby finds accused Edgar Jumawan
of their pick-up truck in January 1999. The accused-appellant "GUILTY" beyond reasonable doubt of the two (2) separate
was provoked to do so when she failed to account for their bank charges of rape and hereby sentences him to suffer the penalty
deposits and business earnings. The entries in their bank of reclusion perpetua for each, to pay complainant [P]50,000.00
account showed the balance of ₱3,190,539.83 on October 31, in each case as moral damages, indemnify complainant the sum
1996 but after only a month or on November 30, 1996, the of (P]75,000.00 in each case, [P]50,000.00 as exemplary
amount dwindled to a measly ₱9,894.88.66 Her failure to damages and to pay the costs.
immediately report to the police also belies her rape
allegations.67 SO ORDERED.77

KKK wanted to cover-up her extra-marital affairs, which the Ruling of the CA
accused-appellant gradually detected from her odd behavior.
While in Cebu on October 12, 1998 for MMM's graduation rites,
the accused-appellant and KKK had sexual intercourse. He was In its Decision78 dated July 9, 2008, the CA affirmed in toto the
surprised when his wife asked him to get a napkin to wipe her RTC ruling. The CA held that Section 14, Rule 110 of the Rules
after having sex. He tagged her request as "high-tech," because of Criminal Procedure, sanctioned the amendment of the original
they did not do the same when they had sex in the past. KKK informations. Further, the accused-appellant was not prejudiced
had also become increasingly indifferent to him. When he arrives by the amendment because he was re-arraigned with respect to
home, it was an employee, not her, who opened the door and the amended informations.
welcomed him. She prettied herself and would no longer ask for
his permission whenever she went out.68 The CA found that the prosecution, through the straightforward
testimony of the victim herself and the corroborative declarations
Bebs,69 KKK's cousin and a cashier in their Bukidnon store, gave of MMM and OOO, was able to establish, beyond reasonable
the accused-appellant several love letters purportedly addressed doubt, all the elements of rape under R.A. No. 8353. The
to Bebs but were actually intended for KKK.70 accused-appellant had carnal knowledge of KKK by using force
and intimidation.
KKK had more than ten paramours some of whom the accused-
appellant came to know as: Arsenio, Jong-Jong, Joy or Joey, The CA also ruled that KKK's failure to submit herself to medical
somebody from the military or the Philippine National Police, examination did not negate the commission of the crime
another one is a government employee, a certain Fernandez and because a medical certificate is not necessary to prove rape.
three other priests.71 Several persons told him about the
paramours of his wife but he never confronted her or them about The CA rejected the accused-appellant's argument that since he
it because he trusted her.72 and KKK are husband and wife with mutual obligations of and
right to sexual intercourse, there must be convincing physical
What further confirmed his suspicions was the statement made evidence or manifestations of the alleged force and intimidation
by OOO on November 2, 1998. At that time, OOO was listening used upon KKK such as bruises. The CA explained that physical
loudly to a cassette player. Since he wanted to watch a television showing of external injures is not indispensable to prosecute and
program, he asked OOO to tum down the volume of the cassette convict a person for rape; what is necessary is that the victim
player. She got annoyed, unplugged the player, spinned around was forced to have sexual intercourse with the accused.
and hit the accused-appellant's head with the socket. His head
bled. An altercation between the accused-appellant and KKK In addition, the CA noted that the fact that KKK and the accused-
thereafter followed because the latter took OOO's side. During appellant are spouses only reinforces the truthfulness of KKK's
the argument, OOO blurted out that KKK was better off without accusations because no wife in her right mind would accuse her
the accused-appellant because she had somebody young, husband of having raped her if it were not true.
handsome, and a businessman unlike the accused-appellant
who smelled bad, and was old, and ugly.73 The delay in the filing of the rape complaint was sufficiently
explained by KKK when she stated that she only found out that a
KKK also wanted their property divided between them with three- wife may charge his husband with rape when the fiscal
fourths thereof going to her and one-fourth to the accused- investigating her separate complaint for grave threats and
appellant. However, the separation did not push through physical injuries told her about it.
because the accused-appellant's parents
intervened.74 Thereafter, KKK pursued legal separation from the Finally, the CA dismissed the accused-appellant's alibi for lack of
accused-appellant by initiating Barangay Case No. 00588-99 convincing evidence that it was physically impossible for him to
before the Office of Lupong Tagapamayapa of Gusa, Cagayan be at his residence in Cagayan de Oro City at the time of the
de Oro City and thereafter obtaining a Certificate to File Action commission of the crimes, considering that Dangcagan,
dated February 18, 1999.75 Bukidnon, the place where he allegedly was, is only about four
or five hours away. Accordingly, the decretal portion of the
Ruling of the RTC decision read:

In its Judgment76 dated April 1, 2002, the RTC sustained the WHEREFORE, in the light of the foregoing, the appealed
version proffered by the prosecution by giving greater weight and Judgment is hereby AFFIRMED.
87

SO ORDERED.79 The first case in the USA that applied the marital exemption rule
was Commonwealth v. Fogerty95 promulgated in 1857. The
Hence, the present review. In the Court Resolution 80 dated July Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts pronounced that it
6, 2009, the Court notified the parties that, if they so desire, they would always be a defense in rape to show marriage to the
may file their respective supplemental briefs. In a Manifestation victim. Several other courts adhered to a similar rationale with all
and Motion81 dated September 4, 2009, the appellee, through the of them citing Hale's theory as basis.96
Office of the Solicitor General, expressed that it intends to adopt
its Brief before the CA. On April 16, 2012, the accused-appellant, The rule was formally codified in the Penal Code of New York in
through counsel, filed his Supplemental Brief, arguing that he 1909. A husband was endowed with absolute immunity from
was not in Cagayan de Oro City when the alleged rape incidents prosecution for the rape of his wife.97 The privilege was personal
took place, and the presence of force, threat or intimidation is and pertained to him alone. He had the marital right to rape his
negated by: (a) KKK's voluntary act of going with him to the wife but he will be liable when he aids or abets another person in
conjugal bedroom on October 16, 1998; (b) KKK's failure to put raping her.98
up resistance or seek help from police authorities; and ( c) the
absence of a medical certificate and of blood traces in KKK's In the 1970s, the rule was challenged by women's movements in
panties.82 the USA demanding for its abolition for being violative of married
women's right to be equally protected under rape laws.99
Our Ruling
In 1978, the rule was qualified by the Legislature in New York by
I. Rape and marriage: the historical connection proscribing the application of the rule in cases where the
husband and wife are living apart pursuant to a court order
The evolution of rape laws is actually traced to two ancient "which by its terms or in its effects requires such living apart," or
English practices of 'bride capture' whereby a man conquered a a decree, judgment or written agreement of separation.100
woman through rape and 'stealing an heiress' whereby a man
abducted a woman and married her.83 In 1983, the marital exemption rule was abandoned in New York
when the Court of Appeals of New York declared the same
The rape laws then were intended not to redress the violation of unconstitutional in People v. Liberta101 for lack of rational basis in
the woman's chastity but rather to punish the act of obtaining the distinguishing between marital rape and non-marital rape. The
heiress' property by forcible marriage84 or to protect a man's decision, which also renounced Hale's irrevocable implied
valuable interest in his wife's chastity or her daughter's virginity.85 consent theory, ratiocinated as follows:

If a man raped an unmarried virgin, he was guilty of stealing her We find that there is no rational basis for distinguishing between
father's property and if a man raped his wife, he was merely marital rape and nonmarital rape. The various rationales which
using his property.86 have been asserted in defense of the exemption are either
based upon archaic notions about the consent and property
rights incident to marriage or are simply unable to withstand
Women were subjugated in laws and society as objects or goods even the slightest scrutiny. We therefore declare the marital
and such treatment was justified under three ideologies. exemption for rape in the New York statute to be
unconstitutional.
Under the chattel theory prevalent during the 6th century, a
woman was the property of her father until she marries to Lord Hale's notion of an irrevocable implied consent by a married
become the property of her husband.87 If a man abducted an woman to sexual intercourse has been cited most frequently in
unmarried woman, he had to pay the owner, and later buy her support of the marital exemption. x x x Any argument based on a
from the owner; buying and marrying a wife were synonymous.88 supposed consent, however, is untenable. Rape is not simply a
sexual act to which one party does not consent. Rather, it is a
From the 11th century to the 16th century, a woman lost her degrading, violent act which violates the bodily integrity of the
identity upon marriage and the law denied her political power victim and frequently causes severe, long-lasting physical and
and status under the feudal doctrine of coverture.89 psychic harm x x x. To ever imply consent to such an act is
irrational and absurd. Other than in the context of rape statutes,
A husband had the right to chastise his wife and beat her if she marriage has never been viewed as giving a husband the right to
misbehaved, allowing him to bring order within the family.90 coerced intercourse on demand x x x. Certainly, then, a marriage
license should not be viewed as a license for a husband to
forcibly rape his wife with impunity. A married woman has the
This was supplanted by the marital unity theory, which espoused same right to control her own body as does an unmarried
a similar concept. Upon marrying, the woman becomes one with woman x x x. If a husband feels "aggrieved" by his wife's refusal
her husband. She had no right to make a contract, sue another, to engage in sexual intercourse, he should seek relief in the
own personal property or write a will.91 courts governing domestic relations, not in "violent or forceful
self-help x x x."
II. The marital exemption rule
The other traditional justifications for the marital exemption were
In the 17th century, Sir Matthew Hale (Hale), a Chief Justice in the common-law doctrines that a woman was the property of her
England, conceived the irrevocable implied consent theory that husband and that the legal existence of the woman was
would later on emerge as the marital exemption rule in rape. He "incorporated and consolidated into that of the husband x x x."
stated that: Both these doctrines, of course, have long been rejected in this
State. Indeed, "[nowhere] in the common-law world - [or] in any
modem society - is a woman regarded as chattel or demeaned
[T]he husband cannot be guilty of a rape committed by himself
by denial of a separate legal identity and the dignity associated
upon his lawful wife, for by their mutual matrimonial consent and
with recognition as a whole human being x x x." 102 (Citations
contract the wife hath given up herself in this kind unto her
omitted)
husband, which she cannot retract.92

By 1993, marital rape was a crime in all 50 states, with 17 of


The rule was observed in common law countries such as the
them, as well as the District of Columbia, outlawing the act
United States of America (USA) and England. It gives legal
without exemptions. Meanwhile, the 33 other states granted
immunity to a man who forcibly sexually assaults his wife, an act
some exemptions to a husband from prosecution such as when
which would be rape if committed against a woman not his
the wife is mentally or physically impaired, unconscious, asleep,
wife.93 In those jurisdictions, rape is traditionally defined as "the
or legally unable to consent.103
forcible penetration of the body of a woman who is not the wife
of the perpetrator."94
88

III. Marital Rape in the Philippines Article 266-C. Effect of Pardon. - The subsequent valid marriage
between the offended party shall extinguish the criminal action or
Interestingly, no documented case on marital rape has ever the penalty imposed.
reached this Court until now. It appears, however, that the old
provisions of rape under Article 335 of the RPC adhered to In case it is the legal husband who is the offender, the
Hale's irrevocable implied consent theory, albeit in a limited form. subsequent forgiveness by the wife as the offended party shall
According to Chief Justice Ramon C. Aquino,104 a husband may extinguish the criminal action or the penalty: Provided, That the
not be guilty of rape under Article 335 of Act No. 3815 but, in crime shall not be extinguished or the penalty shall not be
case there is legal separation, the husband should be held guilty abated if the marriage is void ab initio.
of rape if he forces his wife to submit to sexual intercourse.105
Read together with Section 1 of the law, which unqualifiedly uses
In 1981, the Philippines joined 180 countries in ratifying the the term "man" in defining rape, it is unmistakable that R.A. No.
United Nations Convention on the Elimination of all Forms of 8353 penalizes the crime without regard to the rapist's legal
Discrimination Against Women (UN-CEDAW).106 Hailed as the relationship with his victim, thus:
first international women's bill of rights, the CEDAW is the first
major instrument that contains a ban on all forms of Article 266-A. Rape: When And How Committed. - Rape is
discrimination against women. The Philippines assumed the role committed:
of promoting gender equality and women's empowerment as a
vital element in addressing global concerns.107 The country also
committed, among others, to condemn discrimination against 1) By a man who shall have carnal knowledge of a woman under
women in all its forms, and agreed to pursue, by all appropriate any of the following circumstances:
means and without delay, a policy of eliminating discrimination
against women and, to this end, undertook: a) Through force, threat, or intimidation;

(a) To embody the principle of the equality of men and b) When the offended party is deprived of reason or
women in their national constitutions or other otherwise unconscious;
appropriate legislation if not yet incorporated therein
and to ensure, through law and other appropriate c) By means of fraudulent machination or grave abuse
means, the practical realization of this principle; of authority; and

(b) To adopt appropriate legislative and other measures, d) When the offended party is under twelve (12) years
including sanctions where appropriate, prohibiting all of age or is demented, even though none of the
discrimination against women; circumstances mentioned above be present.

xxxx The explicit intent to outlaw marital rape is deducible from the
records of the deliberations of the 10th Congress on the law's
(f) To take all appropriate measures, including progenitor's, House Bill No. 6265 and Senate Bill No. 650. In
legislation, to modify or abolish existing laws, spite of qualms on tagging the crime as 'marital rape' due to
regulations, customs and practices which constitute conservative Filipino impressions on marriage, the consensus of
discrimination against women; our lawmakers was clearly to include and penalize marital rape
under the general definition of 'rape,' viz:
(g) To repeal all national penal provisions which
constitute discrimination against women.108 MR. DAMASING: Madam Speaker, Your Honor, one more point

In compliance with the foregoing international commitments, the of clarification in the House version on Anti-Rape Bill, House Bill
Philippines enshrined the principle of gender equality in the 1987 No. 6265, we never agreed to marital rape. But under Article
Constitution specifically in Sections 11 and 14 of Article II 266-C, it says here: "In case it is the legal husband who is the
thereof, thus: offender... " Does this presuppose that there is now marital rape?
x x x.
Sec. 11. The State values the dignity of every human person and
guarantees full respect for human rights. MR. LARA: x x x [I]n this jurisdiction, well, I only have a limited,
very limited 17 years of private practice in the legal profession,
xxxx Madam Speaker, and I believe that I can put at stake my license
as a lawyer in this jurisdiction there is no law that prohibits a
husband from being sued by the wife for rape. Even
Sec. 14. The State recognizes the role of women in nation- jurisprudence, we don't have any jurisprudence that prohibits a
building, and shall ensure the fundamental equality before the wife from suing a husband. That is why even if we don't provide
law of women and men. The Philippines also acceded to adopt in this bill expanding the definition of crime that is now being
and implement the generally accepted principles of international presented for approval, Madam Speaker, even if we don't
law such as the CEDA W and its allied issuances, viz: provide here for marital rape, even if we don't provide for sexual
rape, there is the right of the wife to go against the husband. The
Article II, Section 2. The Philippines renounces war as an wife can sue the husband for marital rape and she cannot be
instrument of national policy, and adopts the generally accepted prevented from doing so because in this jurisdiction there is no
principles of international law as part of the law of the land and law that prohibits her from doing so. This is why we had to put
adheres to the policy of peace, equality, justice, freedom, second paragraph of 266-C because it is the belief of many of
cooperation, and amity with all nations. (Emphasis ours) us. x x x, that if it is true that in this jurisdiction there is marital
rape even if we don't provide it here, then we must provide for
The Legislature then pursued the enactment of laws to something that will unify and keep the cohesion of the family
propagate gender equality. In 1997, R.A. No. 8353 eradicated together that is why we have the second paragraph.
the stereotype concept of rape in Article 335 of the RPC. 109 The
law reclassified rape as a crime against person and removed it MR. DAMASING: Madam Speaker, Your Honor, under the House
from the ambit of crimes against chastity. More particular to the version specifically House Bill No. 6265 our provision on a
present case, and perhaps the law's most progressive proviso is husband forcing the wife is not marital rape, it is marital sexual
the 2nd paragraph of Section 2 thereof recognizing the reality of assault.
marital rape and criminalizing its perpetration, viz:
MR. LARA: That is correct, Madam Speaker.
89

MR. DAMASING: But here it is marital rape because there is no proviso. It implies na there is an instance when a husband can
crime of sexual assault. So, Your Honor, direct to the point, be charged [with] rape x x x.
under Article 266-C, is it our understanding that in the second
paragraph, quote: "In case it is the legal husband who is the HON. ROXAS: Otherwise, silent na.
offender, this refers to marital rape filed against the husband? Is
that correct?
HON. ROCO: Otherwise, we are silent na. So parang i-delete
natin ito. But it is understood that this rule of evidence is now
MR. LARA: No, Madam Speaker, not entirely, no. The answer is transport[ed], put into 266-F, the effect of pardon.
no.
PRESIDING OFFICER APOSTOL: We will retain this effect of
MR. DAMASING: So if the husband is guilty of sexual assault, pardon. We will remove marital rape.
what do you call- it?
HON. ROCO: No, yun ang, oo we will remove this one on page 3
MR. LARA: Sexual assault, Madam Speaker. but we will retain the one on page 8, the effect of pardon. x x x
[I]t is inferred but we leave it because after all it is just a rule of
MR. DAMASING: There is no crime of sexual assault, Your evidence. But I think we should understand that a husband
Honor, we have already stated that. Because under 1 and 2 it is cannot beat at his wife to have sex. Di ha? I think that should be
all denominated as rape, there is no crime of sexual assault. made clear. x x x.
That is why I am sorry that our House version which provided for
sexual assault was not carried by the Senate version because all xxxx
sexual crimes under this bicameral conference committee report
are all now denominated as rape whether the penalty is from
reclusion perpetua to death or whether the penalty is only prision HON. ROCO: x x x [W]e are not defining a crime of marital rape.
mayor. So there is marital rape, Your Honor, is that correct? All we are saying is that if you're [the] legal husband, Jesus
Christ, don't beat up to have sex. I almost want, you are my wife,
why do you have to beat me up.
xxxx
So, ganoon. So, if we both justify it that way in the Report as
MR. DAMASING: Madam Speaker, Your Honor, I am in favor of inferred in proviso, I mean, we can face up, I hope, to the women
this. I am in favor of punishing the husband who forces the wife and they would understand that it is half achieved.
even to 30 years imprisonment. But please do not call it marital
rape, call it marital sexual assault because of the sanctity of
marriage. x x x.110 (Emphasis ours) HON. ZAMORA: I think, Raul, as long as we understand that we
are not defining or creating a new crime but instead, we are just
defining a rule of evidence. x x x.
HON. APOSTOL: In our version, we did not mention marital rape
but marital rape is not excluded.
HON. ROCO: Then, in which case we may just want to clarify as
a rule of evidence the fact that he is husband is not, does not
HON. ROCO: Yeah. No. But I think there is also no specific negate.111
mention.
CHAIRMAN LARA: x x x We all agree on the substance of the
HON. APOSTOL: No. No. No. Silent lang 'yung marital rape. point in discussion. The only disagreement now is where to place
it. Let us clear this matter. There are two suggestions now on
xxxx marital rape. One is that it is rape if it is done with force or
intimidation or any of the circumstances that would define rape x
HON. ROCO: xx x [I]f we can retain the effect of pardon, then x x immaterial. The fact that the husband and wife are separated
this marital rape can be implicitly contained in the second does not come into the picture. So even if they are living under
paragraph. x x x So marital rape actually was in the House one roof x x x for as long as the attendant circumstances of the
version x x x. But it was not another definition of rape. You will traditional rape is present, then that is rape.112
notice, it only says, that because you are the lawful husband
does not mean that you cannot commit rape. Theoretically, I PRESIDING OFFICER ANGARA-CASTILLO: Mr. Chairman, x x
mean, you can beat up your wife until she's blue. And if the wife x [t]his provision on marital rape, it does not actually change the
complains she was raped, I guess that, I mean, you just cannot meaning of rape. It merely erases the doubt in anybody's mind,
raise the defense x x x[:] I am the husband. But where in the whether or not rape can indeed be committed by the husband
marriage contract does it say that I can beat you up? That's all it against the wife. So the bill really says, you having been married
means. That is why if we stop referring to it as marital rape, to one another is not a legal impediment. So I don't really think
acceptance is easy. Because parang ang marital rape, married there is any need to change the concept of rape as defined
na nga kami. I cannot have sex. No, what it is saying is you're presently under the revised penal code. This do[es] not actually
[the] husband but you cannot beat me up. x x x. That's why to add anything to the definition of rape. It merely says, it is merely
me it's not alarming. It was just a way of saying you're [the] clarificatory. That if indeed the wife has evidence to show that
husband, you cannot say when I am charged with rape x x x. she was really brow beaten, or whatever or forced or intimidated
into having sexual intercourse against her will, then the crime of
PRESIDING OFFICER SHAHAN!: All right, so how do you rape has been committed against her by the husband,
propose it if we put it in[?] notwithstanding the fact that they have been legally married. It
does not change anything at all, Mr. Chairman.
HON. ROCO: x x x [A]ll we are saying [is] that if you are the
lawful husband does not mean you can have carnal knowledge PRESIDING OFFICER APOSTOL: Yes, I think, there is no
by force[,] threat or intimidation or by depriving your wife reason, change on this x x x.113
a grave abuse of authority, I don't know how that cannot apply. Di
ba yung, or putting an instrument into the, yun ang sinasabi ko The paradigm shift on marital rape in the Philippine jurisdiction is
lang, it is not meant to have another classification of rape. It is all further affirmed by R.A. No. 9262, 114 which regards rape within
the same definition x x x. marriage as a form of sexual violence that may be committed by
a man against his wife within or outside the family abode, viz:
xxxx
Violence against women and their children refers to any act or a
HON.ROCO: What is 266-F? x x x. Now if we can retain 266-F x series of acts committed by any person against a woman who is
x x, we can say that this rule is implicit already in the first his wife, former wife, or against a woman with whom the person
90

has or had a sexual or dating relationship, or with whom he has wife's body and thus her consent to every act of sexual intimacy
a common child, or against her child whether legitimate or with him is always obligatory or at least, presumed.
illegitimate, within or without the family abode, which result in or
is likely to result in. physical, sexual, psychological harm or Another important international instrument on gender equality is
suffering, or economic abuse including threats of such acts, the UN Declaration on the Elimination of Violence Against
battery, assault, coercion, harassment or arbitrary deprivation of Women, which was Promulgated118 by the UN General Assembly
liberty. It includes, but is not limited to, the following acts: subsequent to the CEDA W. The Declaration, in enumerating the
forms of gender-based violence that constitute acts of
A. "Physical Violence" refers to acts that include bodily discrimination against women, identified 'marital rape' as a
or physical harm; species of sexual violence, viz:

B. "Sexual violence" refers to an act which is sexual in Article 1


nature, committed against a woman or her child. It
includes, but is not limited to: For the purposes of this Declaration, the term "violence against
women" means any act of gender-based violence that results in,
a) rape, sexual harassment, acts of or is likely to result in, physical, sexual or psychological harm or
lasciviousness, treating a woman or her child suffering to women, including threats of such acts, coercion or
as a sex object, making demeaning and arbitrary deprivation of liberty, whether occurring in public or in
sexually suggestive remarks, physically private life.
attacking the sexual parts of the victim's body,
forcing her/him to watch obscene publications Article 2
and indecent shows or forcing the woman or
her child to do indecent acts and/or make films
thereof, forcing the wife and mistress/lover to Violence against women shall be understood to encompass, but
live in the conjugal home or sleep together in not be limited to, the following:
the same room with the abuser;
(a) Physical, sexual and psychological violence occurring in the
b) acts causing or attempting to cause the family, including battering, sexual abuse of female children in the
victim to engage in any sexual activity by household, dowry-related violence, marital rape, female genital
force, threat of force, physical or other harm or mutilation and other traditional practices harmful to women, non-
threat of physical or other harm or coercion; spousal violence and violence related to
exploitation;119 (Emphasis ours)
c) Prostituting the woman or child.
Clearly, it is now acknowledged that rape, as a form of sexual
violence, exists within marriage. A man who penetrates her wife
Statistical figures confirm the above characterization. Emotional without her consent or against her will commits sexual violence
and other forms of non-personal violence are the most common upon her, and the Philippines, as a State Party to the CEDA W
type of spousal violence accounting for 23% incidence among and its accompanying Declaration, defines and penalizes the act
ever-married women. One in seven ever-married women as rape under R.A. No. 8353.
experienced physical violence by their husbands while eight
percent (8%) experienced sexual violence.115
A woman is no longer the chattel-antiquated practices labeled
her to be. A husband who has sexual intercourse with his wife is
IV. Refutation of the accused-appellant's arguments not merely using a property, he is fulfilling a marital consortium
with a fellow human being with dignity equal 120 to that he accords
The crux of the accused-appellant's plea for acquittal mirrors the himself. He cannot be permitted to violate this dignity by
irrevocable implied consent theory. In his appeal brief before the coercing her to engage in a sexual act without her full and free
CA, he posits that the two incidents of sexual intercourse, which consent. Surely, the Philippines cannot renege on its
gave rise to the criminal charges for rape, were theoretically international commitments and accommodate conservative yet
consensual, obligatory even, because he and the victim, KKK, irrational notions on marital activities121 that have lost their
were a legally married and cohabiting couple. He argues that relevance in a progressive society.
consent to copulation is presumed between cohabiting husband
and wife unless the contrary is proved. It is true that the Family Code, 122 obligates the spouses to love
one another but this rule sanctions affection and sexual intimacy,
The accused-appellant further claims that this case should be as expressions of love, that are both spontaneous and
viewed and treated differently from ordinary rape cases and that mutual123 and not the kind which is unilaterally exacted by force
the standards for determining the presence of consent or lack or coercion.
thereof must be adjusted on the ground that sexual community is
a mutual right and obligation between husband and wife.116 Further, the delicate and reverent nature of sexual intimacy
between a husband and wife excludes cruelty and coercion.
The contentions failed to muster legal and rational merit. Sexual intimacy brings spouses wholeness and oneness. It is a
gift and a participation in the mystery of creation. It is a deep
The ancient customs and ideologies from which the irrevocable sense of spiritual communion. It is a function which enlivens the
implied consent theory evolved have already been superseded hope of procreation and ensures the continuation of family
by modem global principles on the equality of rights between relations. It is an expressive interest in each other's feelings at a
men and women and respect for human dignity established in time it is needed by the other and it can go a long way in
various international conventions, such as the CEDAW. The deepening marital relationship.124 When it is egoistically utilized
Philippines, as State Party to the CEDAW, recognized that a to despoil marital union in order to advance a felonious urge for
change in the traditional role of men as well as the role of coitus by force, violence or intimidation, the Court will step in to
women in society and in the family is needed to achieve full protect its lofty purpose, vindicate justice and protect our laws
equality between them. Accordingly, the country vowed to take and State policies. Besides, a husband who feels aggrieved by
all appropriate measures to modify the social and cultural his indifferent or uninterested wife's absolute refusal to engage in
patterns of conduct of men and women, with a view to achieving sexual intimacy may legally seek the court's intervention to
the elimination of prejudices, customs and all other practices declare her psychologically incapacitated to fulfill an essential
which are based on the idea of the inferiority or the superiority of marital obligation.125 But he cannot and should not demand
either of the sexes or on stereotyped roles for men and sexual intimacy from her coercively or violently.
women.117 One of such measures is R.A. No 8353 insofar as it
eradicated the archaic notion that marital rape cannot exist Moreover, to treat marital rape cases differently from non-marital
because a husband has absolute proprietary rights over his rape cases in terms of the elements that constitute the crime and
91

in the rules for their proof, infringes on the equal protection It is settled that the evaluation by the trial court of the credibility
clause. The Constitutional right to equal protection of the of witnesses and their testimonies are entitled to the highest
laws126 ordains that similar subjects should not be treated respect. This is in view of its inimitable opportunity to directly
differently, so as to give undue favor to some and unjustly observe the witnesses and their deportment, conduct and
discriminate against others; no person or class of persons shall attitude, especially during cross-examination. Thus, unless it is
be denied the same protection of laws, which is enjoyed, by shown that its evaluation was tainted with arbitrariness or certain
other persons or other classes in like circumstances.127 facts of substance and value have been plainly overlooked,
misunderstood, or misapplied, the same will not be disturbed on
As above discussed, the definition of rape in Section 1 of R.A. appeal.132
No. 8353 pertains to: (a) rape, as traditionally known; (b) sexual
assault; and (c) marital rape or that where the victim is the After approximating the perspective of the trial court thru a
perpetrator's own spouse. The single definition for all three forms meticulous scrutiny of the entire records of the trial proceedings
of the crime shows that the law does not distinguish between and the transcript of each witnesses' testimony, the Court found
rape committed in wedlock and those committed without a no justification to disturb its findings.
marriage. Hence, the law affords protection to women raped by
their husband and those raped by any other man alike. Rather, the Court observed that KKK and her testimony were
both credible and spontaneous. Hailed to the witness stand on
The posture advanced by the accused-appellant arbitrarily six separate occasions, KKK never wavered neither did her
discriminates against married rape victims over unmarried rape statements vacillate between uncertainty and certitude. She
victims because it withholds from married women raped by their remained consistent, categorical, straightforward, and candid
husbands the penal redress equally granted by law to all rape during the rigorous cross-examination and on rebuttal
victims. examination, she was able to convincingly explain and debunk
the allegations of the defense.
Further, the Court adheres to and hereby adopts the rationale in
Liberta in rejecting the argument akin to those raised by herein She vividly recounted how the accused-appellant forced her to
accused-appellant. A marriage license should not be viewed as a have sex with him despite her refusal on October 16, 1998. He
license for a husband to forcibly rape his wife with impunity. A initially ordered her to sleep beside him in their conjugal bed by
married woman has the same right to control her own body, as violently throwing the cot where she was resting. In order not to
does an unmarried woman.128 She can give or withhold her aggravate his temper, KKK obeyed. On the bed, he insinuated
consent to a sexual intercourse with her husband and he cannot for them to have sex. When she rejected his advances due to
unlawfully wrestle such consent from her in case she refuses. abdominal pain and headache, his request for intimacy
transformed into a stubborn demand. Unyielding, KKK held her
Lastly, the human rights of women include their right to have panties but the accused-appellant forcibly pulled them down. The
control over and decide freely and responsibly on matters related tug caused the small clothing to tear apart. She reiterated that
to their sexuality, including sexual and reproductive health, free she was not feeling well and begged him to stop. But no amount
of coercion, discrimination and violence.129 Women do not divest of resistance or begging subdued him. He flexed her two legs
themselves of such right by contracting marriage for the simple apart, gripped her hands, mounted her, rested his own legs on
reason that human rights are inalienable.130 hers and inserted his penis into her vagina. She continued
pleading but he never desisted.133
In fine, since the law does not separately categorize marital rape
and non-marital rape nor provide for different definition or Her accurate recollection of the second rape incident on October
elements for either, the Court, tasked to interpret and apply what 1 7, 1998 is likewise unmistakable. After the appalling episode in
the law dictates, cannot trudge the forbidden sphere of judicial the conjugal bedroom the previous night, KKK decided to sleep
legislation and unlawfully divert from what the law sets forth. in the children's bedroom. While her daughters were fixing the
Neither can the Court frame distinct or stricter evidentiary rules beddings, the accused-appellant barged into the room and
for marital rape cases as it would inequitably burden its victims berated her for refusing to go with him to their conjugal bedroom.
and unreasonably and irrationally classify them differently from When KKK insisted to stay in the children's bedroom, the
the victims of non-marital rape. accused-appellant got angry and pulled her up. MMM's attempt
to pacify the accused-appellant further enraged him. He
reminded them that as the head of the family he could do
Indeed, there exists no legal or rational reason for the Court to whatever he wants with his wife. To demonstrate his role as
apply the law and the evidentiary rules on rape any differently if patriarch, he ordered the children to go out of the room and
the aggressor is the woman's own legal husband. The elements thereafter proceeded to force KKK into sexual intercourse. He
and quantum of proof that support a moral certainty of guilt in forcibly pulled down her short pants and panties as KKK begged
rape cases should apply uniformly regardless of the legal "Dont do that to me, my body is still aching and also my
relationship between the accused and his accuser. abdomen and I cannot do what you wanted me to do. I cannot
withstand sex."134 But her pleas fell on deaf ears. The accused-
Thus, the Court meticulously reviewed the present case in appellant removed his shorts and briefs, spread KKK's legs
accordance with the established legal principles and evidentiary apart, held her hands, mounted her and inserted his penis into
policies in the prosecution and resolution of rape cases and her vagina. After gratifying himself, he got dressed, left the room
found that no reversible error can be imputed to the conviction as he chuckled: "Its nice, that is what you deserve because you
meted the accused-appellant. are [a] flirt or fond of sex."135

The evidence for the prosecution was Entrenched is the rule that in the prosecution of rape cases, the
based on credible witnesses who gave essential element that must be proved is the absence of the
equally credible testimonies victim's consent to the sexual congress.136

In rape cases, the conviction of the accused rests heavily on the Under the law, consent is absent when: (a) it was wrestled from
credibility of the victim. Hence, the strict mandate that all courts the victim by force, threat or intimidation, fraudulent
must examine thoroughly the testimony of the offended party. machinations or grave abuse of authority; or (b) the victim is
While the accused in a rape case may be convicted solely on the incapable of giving free and voluntary consent because he/she is
testimony of the complaining witness, courts are, nonetheless, deprived of reason or otherwise unconscious or that the offended
duty-bound to establish that their reliance on the victim's party is under 12 years of age or is demented.
testimony is justified. Courts must ensure that the testimony is
credible, convincing, and otherwise consistent with human Contrary to the accused-appellant's asseverations, KKK's
nature. If the testimony of the complainant meets the test of consent was wrestled from her through force and intimidation
credibility, the accused may be convicted on the basis thereof.131 both of which were established beyond moral certainty by the
prosecution through the pertinent testimony of KKK, viz:
92

On the October 16, 1998 rape incident: xxxx

(Direct Examination) Q Was your husband able to consummate his desire?

ATTY. LARGO: xxxx

Q So, while you were already lying on the bed together with your A Yes, sir, because I cannot do anything.137
husband, do you remember what happened?
(Cross-Examination)
A He lie down beside me and asked me to have sex with him.
ATTY. AMARGA;
Q How did he manifest that he wanted to have sex with you?
Q Every time you have sex with your husband it was your
A He put his hand on my lap and asked me to have sex with him husband normally remove your panty?
but I warded off his hand.
A Yes, Sir.
Q Can you demonstrate to this Court how did he use his hand?
Q It was not unusual for your husband then to remove your
A Yes. "witness demonstrating on how the accused used his panty because according to you he normally do that if he have
finger by touching or knocking her lap which means that he sex with you?
wanted to have sex."
A Yes, Sir.
Q So, what did you do after that?
Q And finally according to you your husband have sex with you?
A I warded off his hand and refused because I was not feeling
well. (at this juncture the witness is sobbing) A Yes, Sir because he forcibly used me in spite of holding my
panty because I don't want to have sex with him at that time.
Q So, what did your husband do when you refused him to have
sex with you? Q You did not spread your legs at that time when he removed
your panty?
A He insisted and he pulled my pantie forcibly, that is why my
pantie [sic] was tom. A Yes, Sir.

Q Why, what did you do when he started to pull your pantie [sic]? Q Meaning, your position of your legs was normal during that
time?
A I resisted and tried to hold my pantie [sic] but I failed, because
he is so strong. A I tried to resist by not flexing my legs.

xx xx xxxx

Q So, when your pantie [sic] was tom by your husband, what Q At that time when your husband allegedly removed your panty
else did he do? he also remove your nightgown?

A He flexed my two legs and rested his two legs on my legs. A No, Sir.

Q So after that what else did he do? Q And he did pull out your duster [sic] towards your face?

A He succeeded in having sex with me because he held my two A He raised my duster [sic] up.
hands no matter how I wrestled but I failed because he is
stronger than me.
Q In other words your face was covered when he raised your
duster [sic]?
COURT: Make it of record that the witness is sobbing while she
is giving her testimony.
A No, only on the breast level.138
ATTY. LARGO: (To the witness cont'ng.)
On the October 17, 1998 rape incident:
Q So, what did you do when your husband already stretched
your two legs and rode on you and held your two hands? (Direct Examination)

A I told him, "don't do that because I'm not feeling well and my ATTY. LARGO
whole body is aching."
Q So, after your children went out of the room, what transpired?
Q How did you say that to your husband?
A He successfully having sex with me because he pulled my
A I told him, "don't do that to me because I'm not feeling well." short pant and pantie forcible.

Q Did you say that in the manner you are saying now? Q So, what did you say when he forcibly pulled your short and
pantie?
xxxx

A I shouted when I uttered that words.


93

A I told him, "don't do that to me, my body is still aching and also rape143 inasmuch as a medical certificate is dispensable
my abdomen and I cannot do what you wanted me to do. I evidence that is not necessary to prove rape. 144These details do
cannot withstand sex." not pertain to the elements that produce the gravamen of the
offense that is -sexual intercourse with a woman against her will
Q So, what happened to your short when he forcibly pulled it or without her consent.145
down?
The accused-appellant harps on the acquittal ruling in People v.
A It was tom. Godoy,146 the evidentiary circumstances of which are, however,
disparate from those in the present case. In Godoy, the
testimony of the complainant was inherently weak, inconsistent,
Q And after your short and pantie was pulled down by your and was controverted by the prosecution's medico-legal expert
husband, what did he do? witness who stated that force was not applied based on the
position of her hymenal laceration. This led the Court to conclude
A He also removed his short and brief and flexed my two legs that the absence of any sign of physical violence on the victim's
and mounted on me and succeeded in having sex with me.139 body is an indication of consent.147 Here, however, KKK's
testimony is, as discussed earlier, credible, spontaneous and
The accused-appellant forced his wife when he knowingly forthright.
overpowered her by gripping her hands, flexing her legs and
then resting his own legs thereon in order to facilitate the The corroborative testimonies of
consummation of his much-desired non-consensual sexual MMM and OOO are worthy of credence.
intercourse.
The accused-appellant's assertion that MMM and OOO's
Records also show that the accused-appellant employed testimonies lacked probative value as they did not witness the
sufficient intimidation upon KKK. His actuations prior to the actual rape is bereft of merit. It must be stressed that rape is
actual moment of the felonious coitus revealed that he imposed essentially committed in relative isolation, thus, it is usually only
his distorted sense of moral authority on his wife. He furiously the victim who can testify with regard to the fact of the forced
demanded for her to lay with him on the bed and thereafter sexual intercourse.148 Hence, the probative value of MMM and
coerced her to indulge his sexual craving. OOO's testimonies rest not on whether they actually witnessed
the rape but on whether their declarations were in harmony with
The fury the accused-appellant exhibited when KKK refused to KKK's narration of the circumstances, preceding, subsequent to
sleep with him on their bed, when she insisted to sleep in the and concurrent with, the rape incidents.
children's bedroom and the fact that he exercises dominance
over her as husband all cowed KKK into submission. MMM and OOO's testimonies substantiated significant points in
KKK's narration. MMM heard KKK shouting and crying: "Eddie,
The fact that KKK voluntarily went with the accused-appellant to don’t do that to me, have pity on me" 149 on the night of October
their conjugal bedroom on October 16, 1998 cannot be stretched 16, 1998 shortly after KKK and the accused-appellant went to
to mean that she consented to the forced sexual intercourse that their conjugal bedroom. When MMM went upstairs to check on
ensued. The accused-appellant was KKK's husband and hence her mother, the accused-appellant admonished her for meddling.
it was customary for her to sleep in the conjugal bedroom. No Frustrated to aid her mother who persistently cried, MMM kicked
consent can be deduced from such act of KKK because at that the door so hard the accused-appellant was prompted to open it
juncture there were no indications that sexual intercourse was and rebuke MMM once more. OOO heard all these commotion
about to take place. The issue of consent was still irrelevant from the room downstairs.
since the act for which the same is legally required did not exist
yet or at least unclear to the person from whom the consent was MMM then saw her mother crouched on the bed, crying, with her
desired. The significant point when consent must be given is at hair disheveled while her tom panty lay on the floor. After a brief
that time when it is clear to the victim that her aggressor is struggle with the accused-appellant, MMM and KKK were finally
soliciting sexual congress. In this case, that point is when the able to escape and retreat to the children's bedroom where KKK
accused-appellant tapped his fingers on her lap, a gesture KKK narrated to her daughters: "[Y]our father is an animal, a beast;
comprehended to be an invitation for a sexual intercourse, which he forced me to have sex with him when I'm not feeling well. "
she refused.
KKK gave a similar narration to MMM and OOO the following
Resistance, medical certificate and blood traces. night after the accused-appellant barged inside the children's
bedroom. The couple had an argument and when MMM tried to
We cannot give credence to the accused-appellant's argument interfere, the accused-appellant ordered her and OOO to get out
that KKK should have hit him to convey that she was resisting after bragging that he can have sex with his wife even in front of
his sexual onslaught. Resistance is not an element of rape and the children because he is the head of the family. The girls then
the law does not impose upon the victim the burden to prove stayed by the staircase where they afterwards heard their
resistance140 much more requires her to raise a specific kind mother helplessly crying and shouting for the accused-appellant
thereof. to stop.

At any rate, KKK put up persistent, audible and intelligible Indeed, the testimonies of KKK, MMM and OOO coherently
resistance for the accused-appellant to recognize that she depicted that the accused-appellant, through the use of force
seriously did not assent to a sexual congress. She held on to her and intimidation, had non-consensual and forced carnal
panties to prevent him from undressing her, she refused to bend knowledge of his wife, KKK on the nights of October 16 and 17,
her legs and she repeatedly shouted and begged for him to stop. 1998.

Moreover, as an element of rape, force or intimidation need not KKK's helpless screams and pleas from inside the bedroom
be irresistible; it may be just enough to bring about the desired coupled with her verbal and physical resistance were clear
result. What is necessary is that the force or intimidation be manifestations of coercion. Her appearance when MMM saw her
sufficient to consummate the purpose that the accused had in on the bed after the accused appellant opened the door on
mind141 or is of such a degree as to impel the defenseless and October 16, 1998, her conduct towards the accused-appellant on
hapless victim to bow into submission.142 her way out of the room, and her categorical outcry to her
children after the two bedroom episodes - all generate the
conclusion that the sexual acts that occurred were against her
Contrary to the accused-appellant's allusions, the absence of will.
blood traces in KKK's panties or the lack of a medical certificate
do not negate rape. It is not the presence or absence of blood on
the victim's underwear that determines the fact of
94

Failure to immediately report to the love letters neither did he substantiate KKK's supposed extra-
police authorities, if satisfactorily marital affairs by presenting witnesses who could corroborate his
explained, is not fatal to the claims. Further, the Court finds it unbelievable that an able man
credibility of a witness. would not have the temerity to confront his wife who has fooled
around with 10 men - some of whom he has even met. The
The testimonies of KKK and her daughters cannot be discredited accused-appellant's erratic statements on the witness stand are
merely because they failed to report the rape incidents to the inconsistent with the theory of extra-marital romance making it
police authorities or that KKK belatedly filed the rape charges. reasonable to infer that he merely made up those malicious
Delay or vacillation by the victims in reporting sexual assaults stories as a desperate ploy to extricate himself out of this legal
does not necessarily impair their credibility if such delay is quandary.
satisfactorily explained.150
At best, the basis of the alleged illicit affairs of KKK were the
At that time, KKK and her daughters were not aware that a accused-appellant's unfounded suspicions that hold no
husband forcing his wife to submit to sexual intercourse is evidentiary weight in law and thus incompetent to destroy KKK's
considered rape. In fact, KKK only found out that she could sue credibility and that of her testimony. In sum, the defense failed to
his husband for rape when Prosecutor Benjamin Tabique, Jr. present sufficiently convincing evidence that KKK is a mere
(Prosecutor Tabique) told her about it when she filed the vindictive wife who is harassing the accused-appellant with
separate charges for grave threats and physical injuries against fabricated rape charges.
the accused-appellant.151
Alibi
It must be noted that the incidents occurred a year into the
effectivity of R.A. No. 8353 abolishing marital exemption in rape It must be stressed that in raising the irrevocable implied consent
cases hence it is understandable that it was not yet known to a theory as defense, the accused-appellant has essentially
layman as opposed to legal professionals like Prosecutor admitted the facts of sexual intercourse embodied in the two
Tabique. In addition, fear of reprisal thru social humiliation which criminal informations for rape. This admission is inconsistent with
is the common factor that deter rape victims from reporting the the defense of alibi and any discussion thereon will thus be
crime to the authorities is more cumbersome in marital rape irrelevant.
cases. This is in view of the popular yet outdated belief that it is
the wife's absolute obligation to submit to her husband's carnal At any rate, the courts a quo correctly rejected his alibi.
desires. A husband raping his own wife is often dismissed as a
peculiar occurrence or trivialized as simple domestic trouble.
Alibi is one of the weakest defenses not only because it is
inherently frail and unreliable, but also because it is easy to
Unfamiliarity with or lack of knowledge of the law criminalizing fabricate and difficult to check or rebut. It cannot prevail over the
marital rape, the stigma and public scrutiny that could have positive identification of the accused by eyewitnesses who had
befallen KKK and her family had the intervention of police no improper motive to testify falsely.154
authorities or even the neighbors been sought, are acceptable
explanations for the failure or delay in reporting the subject rape
incidents. For the defense of alibi to prosper, the accused must prove not
only that he was at some other place at the time of the
commission of the crime, but also that it was physically
The victim -S testimony on the impossible for him to be at the locus delicti or within its
witness stand rendered immediate vicinity. Physical impossibility refers not only to the
unnecessary the presentation of her geographical distance between the place where the accused
complaint-affidavit as evidence. was and the place where the crime was committed when the
crime transpired, but more importantly, the facility of access
The failure of the prosecution to present KKK's complaint- between the two places.155
affidavit for rape is not fatal in view of the credible, candid and
positive testimony of KKK on the witness stand. Testimonial Even granting in arguendo that the accused-appellant had
evidence carries more weight than the affidavit since it indeed attended a fiesta in Dangcagan, Bukidnon or was hauling
underwent the rudiments of a direct, cross, re-direct and re-cross com with Equia on the dates of commission of the crime, the
examinations. Affidavits or statements taken ex parte are same will not easily exonerate him. The accused-appellant failed
generally considered incomplete and inaccurate. Thus, by to adduce clear and convincing evidence that it was physically
nature, they are inferior to testimony given in court.152 impossible for him to be at his residence in Cagayan de Oro City
at the time of the commission of the crime. Dangcagan,
Ill motive imputed to the victim Bukidnon can be traversed by about four or five hours from
Cagayan de Oro City, and even less by private vehicle which
The ill motive, which the accused-appellant imputed to KKK, was available to the accused appellant at any time.156 Thus, it
does not inspire belief as it is riddled with loopholes generated was not physically impossible for him to be at the situs criminis at
by incongruent and flimsy evidence. The prosecution was able to the dates and times when the two rape incidents were
establish that the ₱3 Million deposit in the spouses' bank committed.
account was the proceeds of their loan from the Bank of
Philippine Islands (BPI). Exhibit J, which is a BPI ML instruction Between the accused-appellant's alibi and denial, and the
sheet dated October 31, 1996 in the amount of ₱3,149,840.63 is positive identification and credible testimony of the victim, and
the same amount the accused-appellant claimed to have her two daughters, the Court must give weight to the latter,
entrusted to her wife. Although the accused-appellant denied especially in the absence of ill motive on their part to falsely
being aware of such loan, he admitted that approximately ₱3 testify against the accused-appellant.
Million was spent for the construction of their house. These
pieces of evidence effectively belie the accused appellant's Conclusion
allegation that KKK could not account for the money deposited in
the bank.153
All told, the presumption of innocence endowed an accused-
appellant was sufficiently overcome by KKK's clear,
Anent, KKK's alleged extra-marital affairs, the accused-appellant straightforward, credible, and truthful declaration that on two
failed to explain how Bebs could be his wife KKK when the letter- separate occasions, he succeeded in having sexual intercourse
sender greeted Bebs a "happy birthday" on October 28 while with her, without her consent and against her will. Evidence of
KKK's birthday is June 23. The accused-appellant also did not overwhelming force and intimidation to consummate rape is
present Bebs herself, being a more competent witness to the extant from KKK's narration as believably corroborated by the
existence of the alleged love letters for KKK. He likewise failed, testimonies of MMM and OOO and the physical evidence of
despite promise to do so, to present the original copies of such KKK's tom panties and short pants. Based thereon, the reason
95

and conscience of the Court is morally certain that the accused- WHEREFORE, all the foregoing considered, the Decision dated
appellant is guilty of raping his wife on the nights of October 16 July 9, 2008 of the Court of Appeals in CA-G.R. CR-HC No.
and 17, 1998. 00353 is hereby AFFIRMED with MODIFICATIONS. Accused-
appellant Edgar Jumawan is found GUILTY beyond reasonable
Penalties doubt of two (2) counts of RAPE and is sentenced to suffer the
penalty of reclusion perpetua for each count, without eligibility for
parole. He is further ordered to pay the victim, KKK, the amounts
The Court affirms the penalty of reclusion perpetua, for each of PS0,000.00 as civil indemnity, ₱50,000.00 as moral damages,
count of rape, meted upon the accused-appellant for being in and ₱30,000.00 as exemplary damages, for each count of rape.
accord with Article 266-A in relation to 266-B of the RPC. Further, The award of damages shall earn legal interest at the rate of six
he shall not be eligible for parole pursuant to Section 3 of R.A. percent (6%) per annum from the finality of this judgment until
No. 9346, which states that "persons convicted of offenses fully paid.
punished with reclusion perpetua, or whose sentences will be
reduced to reclusion perpetua, by reason of this Act, shall not be
eligible for parole under Act No. 4180, otherwise known as the SO ORDERED.
Indeterminate Sentence Law, as amended."157
STATUTORY RAPE
The Court sustains the moral damages awarded in the amount
of ₱50,000.00. Moral damages are granted to rape victims G.R. No. 203086 June 11, 2014
without need of proof other than the fact of rape under the
assumption that the victim suffered moral injuries from the PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, Appellee,
experience she underwent.158 vs.
JOSE DALAN y PALDINGAN, Appellant.
The award of civil indemnity is proper; it is mandatory upon the
finding that rape took place.1âwphi1 Considering that the crime DECISION
committed is simple rape, there being no qualifying
circumstances attendant in its commission, the appropriate
amount is ₱50,000.00159 and not ₱75,000.00 as awarded by the BRION, J.:
RTC.
We review the appeal, filed by appellant Jose Dalan, assailing
To serve as an example for public good and in order to deter a the Decision1 of the Court of Appeals (CA) dated January 31,
similar form of domestic violence, an award of ₱30,000.00 as 2012 in CA-G.R. CR-HC No. 04279. The CA affirmed the
exemplary damages is imperative.160 Judgment2 of the Regional Trial Court (RTC), Branch 64, Abatan,
Buguias, Benguet, which found the appellant guilty beyond
reasonable doubt of two counts of statutory rape.
The damages awarded shall earn legal interest at the rate of six
percent (6%) per annum to be reckoned from the date of finality
of this judgment until fully paid.161 In its Judgment dated December 3, 2009, the RTC convicted the
appellant of two counts of statutory rape. It ruled that the
prosecution was able to prove that the appellant inserted his
A Final Note penis in AAA' s vagina on two occasions, namely, in December
2006 and on March 3, 2007. It added that AAA' s testimony was
Rape is a crime that evokes global condemnation because it is corroborated by the medical findings of Dr. Sabrina Florendo.
an abhorrence to a woman's value and dignity as a human The RTC further explained that AAA's mental retardation cannot
being. It respects no time, place, age, physical condition or disqualify her as a witness, since she capably narrated the
social status. It can happen anywhere and it can happen to details of the sexual abuses committed against her by the
anyone. Even, as shown in the present case, to a wife, inside appellant in 2006 and 2007.
her time-honored fortress, the family home, committed against
her by her husband who vowed to be her refuge from cruelty. Accordingly, the RTC sentenced the appellant to suffer the
The herein pronouncement is an affirmation to wives that our penalty of reclusion perpetua, and to indemnify the victim the
rape laws provide the atonement they seek from their sexually amounts of ₱50,000.00 as civil indemnity and ₱50,000.00 as
coercive husbands. moral damages, both for each count of statutory rape.

Husbands are once again reminded that marriage is not a On appeal, the CA affirmed the RTC decision. The CA ruled that
license to forcibly rape their wives. A husband does not own his AAA positively identified the appellant asthe person who raped
wife's body by reason of marriage. By marrying, she does not her on two occasions. According to the CA, AAA was consistent
divest herself of the human right to an exclusive autonomy over in her recollection of the details of the crime. It alsoadded that
her own body and thus, she can lawfully opt to give or withhold AAA’s moderate mental retardation was sufficiently established
her consent to marital coitus. A husband aggrieved by his wife's by the prosecution’s evidence. Finally, the RTC found the
unremitting refusal to engage in sexual intercourse cannot resort appellant’s uncorroborated denial and alibi to be unmeritorious.
to felonious force or coercion to make her yield. He can seek
succor before the Family Courts that can determine whether her
refusal constitutes psychological incapacity justifying an Our Ruling
annulment of the marriage.
We deny the appeal, but modify the designation of the crime
Sexual intimacy is an integral part of marriage because it is the committed and the awarded indemnities.
spiritual and biological communion that achieves the marital
purpose of procreation. It entails mutual love and self-giving and For the charge of rape to prosper,the prosecution must prove
as such it contemplates only mutual sexual cooperation and that (1) the offender had carnal knowledge of a woman, and (2)
never sexual coercion or imposition. he accomplished such act through force or intimidation, or when
she was deprived of reason or otherwise unconscious, or when
The Court is aware that despite the noble intentions of the herein she was under 12 years of age or was demented. 3 Carnal
pronouncement, menacing personalities may use this as a tool knowledge of a woman who is a mental retardate is rape under
to harass innocent husbands. In this regard, let it be stressed Article 266-A, paragraph 1(b) of the Revised Penal Code, as
that safeguards in the criminal justice system are in place to spot amended. Proof of force or intimidation is not necessary, as a
and scrutinize fabricated or false marital rape complaints and mental retardate is not capable of giving consent to a sexual act.
any person who institutes untrue and malicious charges will be What need to be proven are the facts of sexual congress
made answerable under the pertinent provisions of the RPC between the accused and the victim, and the mental retardation
and/or other laws. of the latter.4
96

In the present case, the prosecution established the elements of Aside from erroneously equating AAA’s mental retardation with
rape under Article 266-A of the Revised Penal Code, as dementia, the RTC further justified its conviction of the appellant
amended. First, AAA positively identified the appellant as the of statutory rape on account of the victim’s mental age. The
person who inserted his penis in her vaginain December 2006 gravamen of the offense of statutory rape, as provided for in
and in March 2007; she never wavered in this identification. Article 266-A, paragraph 1(d) of the Revised Penal Code, as
Significantly, AAA’s claim of sexual intercourse had been amended, is the carnal knowledge of a woman below 12 years
corroborated by the medical findings and testimony of Dr. old. To convict an accused of the crime of statutory rape, the
Florendo who testified that the markedattenuated hymen at 6 prosecution must prove: first, the age of the complainant;
o’clock position was most probably caused by an erect penis, second, the identity of the accused; and last but not the least,
while the absent hymen at the 4, 5 and 7 o’clock positions could the carnal knowledge between the accused and the
be caused by repeated sexual experience. complainant.7

Second, the prosecution satisfactorily established the mental In the present case, it is not disputed that AAA was already 17
condition of the victim. Dr. Ekid conducted a battery of tests to years old when she was raped.1âwphi1 In People v.
determine the mental age, social maturity and emotional Butiong,8 we held that carnal knowledge of a female mental
condition of AAA. During trial, Dr. Ekid explained each test, and retardate with the mental age below 12 years of ageis
how she arrived at her conclusions. Accordingly, she found AAA considered as rape of a woman deprived of reason, thus:
to be suffering from moderate retardation, with a mental age of a
person four (4) years and seven (7) months old. It should no longer be debatable that rape of a mental retardate
falls under paragraph 1(b), of Article 266-A, x x x, because the
As the lower courts did, we are unpersuaded by the appellant’s provision refers to a rape of a female "deprived of reason," a
alibi that he was at a farm in Ca-ew, Bulalacao, during the two phrase that refers to mental abnormality, deficiency or
rapes. Aside from being uncorroborated, we point out thatCa-ew retardation.
was just five (5) minutes away from the scene of the rape. In
short, the appellant miserably failed to show that it was We are not unaware that there have been cases 9 where the
physically impossible for him to be at the places where AAA had Court stated that sexual intercourse with a mental retardate
been sexually abused. constitutes statutory rape. Nonetheless, the Court in these cases
affirmed the accused’s conviction for simple rape despite a
The Crime Committed finding that the victim was a mental retardate with a mental age
of a person less than 12 years old.
Article 266-A paragraph 1 of the Revised Penal Code, as
amended, provides: Based on these discussions, we hold that the term statutory rape
should only be confined to situations where the victim of rape is
Article 266-A. Rape, When and How Committed. – Rape is a person less than 12 years of age. If the victim of rape is a
committed – person with mental abnormality, deficiency, or retardation,the
crime committed is simple rape under Article 266-A, paragraph
(1)(b) asshe is considered "deprived of reason" notwithstanding
1) By a man who shall have carnal knowledge of a woman under that her mental age isequivalent to that of a person under 12. In
any of the following circumstances: short, carnal knowledge with a mental retardate whose mental
age is that of a person below 12 years, while akinto statutory
a) Through force, threat or intimidation; rape under Article 266-A, paragraph 1(d), should still be
designated as simple rape under paragraph 1(b). At any rate,
b) When the offended party is deprived of reasonor is proof of force, threat or intimidation is dispensed with in both
otherwise unconscious; statutory rape and rape with a person who is deprived of reason.

c) By means of fraudulent machination or grave abuse With respect to the awarded indemnities, we further direct the
of authority; and appellant to pay the victim ₱30,000.00 as exemplary damages to
set a public example and to protect hapless individuals from
sexual molestation. We also impose a 6% interest on all the
d) When the offended party is under twelve (12) years monetary awards for damages to be reckoned from the date of
of age or is demented, even though none of the finality of this decision until fully paid.10
circumstances mentioned above be present; x x x
WHEREFORE, in light of all the foregoing, the CA decision dated
In the present case, the Information alleged that the victim was January 31, 2012 in CA-G.R. CR-HC No. 04279 is AFFIRMED
"xxx a minor, being seventeen (17) years of age,or below with the following MODIFICATIONS:
eighteen (18) years old at the time of the commission of the
crime, but mentally retarded with a mental age that equates to a
child of four (4) years and seven (7) months," and this (a) the appellant is found guilty of simple rape under
circumstance had been proven during trial. The RTC, however, Article 266-A(1)(b) of the Revised Penal Code, as
equated AAA’s mental retardation with dementia. It is settled that amended;
carnal knowledge of a woman who is a mental retardate is rape
as she is in the same class as a woman deprived of reason or (b) he is further ordered to pay AAA ₱30,000.00 as
otherwise unconscious.5 Our ruling in People v. Monticalvo6 on exemplary damages; and
this point is instructive:
(c) he is ordered to pay interest, at the rate of 6% per
The term "deprived of reason" has been construed to annum on the award of civil indemnity, moral damages,
encompass those suffering from mental abnormality, deficiency and exemplary damages from finality of judgment until
or retardation. The term "demented," on the other hand, means fully paid.
having dementia, which Webster defines as mental deterioration;
also madness, insanity. Dementiahas also been defined in SO ORDERED.
Black’sLaw Dictionary as a "form of mental disorder in which
cognitive and intellectual functions of the mind are prominently
affected; x x x total recovery not possible since cerebral disease R.A. 9262
is involved."Thus, a mental retardate can be classified as a
person "deprived of reason," not one who is "demented" and Republic Act No. 9262 March 08, 2004
carnal knowledge of a mental retardate is considered rape under
subparagraph (b), not subparagraph (d) of Article 266-A(1)of the AN ACT DEFINING VIOLENCE AGAINST WOMEN AND
Revised Penal Code, as amended. [Emphasis in the original] THEIR CHILDREN, PROVIDING FOR PROTECTIVE
97

MEASURES FOR VICTIMS, PRESCRIBING PENALTIES infidelity. It includes causing or allowing the
THEREFORE, AND FOR OTHER PURPOSES victim to witness the physical, sexual or
psychological abuse of a member of the family
Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of to which the victim belongs, or to witness
the Philippines in Congress assembled: pornography in any form or to witness abusive
injury to pets or to unlawful or unwanted
deprivation of the right to custody and/or
SECTION 1. Short Title.- This Act shall be known as the "Anti- visitation of common children.
Violence Against Women and Their Children Act of 2004".
D. "Economic abuse" refers to acts that make
SECTION 2. Declaration of Policy.- It is hereby declared that the or attempt to make a woman financially
State values the dignity of women and children and guarantees dependent which includes, but is not limited to
full respect for human rights. The State also recognizes the need the following:
to protect the family and its members particularly women and
children, from violence and threats to their personal safety and
security. 1. withdrawal of financial support or
preventing the victim from engaging
in any legitimate profession,
Towards this end, the State shall exert efforts to address occupation, business or activity,
violence committed against women and children in keeping with except in cases wherein the other
the fundamental freedoms guaranteed under the Constitution spouse/partner objects on valid,
and the Provisions of the Universal Declaration of Human serious and moral grounds as defined
Rights, the convention on the Elimination of all forms of in Article 73 of the Family Code;
discrimination Against Women, Convention on the Rights of the
Child and other international human rights instruments of which
the Philippines is a party. 2. deprivation or threat of deprivation
of financial resources and the right to
the use and enjoyment of the
SECTION 3. Definition of Terms.- As used in this Act, conjugal, community or property
owned in common;
(a) "Violence against women and their children" refers
to any act or a series of acts committed by any person 3. destroying household property;
against a woman who is his wife, former wife, or against
a woman with whom the person has or had a sexual or
dating relationship, or with whom he has a common 4. controlling the victims' own money
child, or against her child whether legitimate or or properties or solely controlling the
illegitimate, within or without the family abode, which conjugal money or properties.
result in or is likely to result in physical, sexual,
psychological harm or suffering, or economic abuse (b) "Battery" refers to an act of inflicting physical harm
including threats of such acts, battery, assault, coercion, upon the woman or her child resulting to the physical
harassment or arbitrary deprivation of liberty. It and psychological or emotional distress.
includes, but is not limited to, the following acts:
(c) "Battered Woman Syndrome" refers to a
A. "Physical Violence" refers to acts that scientifically defined pattern of psychological and
include bodily or physical harm; behavioral symptoms found in women living in battering
relationships as a result of cumulative abuse.
B. "Sexual violence" refers to an act which is
sexual in nature, committed against a woman (d) "Stalking" refers to an intentional act committed by a
or her child. It includes, but is not limited to: person who, knowingly and without lawful justification
follows the woman or her child or places the woman or
a) rape, sexual harassment, acts of her child under surveillance directly or indirectly or a
lasciviousness, treating a woman or combination thereof.
her child as a sex object, making
demeaning and sexually suggestive (e) "Dating relationship" refers to a situation wherein the
remarks, physically attacking the parties live as husband and wife without the benefit of
sexual parts of the victim's body, marriage or are romantically involved over time and on
forcing her/him to watch obscene a continuing basis during the course of the relationship.
publications and indecent shows or A casual acquaintance or ordinary socialization
forcing the woman or her child to do between two individuals in a business or social context
indecent acts and/or make films is not a dating relationship.
thereof, forcing the wife and
mistress/lover to live in the conjugal (f) "Sexual relations" refers to a single sexual act which
home or sleep together in the same may or may not result in the bearing of a common child.
room with the abuser;
(g) "Safe place or shelter" refers to any home or
b) acts causing or attempting to institution maintained or managed by the Department of
cause the victim to engage in any Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) or by any
sexual activity by force, threat of other agency or voluntary organization accredited by
force, physical or other harm or threat the DSWD for the purposes of this Act or any other
of physical or other harm or coercion; suitable place the resident of which is willing temporarily
to receive the victim.
c) Prostituting the woman or child.
(h) "Children" refers to those below eighteen (18) years
C. "Psychological violence" refers to acts or of age or older but are incapable of taking care of
omissions causing or likely to cause mental or themselves as defined under Republic Act No. 7610. As
emotional suffering of the victim such as but used in this Act, it includes the biological children of the
not limited to intimidation, harassment, victim and other children under her care.
stalking, damage to property, public ridicule or
humiliation, repeated verbal abuse and mental
98

SECTION 4. Construction.- This Act shall be liberally construed (3) Entering or remaining in the dwelling or on
to promote the protection and safety of victims of violence the property of the woman or her child against
against women and their children. her/his will;

SECTION 5. Acts of Violence Against Women and Their (4) Destroying the property and personal
Children.- The crime of violence against women and their belongings or inflicting harm to animals or pets
children is committed through any of the following acts: of the woman or her child; and

(a) Causing physical harm to the woman or her child; (5) Engaging in any form of harassment or
violence;
(b) Threatening to cause the woman or her child
physical harm; (i) Causing mental or emotional anguish, public ridicule
or humiliation to the woman or her child, including, but
(c) Attempting to cause the woman or her child physical not limited to, repeated verbal and emotional abuse,
harm; and denial of financial support or custody of minor
children of access to the woman's child/children.
(d) Placing the woman or her child in fear of imminent
physical harm; SECTION 6. Penalties.- The crime of violence against women
and their children, under Section 5 hereof shall be punished
according to the following rules:
(e) Attempting to compel or compelling the woman or
her child to engage in conduct which the woman or her
child has the right to desist from or desist from conduct (a) Acts falling under Section 5(a) constituting
which the woman or her child has the right to engage attempted, frustrated or consummated parricide or
in, or attempting to restrict or restricting the woman's or murder or homicide shall be punished in accordance
her child's freedom of movement or conduct by force or with the provisions of the Revised Penal Code.
threat of force, physical or other harm or threat of
physical or other harm, or intimidation directed against If these acts resulted in mutilation, it shall be punishable
the woman or child. This shall include, but not limited to, in accordance with the Revised Penal Code; those
the following acts committed with the purpose or effect constituting serious physical injuries shall have the
of controlling or restricting the woman's or her child's penalty of prison mayor; those constituting less serious
movement or conduct: physical injuries shall be punished by prision
correccional; and those constituting slight physical
(1) Threatening to deprive or actually depriving injuries shall be punished by arresto mayor.
the woman or her child of custody to her/his
family; Acts falling under Section 5(b) shall be punished by
imprisonment of two degrees lower than the prescribed
(2) Depriving or threatening to deprive the penalty for the consummated crime as specified in the
woman or her children of financial support preceding paragraph but shall in no case be lower than
legally due her or her family, or deliberately arresto mayor.
providing the woman's children insufficient
financial support; (b) Acts falling under Section 5(c) and 5(d) shall be
punished by arresto mayor;
(3) Depriving or threatening to deprive the
woman or her child of a legal right; (c) Acts falling under Section 5(e) shall be punished by
prision correccional;
(4) Preventing the woman in engaging in any
legitimate profession, occupation, business or (d) Acts falling under Section 5(f) shall be punished by
activity or controlling the victim's own mon4ey arresto mayor;
or properties, or solely controlling the conjugal
or common money, or properties; (e) Acts falling under Section 5(g) shall be punished by
prision mayor;
(f) Inflicting or threatening to inflict physical harm on
oneself for the purpose of controlling her actions or (f) Acts falling under Section 5(h) and Section 5(i) shall
decisions; be punished by prision mayor.

(g) Causing or attempting to cause the woman or her If the acts are committed while the woman or child is
child to engage in any sexual activity which does not pregnant or committed in the presence of her child, the
constitute rape, by force or threat of force, physical penalty to be applied shall be the maximum period of
harm, or through intimidation directed against the penalty prescribed in the section.
woman or her child or her/his immediate family;
In addition to imprisonment, the perpetrator shall (a)
(h) Engaging in purposeful, knowing, or reckless pay a fine in the amount of not less than One hundred
conduct, personally or through another, that alarms or thousand pesos (P100,000.00) but not more than three
causes substantial emotional or psychological distress hundred thousand pesos (300,000.00); (b) undergo
to the woman or her child. This shall include, but not be mandatory psychological counseling or psychiatric
limited to, the following acts: treatment and shall report compliance to the court.

(1) Stalking or following the woman or her child SECTION 7. Venue.- The Regional Trial Court designated as a
in public or private places; Family Court shall have original and exclusive jurisdiction over
cases of violence against women and their children under this
(2) Peering in the window or lingering outside law. In the absence of such court in the place where the offense
the residence of the woman or her child; was committed, the case shall be filed in the Regional Trial Court
where the crime or any of its elements was committed at the
option of the compliant.
99

SECTION 8. Protection Orders.- A protection order is an order (i) Restitution for actual damages caused by the
issued under this act for the purpose of preventing further acts of violence inflicted, including, but not limited to, property
violence against a woman or her child specified in Section 5 of damage, medical expenses, childcare expenses and
this Act and granting other necessary relief. The relief granted loss of income;
under a protection order serve the purpose of safeguarding the
victim from further harm, minimizing any disruption in the victim's (j) Directing the DSWD or any appropriate agency to
daily life, and facilitating the opportunity and ability of the victim provide petitioner may need; and
to independently regain control over her life. The provisions of
the protection order shall be enforced by law enforcement
agencies. The protection orders that may be issued under this (k) Provision of such other forms of relief as the court
Act are the barangay protection order (BPO), temporary deems necessary to protect and provide for the safety
protection order (TPO) and permanent protection order (PPO). of the petitioner and any designated family or
The protection orders that may be issued under this Act shall household member, provided petitioner and any
include any, some or all of the following reliefs: designated family or household member consents to
such relief.
(a) Prohibition of the respondent from threatening to
commit or committing, personally or through another, Any of the reliefs provided under this section shall be
any of the acts mentioned in Section 5 of this Act; granted even in the absence of a decree of legal
separation or annulment or declaration of absolute
nullity of marriage.
(b) Prohibition of the respondent from harassing,
annoying, telephoning, contacting or otherwise
communicating with the petitioner, directly or indirectly; The issuance of a BPO or the pendency of an
application for BPO shall not preclude a petitioner from
applying for, or the court from granting a TPO or PPO.
(c) Removal and exclusion of the respondent from the
residence of the petitioner, regardless of ownership of
the residence, either temporarily for the purpose of SECTION 9. Who may file Petition for Protection Orders. – A
protecting the petitioner, or permanently where no petition for protection order may be filed by any of the following:
property rights are violated, and if respondent must
remove personal effects from the residence, the court (a) the offended party;
shall direct a law enforcement agent to accompany the
respondent has gathered his things and escort (b) parents or guardians of the offended party;
respondent from the residence;

(c) ascendants, descendants or collateral relatives


(d) Directing the respondent to stay away from within the fourth civil degree of consanguinity or affinity;
petitioner and designated family or household member
at a distance specified by the court, and to stay away
from the residence, school, place of employment, or (d) officers or social workers of the DSWD or social
any specified place frequented by the petitioner and workers of local government units (LGUs);
any designated family or household member;
(e) police officers, preferably those in charge of women
(e) Directing lawful possession and use by petitioner of and children's desks;
an automobile and other essential personal effects,
regardless of ownership, and directing the appropriate (f) Punong Barangay or Barangay Kagawad;
law enforcement officer to accompany the petitioner to
the residence of the parties to ensure that the petitioner
(g) lawyer, counselor, therapist or healthcare provider of
is safely restored to the possession of the automobile
the petitioner;
and other essential personal effects, or to supervise the
petitioner's or respondent's removal of personal
belongings; (h) At least two (2) concerned responsible citizens of
the city or municipality where the violence against
women and their children occurred and who has
(f) Granting a temporary or permanent custody of a
personal knowledge of the offense committed.
child/children to the petitioner;

SECTION 10. Where to Apply for a Protection Order. –


(g) Directing the respondent to provide support to the
Applications for BPOs shall follow the rules on venue under
woman and/or her child if entitled to legal support.
Section 409 of the Local Government Code of 1991 and its
Notwithstanding other laws to the contrary, the court
implementing rules and regulations. An application for a TPO or
shall order an appropriate percentage of the income or
PPO may be filed in the regional trial court, metropolitan trial
salary of the respondent to be withheld regularly by the
court, municipal trial court, municipal circuit trial court with
respondent's employer for the same to be automatically
territorial jurisdiction over the place of residence of the petitioner:
remitted directly to the woman. Failure to remit and/or
Provided, however, That if a family court exists in the place of
withhold or any delay in the remittance of support to the
residence of the petitioner, the application shall be filed with that
woman and/or her child without justifiable cause shall
court.
render the respondent or his employer liable for indirect
contempt of court;
SECTION 11. How to Apply for a Protection Order. – The
application for a protection order must be in writing, signed and
(h) Prohibition of the respondent from any use or
verified under oath by the applicant. It may be filed as an
possession of any firearm or deadly weapon and order
independent action or as incidental relief in any civil or criminal
him to surrender the same to the court for appropriate
case the subject matter or issues thereof partakes of a violence
disposition by the court, including revocation of license
as described in this Act. A standard protection order application
and disqualification to apply for any license to use or
form, written in English with translation to the major local
possess a firearm. If the offender is a law enforcement
languages, shall be made available to facilitate applications for
agent, the court shall order the offender to surrender his
protections order, and shall contain, among other, the following
firearm and shall direct the appropriate authority to
information:
investigate on the offender and take appropriate action
on matter;
(a) names and addresses of petitioner and respondent;
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(b) description of relationships between petitioner and The parties may be accompanied by a non-lawyer advocate in
respondent; any proceeding before the Punong Barangay.

(c) a statement of the circumstances of the abuse; SECTION 15. Temporary Protection Orders. – Temporary
Protection Orders (TPOs) refers to the protection order issued by
(d) description of the reliefs requested by petitioner as the court on the date of filing of the application after ex
specified in Section 8 herein; parte determination that such order should be issued. A court
may grant in a TPO any, some or all of the reliefs mentioned in
this Act and shall be effective for thirty (30) days. The court shall
(e) request for counsel and reasons for such; schedule a hearing on the issuance of a PPO prior to or on the
date of the expiration of the TPO. The court shall order the
(f) request for waiver of application fees until hearing; immediate personal service of the TPO on the respondent by the
and court sheriff who may obtain the assistance of law enforcement
agents for the service. The TPO shall include notice of the date
(g) an attestation that there is no pending application for of the hearing on the merits of the issuance of a PPO.
a protection order in another court.
SECTION 16. Permanent Protection Orders. – Permanent
If the applicants is not the victim, the application must be Protection Order (PPO) refers to protection order issued by the
accompanied by an affidavit of the applicant attesting to (a) the court after notice and hearing.
circumstances of the abuse suffered by the victim and (b) the
circumstances of consent given by the victim for the filling of the Respondents non-appearance despite proper notice, or his lack
application. When disclosure of the address of the victim will of a lawyer, or the non-availability of his lawyer shall not be a
pose danger to her life, it shall be so stated in the application. In ground for rescheduling or postponing the hearing on the merits
such a case, the applicant shall attest that the victim is residing of the issuance of a PPO. If the respondents appears without
in the municipality or city over which court has territorial counsel on the date of the hearing on the PPO, the court shall
jurisdiction, and shall provide a mailing address for purpose of appoint a lawyer for the respondent and immediately proceed
service processing. with the hearing. In case the respondent fails to appear despite
proper notice, the court shall allow ex parte presentation of the
An application for protection order filed with a court shall be evidence by the applicant and render judgment on the basis of
considered an application for both a TPO and PPO. the evidence presented. The court shall allow the introduction of
any history of abusive conduct of a respondent even if the same
was not directed against the applicant or the person for whom
Barangay officials and court personnel shall assist applicants in the applicant is made.
the preparation of the application. Law enforcement agents shall
also extend assistance in the application for protection orders in
cases brought to their attention. The court shall, to the extent possible, conduct the hearing on
the merits of the issuance of a PPO in one (1) day. Where the
court is unable to conduct the hearing within one (1) day and the
SECTION 12. Enforceability of Protection Orders. – All TPOs TPO issued is due to expire, the court shall continuously extend
and PPOs issued under this Act shall be enforceable anywhere or renew the TPO for a period of thirty (30) days at each
in the Philippines and a violation thereof shall be punishable with particular time until final judgment is issued. The extended or
a fine ranging from Five Thousand Pesos (P5,000.00) to Fifty renewed TPO may be modified by the court as may be
Thousand Pesos (P50,000.00) and/or imprisonment of six (6) necessary or applicable to address the needs of the applicant.
months.
The court may grant any, some or all of the reliefs specified in
SECTION 13. Legal Representation of Petitioners for Protection Section 8 hereof in a PPO. A PPO shall be effective until revoked
Order. – If the woman or her child requests in the applications for by a court upon application of the person in whose favor the
a protection order for the appointment of counsel because of order was issued. The court shall ensure immediate personal
lack of economic means to hire a counsel de parte, the court service of the PPO on respondent.
shall immediately direct the Public Attorney's Office (PAO) to
represent the petitioner in the hearing on the application. If the
PAO determines that the applicant can afford to hire the services The court shall not deny the issuance of protection order on the
of a counsel de parte, it shall facilitate the legal representation of basis of the lapse of time between the act of violence and the
the petitioner by a counsel de parte. The lack of access to family filing of the application.
or conjugal resources by the applicant, such as when the same
are controlled by the perpetrator, shall qualify the petitioner to Regardless of the conviction or acquittal of the respondent, the
legal representation by the PAO. Court must determine whether or not the PPO shall become
final. Even in a dismissal, a PPO shall be granted as long as
However, a private counsel offering free legal service is not there is no clear showing that the act from which the order might
barred from representing the petitioner. arise did not exist.

SECTION 14. Barangay Protection Orders (BPOs); Who May SECTION 17. Notice of Sanction in Protection Orders. – The
Issue and How. - Barangay Protection Orders (BPOs) refer to the following statement must be printed in bold-faced type or in
protection order issued by the Punong Barangay ordering the capital letters on the protection order issued by the Punong
perpetrator to desist from committing acts under Section 5 (a) Barangay or court:
and (b) of this Act. A Punong Barangay who receives
applications for a BPO shall issue the protection order to the "VIOLATION OF THIS ORDER IS PUNISHABLE BY LAW."
applicant on the date of filing after ex parte determination of the
basis of the application. If the Punong Barangay is unavailable to SECTION 18. Mandatory Period For Acting on Applications For
act on the application for a BPO, the application shall be acted Protection Orders – Failure to act on an application for a
upon by any available Barangay Kagawad. If the BPO is issued protection order within the reglementary period specified in the
by a Barangay Kagawad the order must be accompanied by an previous section without justifiable cause shall render the official
attestation by the Barangay Kagawad that the Punong or judge administratively liable.
Barangay was unavailable at the time for the issuance of the
BPO. BPOs shall be effective for fifteen (15) days. Immediately
after the issuance of an ex parte BPO, the Punong Barangay or SECTION 19. Legal Separation Cases. – In cases of legal
Barangay Kagawad shall personally serve a copy of the same on separation, where violence as specified in this Act is alleged,
the respondent, or direct any barangay official to effect is Article 58 of the Family Code shall not apply. The court shall
personal service. proceed on the main case and other incidents of the case as
soon as possible. The hearing on any application for a protection
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order filed by the petitioner must be conducted within the SECTION 27. Prohibited Defense. – Being under the influence of
mandatory period specified in this Act. alcohol, any illicit drug, or any other mind-altering substance
shall not be a defense under this Act.
SECTION 20. Priority of Application for a Protection Order. – Ex
parte and adversarial hearings to determine the basis of SECTION 28. Custody of children. – The woman victim of
applications for a protection order under this Act shall have violence shall be entitled to the custody and support of her
priority over all other proceedings. Barangay officials and the child/children. Children below seven (7) years old older but with
courts shall schedule and conduct hearings on applications for a mental or physical disabilities shall automatically be given to the
protection order under this Act above all other business and, if mother, with right to support, unless the court finds compelling
necessary, suspend other proceedings in order to hear reasons to order otherwise.
applications for a protection order.
A victim who is suffering from battered woman syndrome shall
SECTION 21. Violation of Protection Orders. – A complaint for a not be disqualified from having custody of her children. In no
violation of a BPO issued under this Act must be filed directly case shall custody of minor children be given to the perpetrator
with any municipal trial court, metropolitan trial court, or of a woman who is suffering from Battered woman syndrome.
municipal circuit trial court that has territorial jurisdiction over the
barangay that issued the BPO. Violation of a BPO shall be SECTION 29. Duties of Prosecutors/Court Personnel. –
punishable by imprisonment of thirty (30) days without prejudice Prosecutors and court personnel should observe the following
to any other criminal or civil action that the offended party may duties when dealing with victims under this Act:
file for any of the acts committed.
a) communicate with the victim in a language
A judgement of violation of a BPO ma be appealed according to understood by the woman or her child; and
the Rules of Court. During trial and upon judgment, the trial court
may motu proprio issue a protection order as it deems necessary
without need of an application. b) inform the victim of her/his rights including legal
remedies available and procedure, and privileges for
indigent litigants.
Violation of any provision of a TPO or PPO issued under this Act
shall constitute contempt of court punishable under Rule 71 of
the Rules of Court, without prejudice to any other criminal or civil SECTION 30. Duties of Barangay Officials and Law Enforcers. –
action that the offended party may file for any of the acts Barangay officials and law enforcers shall have the following
committed. duties:

SECTION 22. Applicability of Protection Orders to Criminal (a) respond immediately to a call for help or request for
Cases. – The foregoing provisions on protection orders shall be assistance or protection of the victim by entering the
applicable in impliedly instituted with the criminal actions necessary whether or not a protection order has been
involving violence against women and their children. issued and ensure the safety of the victim/s;

SECTION 23. Bond to Keep the Peace. – The Court may order (b) confiscate any deadly weapon in the possession of
any person against whom a protection order is issued to give a the perpetrator or within plain view;
bond to keep the peace, to present two sufficient sureties who
shall undertake that such person will not commit the violence (c) transport or escort the victim/s to a safe place of
sought to be prevented. their choice or to a clinic or hospital;

Should the respondent fail to give the bond as required, he shall (d) assist the victim in removing personal belongs from
be detained for a period which shall in no case exceed six (6) the house;
months, if he shall have been prosecuted for acts punishable
under Section 5(a) to 5(f) and not exceeding thirty (30) days, if (e) assist the barangay officials and other government
for acts punishable under Section 5(g) to 5(I). officers and employees who respond to a call for help;

The protection orders referred to in this section are the TPOs (f) ensure the enforcement of the Protection Orders
and the PPOs issued only by the courts. issued by the Punong Barangy or the courts;

SECTION 24. Prescriptive Period. – Acts falling under Sections (g) arrest the suspected perpetrator wiithout a warrant
5(a) to 5(f) shall prescribe in twenty (20) years. Acts falling under when any of the acts of violence defined by this Act is
Sections 5(g) to 5(I) shall prescribe in ten (10) years. occurring, or when he/she has personal knowledge that
any act of abuse has just been committed, and there is
SECTION 25. Public Crime. – Violence against women and their imminent danger to the life or limb of the victim as
children shall be considered a public offense which may be defined in this Act; and
prosecuted upon the filing of a complaint by any citizen having
personal knowledge of the circumstances involving the (h) immediately report the call for assessment or
commission of the crime. assistance of the DSWD, social Welfare Department of
LGUs or accredited non-government organizations
SECTION 26. Battered Woman Syndrome as a Defense. – (NGOs).
Victim-survivors who are found by the courts to be suffering from
battered woman syndrome do not incur any criminal and civil Any barangay official or law enforcer who fails to report the
liability notwithstanding the absence of any of the elements for incident shall be liable for a fine not exceeding Ten Thousand
justifying circumstances of self-defense under the Revised Penal Pesos (P10,000.00) or whenever applicable criminal, civil or
Code. administrative liability.

In the determination of the state of mind of the woman who was SECTION 31. Healthcare Provider Response to Abuse – Any
suffering from battered woman syndrome at the time of the healthcare provider, including, but not limited to, an attending
commission of the crime, the courts shall be assisted by expert physician, nurse, clinician, barangay health worker, therapist or
psychiatrists/ psychologists. counselor who suspects abuse or has been informed by the
victim of violence shall:
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(a) properly document any of the victim's physical, SECTION 37. Hold Departure Order. – The court shall expedite
emotional or psychological injuries; the process of issuance of a hold departure order in cases
prosecuted under this Act.
(b) properly record any of victim's suspicions,
observations and circumstances of the examination or SECTION 38. Exemption from Payment of Docket Fee and
visit; Other Expenses. – If the victim is an indigent or there is an
immediate necessity due to imminent danger or threat of danger
(c) automatically provide the victim free of charge a to act on an application for a protection order, the court shall
medical certificate concerning the examination or visit; accept the application without payment of the filing fee and other
fees and of transcript of stenographic notes.
(d) safeguard the records and make them available to
the victim upon request at actual cost; and SECTION 39. Inter-Agency Council on Violence Against Women
and Their Children (IAC-VAWC). In pursuance of the
abovementioned policy, there is hereby established an Inter-
(e) provide the victim immediate and adequate notice of Agency Council on Violence Against Women and their children,
rights and remedies provided under this Act, and hereinafter known as the Council, which shall be composed of
services available to them. the following agencies:

SECTION 32. Duties of Other Government Agencies and (a) Department of Social Welfare and Development
LGUs – Other government agencies and LGUs shall establish (DSWD);
programs such as, but not limited to, education and information
campaign and seminars or symposia on the nature, causes,
incidence and consequences of such violence particularly (b) National Commission on the Role of Filipino Women
towards educating the public on its social impacts. (NCRFW);

It shall be the duty of the concerned government agencies and (c) Civil Service Commission (CSC);
LGU's to ensure the sustained education and training of their
officers and personnel on the prevention of violence against (d) Commission on Human rights (CHR)
women and their children under the Act.
(e) Council for the Welfare of Children (CWC);
SECTION 33. Prohibited Acts. – A Punong Barangay, Barangay
Kagawad or the court hearing an application for a protection (f) Department of Justice (DOJ);
order shall not order, direct, force or in any way unduly influence
he applicant for a protection order to compromise or abandon
any of the reliefs sought in the application for protection under (g) Department of the Interior and Local Government
this Act. Section 7 of the Family Courts Act of 1997 and Sections (DILG);
410, 411, 412 and 413 of the Local Government Code of 1991
shall not apply in proceedings where relief is sought under this (h) Philippine National Police (PNP);
Act.
(i) Department of Health (DOH);
Failure to comply with this Section shall render the official or
judge administratively liable. (j) Department of Education (DepEd);

SECTION 34. Persons Intervening Exempt from Liability. – In (k) Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE); and
every case of violence against women and their children as
herein defined, any person, private individual or police authority
or barangay official who, acting in accordance with law, responds (l) National Bureau of Investigation (NBI).
or intervenes without using violence or restraint greater than
necessary to ensure the safety of the victim, shall not be liable These agencies are tasked to formulate programs and projects
for any criminal, civil or administrative liability resulting therefrom. to eliminate VAW based on their mandates as well as develop
capability programs for their employees to become more
SECTION 35. Rights of Victims. – In addition to their rights under sensitive to the needs of their clients. The Council will also serve
existing laws, victims of violence against women and their as the monitoring body as regards to VAW initiatives.
children shall have the following rights:
The Council members may designate their duly authorized
(a) to be treated with respect and dignity; representative who shall have a rank not lower than an assistant
secretary or its equivalent. These representatives shall attend
Council meetings in their behalf, and shall receive emoluments
(b) to avail of legal assistance form the PAO of the as may be determined by the Council in accordance with existing
Department of Justice (DOJ) or any public legal budget and accounting rules and regulations.
assistance office;

SECTION 40. Mandatory Programs and Services for Victims.


(c) To be entitled to support services form the DSWD – The DSWD, and LGU's shall provide the victims temporary
and LGUs' shelters, provide counseling, psycho-social services and /or,
recovery, rehabilitation programs and livelihood assistance.
(d) To be entitled to all legal remedies and support as
provided for under the Family Code; and The DOH shall provide medical assistance to victims.

(e) To be informed of their rights and the services SECTION 41. Counseling and Treatment of Offenders. – The
available to them including their right to apply for a DSWD shall provide rehabilitative counseling and treatment to
protection order. perpetrators towards learning constructive ways of coping with
anger and emotional outbursts and reforming their ways. When
SECTION 36. Damages. – Any victim of violence under this Act necessary, the offender shall be ordered by the Court to submit
shall be entitled to actual, compensatory, moral and exemplary to psychiatric treatment or confinement.
damages.
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SECTION 42. Training of Persons Involved in Responding to SECTION 48. Separability Clause. – If any section or provision
Violence Against Women and their Children Cases. – All of this Act is held unconstitutional or invalid, the other sections or
agencies involved in responding to violence against women and provisions shall not be affected.
their children cases shall be required to undergo education and
training to acquaint them with: SECTION 49. Repealing Clause – All laws, Presidential decrees,
executive orders and rules and regulations, or parts thereof,
a. the nature, extend and causes of violence against inconsistent with the provisions of this Act are hereby repealed
women and their children; or modified accordingly.

b. the legal rights of, and remedies available to, victims SECTION 50. Effectivity – This Act shall take effect fifteen (15)
of violence against women and their children; days from the date of its complete publication in at least two (2)
newspapers of general circulation.
c. the services and facilities available to victims or
survivors; G.R. No. 179267 June 25, 2013

d. the legal duties imposed on police officers to make JESUS C. GARCIA, Petitioner,
arrest and to offer protection and assistance; and vs.
THE HONORABLE RAY ALAN T. DRILON, Presiding Judge,
e. techniques for handling incidents of violence against Regional Trial Court-Branch 41, Bacolod City, and ROSALIE
women and their children that minimize the likelihood of JAYPE-GARCIA, for herself and in behalf of minor children,
injury to the officer and promote the safety of the victim namely: JO-ANN, JOSEPH EDUARD, JESSE ANTHONE, all
or survivor. surnamed GARCIA, Respondents.

The PNP, in coordination with LGU's shall establish an education DECISION


and training program for police officers and barangay officials to
enable them to properly handle cases of violence against women PERLAS-BERNABE, J.:
and their children.
Hailed as the bastion of Christianity in Asia, the Philippines
SECTION 43. Entitled to Leave. – Victims under this Act shall be boasts of 86.8 million Filipinos- or 93 percent of a total
entitled to take a paid leave of absence up to ten (10) days in population of 93.3 million – adhering to the teachings of Jesus
addition to other paid leaves under the Labor Code and Civil Christ.1 Yet, the admonition for husbands to love their wives as
Service Rules and Regulations, extendible when the necessity their own bodies just as Christ loved the church and gave
arises as specified in the protection order. himself up for her2 failed to prevent, or even to curb, the
pervasiveness of violence against Filipino women. The National
Any employer who shall prejudice the right of the person under Commission on the Role of Filipino Women (NCRFW) reported
this section shall be penalized in accordance with the provisions that, for the years 2000-200