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Republic of the Philippines

National Capital Judicial Region


Regional Trial Court
Branch 106
Quezon City

PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES,


Plaintiff,

- versus - Crim. Case No.: Q-12-175140


For: Rape

ARDYL SORONGON,
Accused.
x-----------------------------------------x

OPPOSITION TO DEMURRER

The Plaintiff, PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, through the undersigned


counsel, opposes the DEMURRER OF EVIDENCE submitted by the
defendant ARDYL SORONGON.

I. FACTUAL BACKGROUND

Plaintiff Cassie Lee is the girlfriend of Chave Sorongon. Chave


Sorongon is the brother of the accused, Ardyl Sorongon. On the night of
February 13, 2014, Ardyl, Chave and Cassie were supposed to meet at
Ocean City Restaurant at Smallville Complex, Madurraio, Iloilo City. The
accused planned for the dinner. At around 8:45pm Cassie arrived at the
restaurant but only Ardyl was there. Chave canceled last minute due to
work related reasons. Ardyl and Cassie agreed to continue with the dinner
without Chave. Ardyl used to have a crush on Cassie. But Cassie was already
the girlfriend of his brother. So they continued their dinner without malice.
Shortly before they left, Cassie went to the wash room. When she came
back, Ardyl insisted that she finish her drinks. The drinks were spiked by
Ardyl with a sedative drug. When they were about to leave the restaurant,
Ardyl offered to take cassie home. On their way to the car, Cassie felt dizzy
and nauseous. When they got to the car, Cassie felt weaker and her
dizziness worsened. After several minutes, Cassie felt the car stop and she
was transferred to the back seat. After a while, Cassie saw Ardyl positioning
himself on top of Cassie. And after that Cassie totally lost consciousness.
The morning after Cassie realized that she had been drugged the night
before and raped by Ardyl.

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II. ARGUMENTS/DISCUSSION

The Demurrer is completely without merit. A demurrer to evidence is


an allegation that, admitting the facts of the preceding pleading to be true,
as stated by the party making it, he has yet shown no cause why the party
demurring should be compelled by the court to proceed further. (Dans, Jr.
vs. People, 91 SCAD 207). A demurrer admits the truth of all material facts
plead, giving the complaint a reasonable interpretation, reading it as a
whole and its parts in their context. The demurrant improperly argue the
facts and include facts that are not part of the complaint and testimonial
evidence presented during the trial. All allegations must be taken as true on
a demurrer. Sufficient facts were alleged for the commission of rape and
the demurrant should take these allegations as true.

The considerations in rape cases are: (1) An accusation for rape can
be made with facility; it is difficult to prove but more difficult for the person
though innocent, to disprove the same; (2) In view of the intrinsic nature of
the crime of rape where only two persons are usually involved, the
testimony of the complainant must be scrutinized with extreme caution;
and (3) The evidence for the prosecution must stand or fall on its own
merits and cannot be allowed to draw strength from the weakness of the
evidence for the defense. (People vs San Diego 328 SCRA 477).

What is decisive in a rape charge is the complainant’s positive


identification of the accused as the malefactor. (People vs. Romua, 272
SCRA 818). The plaintiff has positively identified the accused Ardyl
Sorongon in open court. The plaintiff has pointed her finger at the accused
to positively identify him in open court. There is no better way for a victim
to get a good look at her rapist than to see him face to face. (People vs.
Candelario, 311 SCRA 475). The plaintiff has also testified that she was able
to identify the accused on top of her and on the act of doing the crime
before losing consciousness.

The prosecution has shown through clear and positive evidence that
the plaintiff was drugged during that night. And that the accused was the
one who introduced the drugs into her drinks. One of the witnesses for the
prosecution is the sole waiter for the restaurant during the night of the
rape incident. He has testified that he saw the accused put a white pill in
the drinks of the victim. When asked why he can vividly remember the
things that happened during that night, he answered that it was his first
night assigned as a waiter. It is a natural human reaction to be excited and
remember every first experience in their lives and this waiter was not an
exception. Furthermore, the waiter, Dave Capada, recalled that there were
only two tables that night. It would not be unusual for a waiter to recall

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every single detail of his customers, especially if there were only two tables
for the night.

Assuming for argument’s sake that the plaintiff was indeed not
drugged, consideration should be given to her testimony of being dizzy and
feeling nauseous. The plaintiff has testified that she has informed the
accused that she felt dizzy and nauseous while they were about to ride the
car. The plaintiff repeatedly informed the accused about her drowsiness
when he transferred her to the back seat of the car. The fact that the
accused still managed to have his way with the victim while she was in a
state of drowsiness proves that he has committed rape. He who lies with a
woman, while the latter is in a state of unconsciousness is guilty of rape.
Drowsiness is defined as the state of being drowsy, that is ready to fall
asleep or half-asleep. A person who is half asleep and therefore in a stupor
of drowsiness or semi-consciouness is not capable of giving full, informed,
intelligent and voluntary consent. (People vs. Salarza GR L-117682 August
18, 1997). Carnal knowledge of a woman who is asleep constitutes rape.
(People vs. Ramos 345 SCRA 178).

When the testimony of a rape victim is consistent with the medical


findings, sufficient basis exists to warrant a conclusion that the essential
requisite of carnal knowledge has thereby been established. (People vs.
Motos 317 SCRA 96). The prosecution has offered as witness, Dr. Maricel
Peniero, of the Iloilo Mission Hospital to testify on her medical findings of
the rape victim. Along with the medical certificate she has shown in court,
Dr. Maricel Peniero, has proven that rape was committed.

In cases where the victim is raped in a state of unconsciousness, the


fact of sexual assault and the identity of the assailant can be established
from the events preceding or following the victim’s loss of consciousness.
(People vs. Villanos, 337 SCRA 78). The testimony of Dave Capada, the
waiter, would show that it was the accused that was with the victim on the
night of February 13, 2014. To prove the rape, the victim, even if
unconscious when the rape was allegedly committed, should describe
circumstances constituting an unbroken chain of events that would indicate
that the offense was actually perpetrated by the accused. (People vs.
Alfeche 294 SCRA 352). The prosecution was able to show an unbroken
chain of events through positive testimony. The testimony of the waiter
showing what time the accused and the victim left the restaurant and the
testimony of the victim’s landlady showing the time that the accused and
victim arrived at her boarding house. The landlady has also testified that
she has seen the accused carrying the victim. Her testimony shows that the
victim was unconscious when she was brought home. When the landlady
was asked why she was able to vividly recall the events that night, she
answered that she was keen on keeping an eye out for her sole tenant.

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Where the victim, at the time of her penile invasion, was unconscious, it
could be safely concluded that she had not given free and voluntary
consent to her defilement, whether before or during the sexual act. (People
vs. Mahinay, 302 SCRA 455). The prosecution successfully discharged its
purpose to show that the testimonies of the witnesses deserve full faith
and credit.

Conviction for rape may be based on circumstantial evidence when


the victim cannot testify on the actual commission of the rape because she
was unconscious when the act was committed. (People vs. Tolentino, 352
SCRA; People vs Moreno, 220 SCRA 292; People vs. Perez, 307 SCRA 276).
There have already been cases in which conviction for rape was upheld on
purely circumstantial evidence. (People vs. Tabarangao, 303 SCRA 623). The
prosecution maintains that it has shown proof beyond reasonable doubt
that the accused should be held guilty for the crime of rape. Albeit that
fact, the quantum of evidence for these types cases may only be through
circumstantial evidence.

III. CONCLUSION

In denying a demurrer to evidence, the court need not state that the
prosecution has established “proof beyond reasonable doubt” – it is
sufficient that words of similar import, such as those stated in the instant
case (“the essential elements of the crime charged”) be present to indicate
that there was a finding of guilt beyond reasonable doubt of the accused.
(Antonio vs. CA, 273 SCRA 328). The prosecution was able to show that all
the elements for the crime charged were present. And that positive
identification of the accused was established. The prosecution has
successfully discharged its onus to show that the general considerations for
an accusation for rape were in favor of the plaintiff and against the
accused.

Based upon the foregoing, the prosecution has shown that the
evidence is sufficient to prove beyond reasonable doubt, or through
circumstantial evidence, that the accused committed the crime of rape
while unconscious against the complainant. It is respectfully prayed that
the Honorable Court overrule the Demurrer to Evidence presented by the
accused.

Other reliefs, just and equitable, are likewise prayed for.


Iloilo City, Philippines, December 5, 2015.

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Atty. Phillip Owen Binayas
Assistant City Prosecutor

Atty. Dionne Glenn Salvilla


Private Prosecutor

Copy Furnished:

Atty. Fermin Sornito Jr.


Counsel for the Accused

ATTY. Cecil Ochavo


Counsel for the Accused