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Prof. Joselito Guianan Chan's The Labor Code of the Philippines, Annotated Labor Standards & Social Legislation Volume I of a 3-Volume Series 2019 Edition (3rd Revised Edition)
 

 
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UNITED STATES SUPREME COURT JURISPRUDENCE
 

 
PHILIPPINE SUPREME COURT JURISPRUDENCE
 

   
January-2004 Jurisprudence                 

  • G.R. Nos. 103055-56 - January 26, 2004 - ROYAL CARGO CORPORATION, Petitioner, v. CIVIL AERONAUTICS BOARD, Respondent.

  • G.R. Nos. 103055-56 - January 26, 2004 - ROYAL CARGO CORPORATION, Petitioner, v. CIVIL AERONAUTICS BOARD, Respondent.

  • G.R. Nos. 106615, 108591, 109452, 109978 & 139379 - January 15, 2004 - SPOUSES ELIGIO P. MALLARI and MARCELINA I. MALLARI, Petitioners, v. IGNACIO ARCEGA, PERCASIO CATACUTAN, BEN GARCIA, ALFREDO DE GUZMAN, MARIETA JACINTO, CELESTINO MAGAT, VICENTE MALLARI

  • G.R. Nos. 114967-68 : January 26, 2004 - PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, Appellee, v. CRISPIN BILLABER y MATBANUA, Appellant.

  • G.R. No. 118027 - January 29, 2004 - PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, Appellee, v. RICARDO BALATAZO, Appellant.

  • G.R. No. 118030 - January 15, 2004 - PROVIDENT INSURANCE CORP., Petitioner, v. HONORABLE COURT OF APPEALS and AZUCAR SHIPPING CORP., Respondents.

  • G.R. No. 120384 - January 13, 2004 - PHILIPPINE EXPORT AND FOREIGN LOAN GUARANTEE CORPORATION, Petitioner-Appellant, v. PHILIPPINE INFRASTRUCTURES, INC., PHILIPPINE BRITISH ASSURANCE CO., INC., THE SOLID GUARANTY, INC., B.F. HOMES, INC., PILAR DEVELOPMENT

  • G.R. No. 120587 - January 20, 2004 - MILAGROS M. BARCO, as the Natural Guardian and Guardian Ad Litem of MARY JOY ANN GUSTILO, Petitioner, v. COURT OF APPEALS (SPECIAL SIXTEENTH DIVISION), REGIONAL TRIAL COURT (BR. 133-MAKATI), NCJR; THE LOCAL CIVIL REGIS

  • G.R. Nos. 121213 and 121216-13 - January 13, 2004 - PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, Appellee, v. BUTCHOY DE LA TORRE and FE DE LA TORRE, Appellants.

  • G.R. Nos. 122114-17 - January 20, 2004 - PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, Appellee, v. EDUARDO LIMOS y DE VERA, Appellant.

  • G.R. No. 122249 - January 29, 2004 - REYNALDO, TELESFORO, REMEDIOS, ALFREDO and BELEN, all surnamed AGUIRRE, VICENTA, HORACIO and FLORENCIO, all surnamed MAGTIBAY and LEONILA, CECILIA, ANTONIO, and VENANCIO, all surnamed MEDRANO, and ZOSIMA QUIAMBAO, Peti

  • G.R. No. 122767 - January 20, 2004 - PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, Appellee, v. JOSEPH CAJURAO, Appellant.

  • G.R. No. 125758 : January 20, 2004 - HEIRS OF SUSANA DE GUZMAN TUAZON, represented by CIRILO TUAZON, Petitioners, v. HON. COURT OF APPEALS and MA. LUISA VICTORIO, ALBERTO GUANIO, JAIME B. VICTORIO, INES MOLINA, ERLINDA V. GREGORIO, VISITACION V. GERVACIO,

  • G.R. No. 126006 - January 29, 2004 - LAPULAPU FOUNDATION, INC. and ELIAS Q. TAN, Petitioners, v. COURT OF APPEALS (Seventeenth Division) and ALLIED BANKING CORP., Respondents

  • G.R. No. 125966 - January 13, 2004 - PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, Appellee, v. JUAN FACTAO alias "BOYET," ALBERT FRANCIS LABRODA alias " ABET," and TIRSO SERVIDAD, Appellants.

  • G.R. No. 126153 - January 14, 2004 - PHILIPPINE NATIONAL BANK, Petitioner, v. HONORABLE COURT OF APPEALS, and ATTY. MORDENO CUA, Respondents.

  • G.R. No. 127469 - January 15, 2004 - PHILIPPINE BANKING CORPORATION, Petitioner, v. COURT OF APPEALS and LEONILO MARCOS, Respondents.

  • G.R. No. 127492 - January 16, 2004 - PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, Appellee, v. DIONISIO SANTOS, Appellant.

  • G.R. No. 128254 - January 16, 2004 - HEIRS OF POMPOSA SALUDARES represented by ISABEL DATOR, Petitioners, v. COURT OF APPEALS, JOSE DATOR and CARMEN CALIMUTAN, Respondents.

  • G.R. No. 127882 - January 27, 2004 - LA BUGAL-B'LAAN TRIBAL ASSOCIATION, INC., represented by its Chairman F'LONG MIGUEL M. LUMAYONG, WIGBERTO E. TAŅADA, PONCIANO BENNAGEN, JAIME TADEO, RENATO R. CONSTANTINO, JR., F'LONG AGUSTIN M. DABIE, ROBERTO P. AMLOY

  • G.R. No. 128609 : January 29, 2004 - DOUGLAS F. ANAMA, Petitioner, v. COURT OF APPEALS, PHILIPPINE SAVINGS BANK, SPS. TOMAS CO & SATURNINA BARIA and REGISTER OF DEEDS, METRO MANILA, DISTRICT II, Respondents.

  • G.R. No. 129008 - January 13, 2004 - TEODORA A. RIOFERIO, VERONICA O. EVANGELISTA assisted by her husband ZALDY EVANGELISTA, ALBERTO ORFINADA, and ROWENA O. UNGOS, assisted by her husband BEDA UNGOS, Petitioners, v.COURT OF APPEALS, ESPERANZA P. ORFINADA,

  • G.R. No. 130586 - January 29, 2004 - PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, Appellee, v.FRANCISCO BLANCAFLOR, Appellant.

  • G.R. No. 130886 - January 29, 2004 - COMMONWEALTH INSURANCE CORPORATION, Petitioner, v. COURT OF APPEALS and RIZAL COMMERCIAL BANKING CORPORATION, Respondents.

  • G.R. Nos. 132310 & 143968-69 - January 20, 2004 - PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, Appellee, v. FELIPE DEMATE y LOGANA alias Dodong Morales and DANTE MORALES (At Large), Appellants.

  • G.R. No. 133194-95 and 141539 : January 29, 2004 - PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, Appellee, v. ROMEO VALDEZ, Appellant.

  • G.R. No. 133542 : January 29, 2004 - FRANCISCO DEE, represented in this Instrument by FORTUNATO T. DEE, Petitioner, v. COURT OF APPEALS, HON. REYNALDO G. ROS, In his capacity as Presiding Judge, Branch 80, Regional Trial Court, Morong, Rizal, and RODOLFO

  • G.R. No. 133710 - January 13, 2004 - PHILIPPINE BANKING CORPORATION, Petitioner, v. COURT OF APPEALS and AMALIO L. SARMIENTO, doing business under the firm name "A.L. SARMIENTO CONSTRUCTION," Respondents.

  • G.R. No. 135249 : January 16, 2004 - ATTY. ORLANDO SALVADOR for and in behalf of the PRESIDENTIAL AD HOC FACT-FINDING COMMITTEE ON BEHEST LOANS, Petitioner, v. HON. ANIANO DESIERTO, as Ombudsman, RAFAEL A. SISON, CESAR ZALAMEA, ALICIA Ll. REYES, ARISTON S

  • G.R. No. 134766 - January 16, 2004 - PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, Appellee, v. ELPEDIO TORRES y CAETE, Appellant.

  • G.R. No. 135619 - January 15, 2004 - ADONIS ARADILLOS and ALBINO GALABO, Petitioners, v. COURT OF APPEALS and the PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, represented by the Office of the Solicitor General, Respondents.

  • People vs. Genosa : 135981 : January 15, 2004 : J. Ynares-Santiago : En Banc : Dissenting Opinion

  • G.R. No. 136114. January 22, 2004 - LANDBANK OF THE PHILIPPINES, Petitioner, v. CONTINENTAL WATCHMAN AGENCY INCORPORATED AND THE COURT OF APPEALS, Respondents.

  • G.R. No. 135981 - January 15, 2004 - PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, Appellee, v. MARIVIC GENOSA, Appellant.

  • G. R. Nos. 137542-43. January 20, 2004 - PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, Appellee, v. REYNAN SANTIAGO y CASTILLO, Appellant.

  • G.R. No. 139068 - January 16, 2004 - MALAYANG SAMAHAN NG MANGGAGAWA SA BALANCED FOOD, NILO LETADA, FERNANDO FALLERA, DANILO ESCARIO, BENEDICTO CARREON, CAMILO AGUILA, GERRY BAUTISTA, FRIDAY MENDOZA, MARINO TAYOTO, PEPE TUBELLO, ROLANDO SERRANO, MATIAS BAQ

  •  





     
     

    People vs. Genosa : 135981 : January 15, 2004 : J. Ynares-Santiago : En
Banc : Dissenting Opinion

      People vs. Genosa : 135981 : January 15, 2004 : J. Ynares-Santiago : En Banc : Dissenting Opinion

    DISSENTING OPINION

    YNARES-SANTIAGO, J.:

    In convicting Marivic Genosa of the crime of parricide, our esteemed colleague Mr. Justice Artemio V. Panganiban found that there was no factual basis to conclude that Marivic was suffering from Battered Woman Syndrome (BWS) at the time she took the life of her husband. With due respect, I register my dissent.

    The novel theory of "Battered Woman Syndrome" is recognized in foreign jurisprudence as a form of self-defense. It operates upon the premise that a woman who has been cyclically abused and controlled over a period of time develops a fearful state of mind. Living in constant danger of harm or death, she knows that future beatings are almost certain to occur and will escalate over time. Her intimate knowledge of the violent nature of her batterer makes her alert to when a particular attack is forthcoming, and when it will seriously threaten her survival. Trapped in a cycle of violence and constant fear, it is not unlikely that she would succumb to her helplessness and fail to perceive possible solutions to the problem other than to injure or kill her batterer. She is seized by fear of an existing or impending lethal aggression and thus would have no opportunity beforehand to deliberate on her acts and to choose a less fatal means of eliminating her sufferings.1

    As exhaustively discussed in the ponencia, the "Battered Woman Syndrome" has three phases, to wit: (1) the tension-building phase, where minor batterings in the form of verbal or slight physical abuse occurs. Here, the woman tries to pacify the batterer through a show of kind, nurturing behavior; or by simply staying out of his way; (2) the acute battering incident phase which is characterized by brutality, destructiveness and sometimes, death. The battered woman usually realizes that she cannot reason with him and that resistance would only exacerbate her condition; and (3) the tranquil period, where the couple experience a compound relief and the batterer may show a tender and nurturing behavior towards his partner.

    Contrary to the findings in the ponencia, the defense was able to establish the occurrence on more than one occasion of the "tension-building phase" of the cycle. The various testimonies of appellant's witnesses clearly reveal that she knew exactly when she would once again be subjected to acute battery. Her cousin, Ecel Arano, testified that she often asked the latter to sleep in her house as she was afraid every time her husband came home drunk. Clearly, whenever appellant requested for Arano's company, she was experiencing a tension-building phase. The barangay captain, Panfilo Tero, also testified that appellant sought his help two months before she killed her husband, again demonstrating that she was in the tension-building phase and was attempting to prevent another incident of acute battery. Appellant presented evidence to prove that the tension-building phase would occur whenever her husband would go out looking for other women, would lose at cockfights or would come home drunk. She often tried to ignore her husband's attitude or, as testified to by some witnesses for the prosecution, even shouted back, fought off or even injured her husband during the tension-building phase, if only to prevent the onset of acute battery.

    Appellant was able to perfectly describe the tension-building phase of the cycle immediately prior to the death of her husband, i.e., when she knew or felt that she was going to be killed by the deceased. She could not possibly have testified with clarity as to prior tension-building phases in the cycle as she had never tried to kill her husband before this time.

    It was shown by the testimonies of appellant and even witnesses for the prosecution that appellant would seek shelter in her mother's or her father's house after an acute battering incident, after which would begin the process of begging for forgiveness, promises of change in behavior and return to the conjugal home, only for the same cycle to begin all over again.

    To require appellant to prove the state of mind of the deceased, as seems to be required in the ponencia, would mean that no person would ever be able to prove self-defense in a battered woman case. Appellant could not possibly prove whether the deceased felt provoked into battering by any act or omission of appellant. She cannot possibly prove that she felt herself to be the sole support of the deceased's emotional stability and well-being. Nevertheless, appellant felt trapped and helpless in the relationship as, in the end, she resorted to killing her husband as no one could or did help her, whether out of fear or insensitivity, during the violent marriage she endured.

    The "acute battering incident stage" was well demonstrated by the severe beatings suffered by Marivic in the hands of the deceased as well as the threats to kill her using a bolo or a cutter.2 The physical abuses occurred at least 3 times a week in the 11 miserable years of their marriage,3 six incidents of which were documented by the 1990-1995 medical records of Marivic. They included, among others, hematoma, contusion, and pain on the breasts; multiple contusions and trauma on the different parts of her body even during her pregnancy in 1995.4 The tranquil period underwent by Marivic was shown by the repeated kiss and make-up episodes of their relationship. On more than 5 occasions, Marivic ran to her parents house after violent fights with the deceased only to forgive the latter every time he would fetch her and promise to change.5

    All these recurring phases of cycle of violence, repentance and forgiveness developed a trauma in the mind of Marivic making her believe that a forthcoming attack from the deceased would cause her death. This state of mind of Marivic was revealed in her testimony given way back in 1998, before she was examined by experts on BWS. Unaware of the significance of her declarations, she candidly narrated how she felt immediately before she killed the deceased, thus -

    ATTY. TABUCANON

    Q So you said that he dragged you towards the drawer?

    A Yes, sir.

    Q What is there in the drawer?

    A I was aware that it was a gun.

    xxx xxx xxx

    Q What happened when you were brought to the drawer?

    A He dragged me towards the drawer and he was about to open the drawer but he could not open it because he did not have the key. [T]hen he pulled his wallet which contained a blade about 3 inches long and I was aware that he was going to kill me and I smashed his arm and then the wallet and the blade fell. The one he used to open the drawer I saw, it was a pipe about that long, and when he was about to pick-up the wallet and the blade, I smashed him then I ran to the room, and on that very moment everything on my mind was pity on myself, then the feeling I had on that very moment was the same when I was admitted in PHILPHOS Clinic, I was about to vomit.

    xxx xxx xxx6

    Q What else happened?

    A When I was in the room, I felt the same thing like what happened before I was admitted in PHILPHOS Clinic, I was about to vomit. I know my blood pressure has raised. I was frightened I was about to die because of my blood pressure.

    xxx xxx xxx

    A Considering all the physical sufferings that I've been through him, I took pity on myself and I felt I was about to die also because of my blood pressure and the baby, so I got the gun and shot him.7

    It must be stressed that the defense of "Battered Woman Syndrome" was not raised by Marivic before the lower court but only here on automatic review. This makes the foregoing testimony more worthy of great weight and credence considering that the same could not have been cunningly given to suit or conform to the profile of a battered woman.

    Moreover, there was indeed basis for Marivic to fear death because of her medical history. Dr. Dino Caing testified that he treated Marivic for hypertension due to domestically related emotional stress on 23 separate occasions. The latest one was on November 6, 1995 when she suffered from severe hypertension and had a blood pressure of 180/120 on the 8th month of her pregnancy.8

    Furthermore, Dr. Natividad A. Dayan, a clinical psychologist and an expert on BWS who examined Marivic, assessed the effects of the repeated violence on the latter as follows:

    A What I remember. .. was it was more than ten years that she was suffering from emotional anguish. There were a lot of instance of abuses,. .. emotional abuse...verbal abuse and... physical abuse. The husband had very meager income, she was the one who was practically the bread earner of the family. The husband was involved in a lot of vices, going out with barkadas, drinking, even womanizing, being involved in cockfighting and in going home very angry which... triggered a lot of physical abuse. She also had the experience of taunting from the husband for the reason that the husband even accused her of infidelity, the husband was saying that the child she was carrying was not his own. So she was very angry, she was at the same time very depressed because she. .. [felt] almost like living in purgatory or even in hell when it was happening day in and day out.

    Xxx xxx xxx

    Q And what was it that triggered. .. that tragedy in your opinion?

    A I think for several weeks, she was already having all those tensions, all those anxieties, they were not enough, that the husband was even going to cockfighting x x x

    A She was angry with him, he was angry with her and I think he dragged her and even spun her around. She tried to fight him so there was a lot of fight and when she was able to escape, she went to another room and she locked herself with the children. And when the husband was for a while very angry he calms down then and then (sic). But I remember before that the husband was looking for the gun and I think he was not able to open the cabinet because she had the key. So during that time, I remember, that she was very much afraid of him, so when the husband calmed down and he was asleep, all she was concerned was to end up her misery, to save her child which she was carrying and to save her two children. I believe that somehow she's not rational.9

    xxx xxx xxx

    PROS. TRUYA

    Q Mrs. Witness, being an expert witness, giving more the facts and circumstances on this case that the books you studied in the expertise in line and in the 77 hour contact with appellant Mrs. Genosa, could you say that this is not ordinary self-defense but a survival on her part?

    A Yes, sir.

    Q To what she did to her husband (sic) ?

    A Yes, sir this is not an ordinary self-defense, but this [is] a need to survive, a need to survive with her two sons and [the] child she's bringing.

    Q Had she not able to kill her husband, would she still be in the very short moment with the victim (sic) ?

    A If she did not do that she believes that she will be the one who would be killed.10

    There is no doubt therefore that Marivic was afflicted with the "Battered Woman Syndrome" and that it was an apprehension of death and the instinct to defend her and her unborn child's life that drove her to kill her husband.

    The ponente further refused to sustain the self-defense proffered by Marivic because there was allegedly no aggression or danger posed on her life by the victim at the time she attacked the latter. Again, I beg to disagree.

    Traditionally, in order that self-defense may be appreciated, the unlawful aggression or the attack must be imminent and actually in existence. This interpretation must, however, be re-evaluated vis-a-vis the recognized inherent characteristic of the psyche of a person afflicted with the "Battered Woman Syndrome." As previously discussed, women afflicted by this syndrome live in constant fear for their life and thus respond in self-defense. Once BWS and an impending danger based on the conduct of the deceased in previous battering episodes are established, actual occurrence of an assault is no longer a condition sine qua non before self defense may be upheld. Threatening behavior or communication can satisfy the required imminence of danger. As stated in the ponencia, to require the battered person to await an obvious deadly attack before she can defend her life would amount to sentencing her to murder by installment.

    In the case at bar, the cycle of violence perpetrated by the deceased, which culminated in the physical assaults and an attempt to shoot Marivic when she was 8 months pregnant, took the place of unlawful aggression, thus entitling her to a complete self defense even if there was no actual employment of violence by the deceased at the time of the killing. Marivic had every reason to believe that the deceased would kill her that night not only because the latter was verbally threatening to kill her while attempting to get a gun from the drawer, but more importantly because the deceased wounded her on the wrist with a bolo, and because of the deceased's previous conduct of threatening to cut her throat with a cutter which he kept in his wallet. Quoted hereunder are the relevant testimonies of Marivic -

    A When I arrived home, he was already in his usual behavior.

    xxx xxx xxx

    A He was drunk again, he was yelling in his usual unruly behavior.

    xxx xxx xxx

    A He was nagging. .. me at that time and I just ignore[d] him because I want to avoid trouble for fear that he will beat me again. Perhaps he was disappointed because I just ignore[d] hi[s] provocation and he switch off the light and I said to him, "why did you switch off the light when the children were there." At that time I was also attending to my children who were doing their assignments. He was angry with me for not answering his challenge, so he went to the kitchen and g[o]t a bolo and cut the antenna wire to stop me from watching television.

    xxx xxx xxx

    A He switch[ed] off the light and the children were shouting because they were scared and he was already holding a bolo.

    Q How do you describe this bolo?

    A 1 1/2 feet.

    xxx xxx xxx

    Q You said the children were scared, what else happened as Ben was carrying that bolo?

    A He was about to attack me so I ran to the room.

    Q What do you mean that he was about to attack you?

    A When I attempted] to run he held my hands and he whirled me and I fell [on] the bedside.11

    xxx xxx xxx

    COURT

    To the witness

    xxx xxx xxx

    Q The bolo that you said which Ben was holding at that time, [was] it a bolo or a knife?

    A Bolo.

    Q Were you wounded or were there inflictions on your body when he was holding and trying to frighten you [with] that bolo?

    A No, only here.

    COURT INTERPRETER

    (The witness pointed to her wrist).

    COURT

    To the witness

    Q You were demonstrating a motion, whirling, did your husband really whirl you?

    A Yes, your Honor.

    Q How did he whirl you?

    A Whirled around.

    Q Just like spinning.

    xxx xxx xxx

    Q Where did he whirl you, was it inside the bedroom or outside?

    A In our bedroom.

    Q Then after the whirling what happened?

    A He kicked my ass and then I screamed.12

    xxx xxx xxx

    Q You screamed for help and he left, do you know where he was going?

    A Outside perhaps to drink more.

    Q When he left what did you do...?

    A I packed all his clothes.

    Q What was your reason in packing his clothes?

    A I wanted him to leave us.13

    xxx xxx xxx

    A I was frightened that my husband would hurt me, so I packed all his things then on the following day I will leave, I was afraid and I want to make sure I would deliver my baby safely.14

    xxx xxx xxx

    A After a couple of hours, he went back again and got angry with me for packing his clothes, then he dragged me again outside of the bedroom holding my neck.

    ATTY. TABUCANON

    Q You said that when Ben came back to your house, he dragged you? How did he drag... you?

    COURT INTERPRETER

    (The witness demonstrated to the Court by using her right hand flexed forcibly in her front neck)

    A And he dragged me towards the door backwards.

    ATTY. TABUCANON

    Q Where did he bring you?

    A Outside the bedroom and he wanted to get something and then he kept shouting at me that "you might as well be killed so there will be nobody to nag me.

    Q So you said that he dragged you towards the drawer?

    A Yes, sir.

    Q What is there in the drawer?

    A I was aware that it was a gun.

    xxx xxx xxx

    Q What happened when you were brought to the drawer?

    A He dragged me towards the drawer and he was about to open the drawer but he could not open it because he did not have the key. [T]hen he pulled his wallet which contained a blade about 3 inches long and I was aware that he was going to kill me and I smashed his arm and then the wallet and the blade fell. The one he used to open the drawer I saw, it was a pipe about that long, and when he was about to pick-up the wallet and the blade, I smashed him then I ran to the room, and on that very moment everything on my mind was pity on myself, then the feeling I had on that very moment was the same when I was admitted in PHILPHOS Clinic, I was about to vomit.

    xxx xxx xxx

    Q You said that he dropped the blade, for the record will you please

    describe this blade about 3 inches long, how does it look like?

    A Three (3) inches long and 1/2 inch wide.

    Q Is it a flexible blade?

    A It's a cutter.

    Q How do you describe the blade, is it sharp both edges?

    A Yes, because he once used it to me.

    Q How did he do it?

    A He wanted to cut my throat.

    Q With the same blade?

    A Yes sir, that was the object used when he intimidate me.15

    RE-DIRECT BY ATTY. TABUCANON

    Q In other words, there were two (2) incidents, the first incident and then he left and then two (2) hours after he came back?

    A Yes, sir.

    Q And the whirling happened in the first incident?

    A Yes, sir.

    Q And the dragging with arms flexed in her neck and on that blade

    happened on the second incident (sic) ?

    A Ye, sir.

    xxx xxx xxx

    COURT

    To the witness

    Q Why, what is that blade about?

    A A cutter about 3 inches long.

    Q Who used that?

    A Ben.

    Q He used that on you?

    A He scared me on that (sic).

    xxx xxx xxx

    Q But he did not hit you with that?

    A Yes, because I managed to run every time he scared (sic). 16

    There are many things which cannot be proved by direct evidence. One of this is state of mind. In the case at bar, there is more than sufficient physical evidence presented by the appellant from which her mental state can be inferred. The prosecution did not object to the presentation of these physical and testimonial pieces of evidence, namely, the medical records of 23 instances of domestic violence-related injuries and the testimonies of neighbors, cousins and even the barangay captain. Indeed, no person would endure 23 reported instances of beatings if she were planning to kill her spouse in the first place. The majority need not worry that women around the country will mastermind the killings of their husbands and then use this Decision to bolster their attempts to employ the BWS defense.

    Moreover, as found in the ponencia, appellant should be allowed the mitigating circumstance of passion and obfuscation. This, at the very least, supports a finding that the acts of violence and battery committed by the deceased were illegal and unlawful and were committed immediately before appellant could recover her natural equanimity. But what is the natural equanimity of a battered woman? Appellant was not a normal married woman. She can never be in a state of natural equanimity as she was in a constant state of alertness and hypersensitivity to the next phase of acute battery. The esteemed ponente also correctly found that the appellant acted with diminished will-power. However, he failed to go further. In the case of People v. Javier, 17 it was held:

    Since accused-appellant has already admitted to the killing, it is incumbent upon him to prove the claimed mitigating circumstance of illness. In this case, however, aside from the testimony of the accused that his mind went blank when he killed his wife due to loss of sleep, no medical finding was presented regarding his mental condition at the time of the killing. This Court can hardly rely on the bare allegations of accused-appellant, nor on mere presumptions and conjectures. No clear and convincing evidence was shown that accused-appellant was suffering an illness which diminished his exercise of will-power at the time of the killing.18

    In the case at bar, appellant was allowed and did in fact present clear and convincing evidence that she was a battered woman for 13-14 years and that she suffered from the "Battered Woman Syndrome". Expert testimony was presented and admitted to this effect, such that the ponente ably discussed the causes and effects of the syndrome. To ignore the testimony and the evidence thus presented is to make impossible the proof of mental state. Evidence as to the mental state need not be also "beyond reasonable doubt.

    Verily, the requirement of threatening behavioral pattern of the batterer in previous violent episodes was sufficiently satisfied in the present case. This, juxtaposed to Marivic's affliction with BWS justified the killing of the deceased. The danger posed or created in her mind by the latter's threats using bladed weapons, bred a state of fear, where under the circumstances, the natural response of the battered woman would be to defend herself even at the cost of taking the life of the batterer.

    The ponencia's acknowledgement of "Battered Woman Syndrome" as a valid form of self-defense, is a noble recognition of the plight of, and a triumph for battered women who are trapped in a culture of silence, shame, and fear. This would however be an empty victory if we deliberately close our eyes to the antecedents of this case. The facts are simple. Marivic was suffering from the "Battered Woman Syndrome" and was defending herself when she killed her husband. Her acquittal of the charge of parricide is therefore in order.

    IN VIEW WHEREOF, I vote to ACQUIT Marivic Genosa.


    Endnotes:

    1 People v. Genosa, G.R. No. 135981, 29 September 2000, 341 SCRA493, 498.

    2 TSN, August 6, 1998, pp. 22-30; 47-49; 50-51.

    3 Id., pp.8-13, 18.

    4 Exhibit 1, Compilation of Exhibits, p. 44.

    5 TSN, August 6, 1998, pp. 12-13; 36-37.

    6 Id.,pp. 27-28.

    7 Id.,pp. 31-32.

    8 TSN, August 5, 1998, pp. 21-31.

    9 TSN, January 15, 2001, pp. 38-40.

    10 Id.,pp. 74-75.

    11 TSN, August 6, 1998, pp. 22-25.

    12 Id., pp. 47-49.

    13 Id.,pp. 25-26.

    14 Id., p.34.

    15 Id.,pp. 26-30.

    16 Id.,pp. 50-51.

    17 G.R. No. 130654, 28 July 1999.

    18 Supra,at 581-582.

    People vs. Genosa : 135981 : January 15, 2004 : J. Ynares-Santiago : En
Banc : Dissenting Opinion


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