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PEOPLE v. ARNOLD MALONES

This case has been cited 41 times or more.

2013-03-20
PEREZ, J.
We emphasize that in rape cases the accused may be convicted based solely on the testimony of the victim, provided that such testimony is credible, natural, convincing and consistent with human nature and the normal course of things.[11]
2012-03-21
BRION, J.
We reject the appellant's claim that he was gathering coconuts in Sitio Pasakayon on the date and time of the rapes. It is settled that the defense of alibi is inherently weak and easily fabricated, particularly when it is corroborated only by the wife of the appellant, as in this case. In order for the defense of alibi to prosper, it is not enough to prove that the appellant was somewhere else when the offense was committed, but it must likewise be demonstrated that he was so far away that it was not possible for him to have been physically present at the place of the crime or its immediate vicinity at the time of its commission.[9]
2012-03-07
VELASCO JR., J.
The presence of healed or fresh hymenal laceration is not an element of rape.[34] However, it is the best physical evidence of forcible defloration.[35] Thus, the findings of Dr. Reyes corroborate and support the testimony of AAA.
2011-10-11
SERENO, J.
On the other hand, the accused miserably failed to satisfy the requirements for an alibi to be considered plausible.  For the defense of alibi to prosper, the accused must prove not only that he was at some other place at the time the crime was committed, but that it was likewise impossible for him to be at the locus criminis at the time of the alleged crime.[7]
2011-09-12
VELASCO JR., J.
It should be stressed at the outset that while it is not a trier of facts and is not wont to winnow and re-asses anew the evidence adduced below, it still behooves the Court, in criminal cases falling under its review jurisdiction pursuant to Article VIII, Section 5(2) of the Constitution,[14] to take a careful and hard look at the testimony given in rape cases. The Court is constantly mindful of the pernicious consequences that a rape charge bears on both the accused and the private complainant.[15] It exposes both to humiliation, hatred and anxieties, more so if the element of kinship comes into the picture.  And to stress familiar dicta, an accusation for rape can be made with facility, albeit difficult to prove, but more difficult for the accused, though innocent, to disprove, and that conviction in rape cases usually rests solely on the basis of the testimony of the offended party.[16] This attitude of caution and circumspection becomes all the more compelling in this case in light of the recantation of a key witness, the victim herself.
2011-02-09
BERSAMIN, J.
Secondly, the CA and the RTC rejected the alibi of Tuy. We agree with their rejection. To begin with, his absence from the scene of the murder was not firmly established considering that he admitted that he could navigate the distance between Brgy. Olango (where he was supposed to be) and Brgy. Bani (where the crime was committed) in an hour by paddle boat and in less than that time by motorized banca. Also, eyewitness Severino positively identified him as having hacked his father.[6] The failure of Tuy to prove the physical impossibility of his presence at the crime scene negated his alibi.[7]
2010-12-14
ABAD, J.
Indeed, alibi cannot be sustained where it is not only without credible corroboration, but also where it does not, on its face, demonstrate the physical impossibility of the accused's presence at the place and time of the commission of the crime.[139]  Against positive evidence, alibi becomes most unsatisfactory.  Alibi cannot prevail over the positive identification of a credible witness.[140]  Appellant Webb was placed at the crime scene by Alfaro who positively identified him as the one (1) who plotted and committed the rape of Carmela, and later fatally stabbed her, her mother and sister, aided by or in concert with Lejano and Ventura. Gaviola and Cabanacan gave corroborating testimonies that appellant Webb was here in the country, as he was just in his house at BF Homes Subdivision Phase III, at least a few weeks prior to and on June 29 to 30, 1991.
2010-09-15
PEREZ, J.
In the same breath, AAA's failure to shout for help or make an outcry at the time appellant is raping her does not in anyway cast doubt on her credibility and on the truthfulness of her testimony.  Also, such failure of AAA does not negate rape. The workings of the human mind under emotional stress are unpredictable, such that people react differently to startling situations.[27]  It is also borne by the records that AAA failed to shout or make an outcry because of appellant's threat that she would be punched if she would so shout. Notably, AAA was just 10 years old at the time appellant raped her while appellant was already a full-grown 30-year old adult male.  As described by the trial court, AAA has a "fragile-looking physical built (sic)" while appellant has a "robust physique."[28] Such physical disparity alone between appellant and AAA was enough reason for the latter to easily succumb to the former's vile desires.  And, much more, there was threat of harm upon her.  Besides, the absence of struggle or an outcry from the victim is immaterial to the rape of a child below 12 years of age because the law presumes that such a victim, on account of her tender age, does not and cannot have a will of her own.[29]
2010-08-09
PEREZ, J.
The fact of sexual congress between AAA and the appellant was also supported by the medical findings of healed hymenal lacerations at 3 o'clock and 9 o'clock positions which, according to Dr. Antillon-Malimas, could have resulted from sexual intercourse.  When the victim's testimony is corroborated by the physician's finding of penetration, there is sufficient foundation to conclude the existence of the essential requisite of carnal knowledge.  Laceration, whether healed or fresh, is the best physical evidence of forcible defloration.[46]  Thus, the said medical findings, together with the straightforward testimony of AAA, even strengthens her claim of sexual violation by appellant.
2010-05-04
VILLARAMA, JR., J.
Alibi, the plea of having been elsewhere than at the scene of the crime at the time of the commission of the felony, is a plausible excuse for the accused. Let there be no mistake about it. Contrary to the common notion, alibi is in fact a good defense. But to be valid for purposes of exoneration from a criminal charge, the defense of alibi must be such that it would have been physically impossible for the person charged with the crime to be at the locus criminis at the time of its commission, the reason being that no person can be in two places at the same time. The excuse must be so airtight that it would admit of no exception. Where there is the least possibility of accused's presence at the crime scene, the alibi will not hold water.[46]
2010-04-07
PERALTA, J.
As regards petitioner's defense of alibi, well settled is the rule that alibi is an inherently weak defense which cannot prevail over the positive identification of the accused by the victim.[25] Moreover, in order for the defense of alibi to prosper, it is not enough to prove that the petitioner was somewhere else when the offense was committed, but it must likewise be demonstrated that he was so far away that it was not possible for him to have been physically present at the place of the crime or its immediate vicinity at the time of its commission.[26] In the case at bar, it was established that petitioner personally appeared before Engr. Hondrade only on September 1 and 4, 1998. His whereabouts for the two days in between the said dates are unaccounted for. There was no showing that he could not have gone back to Cagayan, committed the crime, and went back to Quezon City during those two days. Petitioner's defense of denial and alibi cannot prevail as against the positive, straightforward and consistent testimony of Rudy that it was petitioner who shot him on the night of September 2, 1998.
2010-02-01
DEL CASTILLO, J.
We stress that in rape cases the accused may be convicted based solely on the testimony of the victim, provided that such testimony is credible, natural, convincing and consistent with human nature and the normal course of things.[15] In this regard, the trial court is in the best position to assess the credibility of the victim, having personally heard her and observed her deportment and manner of testifying during the trial. In the absence of any showing that the trial court overlooked, misunderstood, or misapplied some factor or circumstances of weight that would affect the result of the case, or that the judge acted arbitrarily, the trial court's assessment of credibility deserves the appellate court's highest respect.[16] Here, the appellant fails to persuade us to depart from this principle and to apply the exception.
2010-01-06
LEONARDO-DE CASTRO, J.
Accused-appellant's belabored attempt to characterize the complainant's testimony as being contrary to human experience for failing to shout for help must also fail. The victim's failure to shout for help does not vitiate the credibility of her account. She was only 10 years old at the time of the rape, thus, inexperienced in the ways of the world. This Court has noted in several cases that minors could be easily intimidated and cowed into silence even by the mildest threat against their lives.[23] Although an older person may have shouted for help under the same circumstances, the young victim in the instant case might have been overcome by fear and was not able to shout for help. Indeed, AAA declared in open court that she was afraid when asked why she failed to shout when accused-appellant pulled down her underwear.[24] Be that as it may, the absence of struggle or an outcry from the victim is immaterial to the rape of a child below 12 years of age. The law presumes that such a victim, on account of her tender age, does not and cannot have a will of her own.[25]
2009-12-23
VELASCO JR., J.
Prefatorily, while it is not wont to go over and re-assess the evidence adduced during the trial, more so when the appellate court affirms the findings and conclusions of the trial court, the Court, in criminal cases falling under its review jurisdiction under the Constitution,[13] is nonetheless tasked to assiduously review such cases, as in the instant appeal. Besides, utmost care is required in the review of a decision involving conviction of rape due to the pernicious consequences such conviction bear on both the accused and the offended party.[14]
2009-12-04
BRION, J.
We view this testimony to be clear, convincing and credible considering especially the corroboration it received from the medico-legal report and testimony of Dr. Mendoza. We additionally do not see from the records any indication that AAA's testimony should be seen in a suspicious light. We emphasize that the appellant had been staying in the victim's house for more or less 3 years; he dined with AAA's family and slept with her brothers. There is no plausible reason why AAA would falsely testify against the appellant, imputing on him a crime as grave as rape if the sexual incident did not happen. We have held time and again that the testimonies of rape victims who are young and immature, as in this case, deserve full credence considering that no woman, especially one of tender age, would concoct a story of defloration, allow the examination of her private parts, and subject herself to a public trial if she had not been motivated by the desire to obtain justice for the wrong committed against her.[37]
2009-10-16
CHICO-NAZARIO, J.
or even in places which to many might appear unlikely and high-risk venues for its commission.[31] Rape is not a respecter of place or time.[32] Neither is it necessary for the rape to be committed in an isolated place, for rapists bear no respect for locale and time in carrying out their evil deed. AAA's alleged failure to cry out for help during the time the rape was supposed to have been committed, in spite of the physical proximity of her relatives, or to report the incident to them, did not make her testimony improbable. The argument of the defense that no
2009-08-19
CHICO-NAZARIO, J.
Although AAA reported the incident to her uncle only on 29 September 1995, almost a month after she was ravished, this cannot be taken against her. She was seriously threatened by the malefactor if she told the said occurrence to anyone. Naturally, as a very young girl, she must have had an overpowering fear that prevented her from telling her uncle of her grueling experience in the hands of Bienvenido. It is not uncommon for a young girl to conceal for some time the assault on her virtue.[27] Her initial hesitation may be due to her youth and the molester's threat against her. Besides, rape victims, especially child victims, should not be expected to act the way mature individuals would when placed in such a situation.[28] It is not proper to judge the actions of children who have undergone traumatic experience by the norms of behavior expected from adults under similar circumstances.[29] The range of emotions shown by rape victims is yet to be captured even by calculus.[30] It is, thus, unrealistic to expect uniform reactions from them. Certainly, the Court has not laid down any rule on how a rape victim should behave immediately after she has been violated.[31] This experience is relative and may be dealt with in any way by the victim depending on the circumstances, but her credibility should not be tainted with any modicum of doubt. Indeed, different people react differently to a given stimulus or type of situation, and there is no standard form of behavioral response when one is confronted with a strange or startling or frightful experience.[32] It would be insensitive to expect the victim to act with equanimity and to have the courage and the intelligence to disregard the threat made by Bienvenido. When a rape victim is paralyzed with fear, she cannot be expected to think and act coherently. This is especially true in this case, since AAA was threatened by appellant that she would be killed if ever she would tell anybody about the rape incident.
2009-06-23
CHICO-NAZARIO, J.
[39] People v. Malones, 469 Phil. 301, 326-327 (2004).
2009-06-18
CHICO-NAZARIO, J.
It may appear odd that AAA did not run away from her tormentor. Her conduct of staying with her tormentor and her failure to prevent the repetition of the rape incident should not be interpreted against her.  She was too disturbed and too young to totally comprehend the consequences of the dastardly acts inflicted on her by the appellant. Rape victims, especially child victims, should not be expected to act the way mature individuals would when placed in such a situation.[19]  It is not proper to judge the actions of children who have undergone traumatic experience by the norms of behavior expected from adults under similar circumstances.[20]  The range of emotions shown by rape victims is yet to be captured even by calculus.[21]  It is, thus, unrealistic to expect uniform reactions from rape victims. Certainly, the Court has not laid down any rule on how a rape victim should behave immediately after she has been violated.[22]  This experience is relative and may be dealt with in any way by the victim depending on the circumstances, but her credibility should not be tainted with any modicum of doubt.  Indeed, different people act differently to a given stimulus or type of situation, and there is no standard form of behavioral response when one is confronted with a strange or startling or frightful experience.[23]  It would be insensitive to expect the victim to act with equanimity and to have the courage and the intelligence to disregard the threat made by the appellant. When a rape victim is paralyzed with fear, she cannot be expected to think and act coherently.  This is especially true in this case since AAA was repeatedly threatened by appellant if ever she would tell anybody about the rape incidents.  The threat instilled enormous fear in her, such that she failed to take advantage of any opportunity to escape from the appellant.  Besides, getting away from Rogelio was a task extremely difficult for an 11-year-old girl, because it would be tantamount to leaving her mother and her relatives, fending for herself and perishing in the process.
2009-04-16
QUISUMBING, J.
First. There is no gainsaying that medical evidence is merely corroborative, and is even dispensable, in proving the crime of rape.[25] A medical certificate is not necessary to prove the commission of rape and a medical examination of the victim is not indispensable in a prosecution for rape.[26] In the instant case, the medical evidence showed that AAA has healed hymenal lacerations at 5 o'clock and 6 o'clock positions and a scar tissue in the fossa navicularis. Indeed, this Court has sustained convictions for rape despite the fact that healed, and not fresh, hymenal lacerations were detected after an examination conducted on the same day, the following day, or three days after the commission of the rape.[27] Lacerations, whether healed or fresh, are the best physical evidence of forcible defloration.[28] Thus, the absence of fresh hymenal lacerations does not prove that appellants did not rape AAA.[29] On the contrary, the healed hymenal lacerations confirmed, rather than belied, AAA's claim that appellants have raped her even prior to October 9, 13 and 14, 2000. In fact, Dr. Castillo even testified that it is possible to have a penetration without incurring a new injury.[30]
2009-03-17
VELASCO JR., J.
As a preliminary matter, it should be stressed that while it is not a trier of facts and is not wont to go over and re-assess the evidence adduced during trial, more so when the appellate court joins the trial court in its findings and conclusions, the Court, in criminal cases falling under its review jurisdiction pursuant to Art. VIII, Section 5 (2)(d)[11] of the 1987 Constitution, is tasked to assiduously review such cases, as here. This attitude of circumspection in the review of a decision involving rape conviction becomes all the more necessary owing to the pernicious consequences that such conviction bears on both the accused and the offended party.[12]
2009-03-12
BRION, J.
Moreover, we cannot help but note that the alibi of the accused is totally uncorroborated; only the appellant testified about his presence elsewhere.  Already a weak defense, alibi becomes even weaker when the defense fails to present corroboration. The alibi totally falls if, aside from the lack of corroboration, the accused fails to show the physical impossibility of his presence at the place and time of the commission of the crime.[31]
2009-02-06
BRION, J.
Denial, as a defense, is an inherently weak defense. It cannot prevail over positive identifications, unless supported by strong evidence of lack of guilt.[30] In the context of this case, the appellant's mere denial, unsupported by any other evidence, cannot overcome the child-victim's positive declaration on the identity and involvement of the appellant in the crime attributed to him.[31]
2008-09-12
VELASCO JR., J.
Accused-appellant's arguments deserve scant consideration. Infliction of physical injury is not an essential element of rape.[14] Under Article 266-A of the Revised Penal Code, the gravamen of rape is carnal knowledge of a woman through force, threat, or intimidation against her will or without her consent. What is imperative is that the element of force or intimidation be proven;[15] and force need not always produce physical injuries.[16] Notably, force, violence, or intimidation in rape is a relative term, depending on the age, size, strength, and relationship of the parties.[17]
2008-09-11
CHICO-NAZARIO, J.
A rape charge is a serious matter with pernicious consequences both for the appellant and the complainant; hence, utmost care must be taken in the review of a decision involving conviction of rape.[56] Thus, in the disposition and review of rape cases, the Court is guided by these principles: First, the prosecution has to show the guilt of the accused by proof beyond reasonable doubt or that degree of proof that, to an unprejudiced mind, produces conviction. Second, the evidence for the prosecution must stand or fall on its own merits and cannot draw strength from the weakness of the evidence of the defense. Third, unless there are special reasons, the findings of trial courts, especially regarding the credibility of witnesses, are entitled to great respect and will not be disturbed on appeal. Fourth, an accusation for rape can be made with facility; it is difficult to prove but more difficult for the person accused, though innocent, to disprove. And fifth, in view of the intrinsic nature of the crime of rape, in which only two persons are usually involved, the testimony of the complainant must be scrutinized with extreme caution.[57]
2008-06-17
CHICO-NAZARIO, J.
A rape charge is a serious matter with pernicious consequences both for the appellant and the complainant; hence, utmost care must be taken in the review of a decision involving conviction of rape.[40] Thus, in the disposition and review of rape cases, the Court is guided by these principles: First, the prosecution has to show the guilt of the accused by proof beyond reasonable doubt or that degree of proof that, to an unprejudiced mind, produces conviction. Second, the evidence for the prosecution must stand or fall on its own merits and cannot draw strength from the weakness of the evidence of the defense. Third, unless there are special reasons, the findings of trial courts, especially regarding the credibility of witnesses, are entitled to great respect and will not be disturbed on appeal. Fourth, an accusation of rape can be made with facility; it is difficult to prove but more difficult for the person accused, though innocent, to disprove. And fifth, 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.[41]
2008-04-22
CHICO-NAZARIO, J.
A rape charge is a serious matter with pernicious consequences both for the appellant and the complainant; hence, utmost care must be taken in the review of a decision involving conviction of rape.[36]  Thus, in the disposition and review of rape cases, the Court is guided by these principles: First, the prosecution has to show the guilt of the accused by proof beyond reasonable doubt or that degree of proof that, to an unprejudiced mind, produces conviction.  Second, the evidence for the prosecution must stand or fall on its own merits and cannot draw strength from the weakness of the evidence of the defense.  Third, unless there are special reasons, the findings of trial courts, especially regarding the credibility of witnesses, are entitled to great respect and will not be disturbed on appeal.  Fourth, an accusation for rape can be made with facility; it is difficult to prove but more difficult for the person accused, though innocent, to disprove; and fifth, 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.[37]
2008-04-08
CHICO-NAZARIO, J.
Appellant tries to discredit the victim's testimony by questioning her deportment which was not that of an "outraged woman robbed of her honor." It should be borne in mind, in this connection, that the victim was only a naive thirteen (13)-year old child when the depredation happened to her. Since childhood, she had been longing to experience the love and protection of a father. When she finally found herself under the refuge of her father, it brought the bliss of an answered prayer. This idyllic experience, however, remained a fleeting episode because the person who should shield her from harm and evil was the very same person who wrought malady upon her. Such must be a startling occurrence for her. Behavioral psychology teaches that people react to similar situations dissimilarly.[44] Their reactions to harrowing incidents may not be uniform.[45] AAA's conduct of staying with her tormentor and her failure to prevent the repetition of the rape incident should not be taken against her. She was too disturbed and too young to totally comprehend the consequences of the dastardly acts inflicted on her by the appellant. Rape victims, especially child victims, should not be expected to act the way mature individuals would when placed in such a situation.[46] It is not proper to judge the actions of children who have undergone traumatic experience by the norms of behavior expected from adults under similar circumstances.[47] The range of emotions shown by rape victims is yet to be captured even by calculus.[48] It is, thus, unrealistic to expect uniform reactions from rape victims. Certainly, the Court has not laid down any rule on how a rape victim should behave immediately after she has been violated.[49] This experience is relative and may be dealt with in any way by the victim depending on the circumstances, but her credibility should not be tainted with any modicum of doubt. Indeed, different people act differently to a given stimulus or type of situation, and there is no standard form of behavioral response when one is confronted with a strange or startling or frightful experience.[50] It would be insensitive to expect the victim to act with equanimity and to have the courage and the intelligence to disregard the threat made by the appellant. When a rape victim is paralyzed with fear, she cannot be expected to think and act coherently. This is especially true in this case since AAA was repeatedly threatened by appellant if ever she would tell anybody about the rape incidents. The threat instilled enormous fear in her such that she failed to take advantage of any opportunity to escape from the appellant. Also, as AAA explained, she withstood her father's lechery and stayed with him despite what he did because she wanted to complete her studies until 28 March 1992 when she graduated. Besides, getting away from appellant was a task extremely difficult for a 13-year old girl, alone with the predator in a far-away place, motherless, without any relative to turn to in an hour of need, penniless, and uninformed in the ways of the world. In fact, it was only when a Good Samaritan crossed her path that the victim was able to report to the authorities about her father's spiteful deeds.
2008-01-28
NACHURA, J.
Three basic principles guide the courts in resolving rape cases: (1) an accusation for rape can be made with facility; it is difficult to prove but more difficult for the accused, though innocent, to disprove; (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.[20]
2007-12-17
CHICO-NAZARIO, J.
A rape charge is a serious matter with pernicious consequences both for the appellant and the complainant; hence, utmost care must be taken in the review of a decision involving conviction of rape.[31]  Thus, in the disposition and review of rape cases, the Court is guided by certain principles.  First, the prosecution has to show the guilt of the accused by proof beyond reasonable doubt or that degree of proof that, to an unprejudiced mind, produces conviction.  Second, the evidence for the prosecution must stand or fall on its own merits and cannot draw strength from the weakness of the evidence of the defense.  Third, unless there are special reasons, the findings of trial courts, especially regarding the credibility of witnesses, are entitled to great respect and will not be disturbed on appeal.  Fourth, an accusation for rape can be made with facility; it is difficult to prove but more difficult for the person accused, though innocent, to disprove.  And fifth, in view of the intrinsic nature of the crime of rape, in which only two persons are usually involved, the testimony of the complainant must be scrutinized with extreme caution.[32]
2007-10-26
NACHURA, J.
The Court stresses that conviction or acquittal in a rape case more often than not depends almost entirely on the credibility of the complainant's testimony because of the very nature of this crime. It is usually the victim who alone can testify as to its occurrence. In rape cases, the accused may be convicted solely on the basis of the testimony of the victim, provided that such testimony is credible, natural, convincing and consistent with human nature and the normal course of things.[21] The credibility given by the trial court to the rape victim is an important aspect of evidence which appellate courts can rely on because of its unique opportunity to observe the witnesses, particularly their demeanor, conduct and attitude during direct and cross-examination by counsel. Absent any showing that the trial judge overlooked, misunderstood, or misapplied some facts and circumstances of weight which would affect the result of the case, his assessment of credibility deserves the appellate court's highest respect.[22]
2007-10-26
NACHURA, J.
Q: Around three (3) minutes or five (5) minutes? A: Around five (5) minutes, sir.[27] The above testimony of AAA says everything. Jurisprudence has recognized the inbred modesty of a Filipina, especially a young child, who would be unwilling to allow examination of her private parts, suffer the humiliation of a public trial, endure the ordeal of recounting the details of an assault on her dignity unless her purpose is to bring the perpetrator to the bar of justice and avenge her honor. Testimonies of rape victims who are young and immature demand full credence.[28]
2007-09-05
CHICO-NAZARIO, J.
A rape charge is a serious matter with pernicious consequences both for the appellant and the complainant; hence, utmost care must be taken in the review of a decision involving conviction of rape.[25]  Thus, in the disposition and review of rape cases, the Court is guided by these principles:  First, the prosecution has to show the guilt of the accused by proof beyond reasonable doubt or that degree of proof that, to an unprejudiced mind, produces conviction.  Second, the evidence for the prosecution must stand or fall on its own merits and cannot draw strength from the weakness of the evidence of the defense.  Third, unless there are special reasons, the findings of trial courts, especially regarding the credibility of witnesses, are entitled to great respect and will not be disturbed on appeal.  Fourth, an accusation for rape can be made with facility; it is difficult to prove but more difficult for the person accused, though innocent, to disprove; and Fifth, 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.[26]
2007-06-25
CHICO-NAZARIO, J.
The fact that AAA could not tell whether appellant was naked from waist down during the rape does not succor the latter' cause. Rape victims do not cherish keeping in their memory an accurate account of the manner in which they were sexually violated.[40] Thus, errorless recollection of a harrowing experience cannot be expected of a witness, especially when she is recounting details from an experience so humiliating and painful as rape.[41] In addition, rape victims, especially child victims, should not be expected to act the way mature individuals would when placed in such a situation.[42] Hence, AAA should not and cannot be expected to remember with precision whether appellant was naked from the waist down at the time of the rape. Further, such information is immaterial, as it has nothing to do with the elements of rape.
2007-06-08
CHICO-NAZARIO, J.
A rape charge is a serious matter with pernicious consequences both for the appellant and the complainant; hence, utmost care must be taken in the review of a decision involving conviction of rape.[17] Thus, in reviewing rape cases, the Court is guided by these principles: First, the prosecution has to show the guilt of the accused by proof beyond reasonable doubt or that degree of proof that, to an unprejudiced mind, produces conviction. Second, unless there are special reasons, the findings of trial courts, especially regarding the credibility of witnesses, are entitled to great respect and will not be disturbed on appeal. Third, the disposition of rape cases is governed by the following guidelines: (1) an accusation of rape can be made with facility; it is difficult to prove but more difficult for the person accused, though innocent, to disprove; (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 draw strength from the weakness of the evidence of the defense.[18]
2007-04-27
CALLEJO, SR., J.
Indeed, a rape charge is a serious matter with pernicious consequences both for appellant and complainant; hence, utmost care must be taken in the review of a decision involving a conviction for rape.[34] In reviewing rape cases, this Court has
2006-12-06
CHICO-NAZARIO, J.
Denial is inherently a weak defense as it is negative and self-serving.[43] It cannot prevail over the positive identification and testimony of witnesses unless buttressed by strong evidence of non-culpability.[44] In the case at bar, Ronilo testified that appellant had struck Conrado with a piece of wood on the head. Simplicio declared that appellant was at the crime scene during the attack while Donald stated that shortly before the incident, Conrado was in the company of appellant. Appellant had not presented any evidence to counter the afore-stated testimonies.
2006-10-12
TINGA, J.
Q The injuries are in the labia majora? A Yes, ma'am.[30] Thus, the contention of appellant that there were no lacerations in the vagina does not merit any consideration.  In that regard, it has been held that the medical examination of the victim is merely corroborative in character and is not an element of rape.[31]  Likewise, a freshly broken hymen is not an essential element of rape and healed lacerations do not negate rape.[32]
2006-09-27
AUSTRIA-MARTINEZ, J.
Neither does the testimony of Dr. Manuel Aves that ligature wounds usually heal approximately within seven to ten days[34] pose any material threat to the integrity of AAA's testimony. At best, what the ligature marks reveal is that AAA was tied at some point in time before she was examined by Dr. Alves. Even Dr. Alves stated that he was not sure when the marks on AAA were inflicted.[35] It has been consistently held that the absence of physical injuries on the victim's body does not negate rape.[36] It is with more reason that the Court finds that the presence or absence of ligature marks on AAA's wrist is immaterial.
2006-02-28
CHICO-NAZARIO, J.
Alibi, the plea of having been elsewhere than at the scene of the crime at the time of the commission of the felony, is a plausible excuse for the accused. Let there be no mistake about it. Contrary to the common notion, alibi is in fact a good defense. But to be valid for purposes of exoneration from a criminal charge, the defense of alibi must be such that it would have been physically impossible for the person charged with the crime to be at the locus criminis at the time of its commission, the reason being that no person can be in two places at the same time. The excuse must be so airtight that it would admit of no exception. Where there is the least possibility of accused's presence at the crime scene, the alibi will not hold water.[33]