[ G.R. No. 22688, January 26, 1925 ]
THE PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINE ISLANDS, PLAINTIFF AND APPELLEE, VS. RAMON VAGALLON, DEFENDANT AND APPELLANT.
D E C I S I O N
The cause of the fight may reasonably be attributed to the fact that the day previous to that of the event, Roque Salomon, who, as suitor of the sister of Ramon Vagallon had been living in the latter's house, was ejected therefrom because the accused's sister having given birth to a child, Roque Salomon was not in position to marry her. So that when the accused and the offended party met on that evening with the resentment originated by the preceding event, there was sufficient motive on the part of either party for taking revenge. At any rate, the fight did occur, and according to the theory of the prosecution, the accused, after receiving six wounds and with his body stained with blood, went to his house, which was not very far from the place of the event, and upon relating to his mother what had happened, the latter gave him a lance and with it he returned to the scene of the fight, and having met on the way the girl Natividad Salomon, he threw the lance against her, inflicting wounds upon her body, which caused her death on the following day.
On the other hand, the accused admits having inflicted the wounds that caused the death of Natividad Salomon, but that they were inflicted accidentally during the fight, that is, that having thrown the lance against Roque Salomon, with whom he was fighting, the latter avoided the blow, and the lance struck the girl Natividad Salomon on one of her sides, as she was then behind the combatants.
There is, therefore, no doubt that the accused caused the death of the girl Natividad Salomon. While the accused had no intention to kill her, yet he is responsible for the consequences of his acts.
The trial court found the accused guilty of the crime of homicide, and considering the commission of the crime to have been attended by the aggravating circumstance of abuse of superior strength, not offset by any mitigating one, sentenced him to seventeen years, four months and one day of reclusion temporal, with the accessories provided by law, to indemnify the family of Natividad Salomon in the sum of P500 and to pay the costs of the action, crediting the accused with one-half of the period of imprisonment suffered by him as detention prisoner.
Accepting, as we do, the version given by the accused, as being more reasonable, of the manner in which Natividad Salomon was wounded, we do not think it right to take into consideration, as was done by the trial court, the aggravating circumstance of abuse of superior strength. So that eliminating said aggravating circumstance, the penalty provided in article 404 of the Penal Code must be imposed upon the accused in the medium degree, that is, fourteen years, eight months and one day of reclusion temporal, and as thus modified, the judgment appealed from is affirmed in all other respects, with costs against the appellant. So ordered.
Johnson, Street, Malcolm, Ostrand, Johns, and Romualdez, JJ., concur.