390 Phil. 150
Criminal Case No. 94-11359:The prosecution presented evidence showing the following:
That on or about the 7th day of February 1994, in the Municipality of Taytay, Province of Rizal, Philippine and within the jurisdiction of this Honorable Court, the above-named accused, by means of force, violence, and intimidation, did then and there willfully, unlawfully, and feloniously commence the commission of the crime of rape upon the person of one Mary Ann Santos Y Tabucao directly by overt acts, to wit: While the complainant was asleep, the accused touched her private parts and undressed her and tried to rape her, but was not able to perform all the acts that would have constituted the crime of rape by reason of the refusal and vigorous fight made by the complainant in defense of her honor and the timely arrival of complainant's aunt which caused the accused to desist from his intention.
CONTRARY TO LAW
Criminal Case No. 94-11360:
That on or about and sometime in the year 1988, in the Municipality of Taytay, Province of Rizal, Philippines and within the jurisdiction of this Honorable Court, the above-named accused, by means of force and intimidation, did then and there wilfully, unlawfully, and feloniously have carnal knowledge with one Mary Ann Santos Y Tabucao, a minor nine (9) years of age, against her will and consent.
CONTRARY TO LAW.
Criminal Case No. 94-11361:
That on or about and sometime in the year 1989 in the Municipality of Taytay, Province of Rizal, Philippines and within the jurisdiction of this Honorable Court, the above-named accused, by means of force and intimidation, did then and there wilfully, unlawfully and feloniously have carnal knowledge with one Mary Ann Santos Y Tabucao, a minor ten (10) years of age, against her will and consent.
CONTRARY TO LAW.
Accused-appellant pleaded "not guilty" in all three cases, whereupon trial was held. The cases were consolidated and jointly tried.
FINDINGS:Dr. Cosidon testified that the healed lacerations were at least a week old and shallow because they only "reached about one-half of the width of the hymen." She opined that the lacerations could not be deeper because Mary Ann's hymen was thick.
Fairly nourished, fairly developed and coherent female subject. Breasts are hemispherical with pale brown areola and nipples from which no secretions could be pressed out. Abdomen is flat and soft.
There is moderate growth of pubic hair. Labia majora are full, convex, and coaptated with the pale brown labia minora presenting in between. On separating, the same is disclosed [as] an elastic, fleshy-type hymen with shallow healed lacerations at 1, 9, and 11 o'clock positions. External vaginal orifice offers moderate resistance to the introduction of the examining index finger and the virgin sized vaginal speculum. Vaginal canal is narrow with prominent rugosities. Cervix is normal in size, color, and consistency.
Subject is in non-virgin state physically.
There are no external signs of recent application of any form of violence.
Vaginal and peri-urethral smears are negative for gram-negative diplococci and for spermatozoa.
WHEREFORE, the Court finds accused ERNESTO SANTOS guilty beyond reasonable doubt of two (2) counts of Statutory Rape and he is hereby sentenced to suffer the penalty of Reclusion Perpetua for each count and to pay the amount of P50,000.00 for each count as provided for by law.Hence this appeal.
However, the Court finds said accused NOT GUILTY of the offense of Attempted Rape and he is thus ACQUITTED of the said charge.
Although the prosecution failed to prove any damages, moral and exemplary, the Court motu proprio awarded the amount of P500,000.00 as damages in both cases to the private complainant.
The trial court held:
Analyzing carefully the testimony of the accused and his witnesses, nothing has been said about the statutory rape[s], hence, the castle built by the prosecution stands on the basis of the testimony of Mary Ann. The Court firmly believes that it can stand the meticulous scrutiny of any legal mind, hence, the prosecution was able to prove the guilt of the accused Ernesto Santos beyond reasonable doubt. For the Court believes that Mary Ann, daughter of the accused, could not allow herself to be exposed to public ridicule and scandal leading to the destruction of her future and that of her family if such were not a fact in her complaint and if only to seek justice and redress for a despicable and bestial wrong inflicted upon her by the accused.
Moreover, the Court gives great weight and credence over private complainant's testimony considering the tender age of the complainant and the moral ascendancy exercised over her by the accused. Furthermore, the Court believes that accused could easily perpetrate his lustful desires on her daughter with a modicum of effort as when accused merely laid beside her and had carnal knowledge with her daughter with least resistance.
Further, the reason advanced by accused is patently shallow and unworthy of belief. The fact remains that Mary Ann considered the accused as her father and regarded him with respect and love that a daughter has for her father when she murmured the words "Why is it that you are always doing those things to me as if I am not your daughter?" The Court finds that such gesture inculcated upon the person of the private complainant could not possibly make her concoct and fabricate such charges against the accused if the same were not true.
Lastly, it should be worthy of note that no less than the Supreme Court, on more than one occasion has declared that rape committed by a father upon his daughter is "so monstrous that no punishment which is in the power of this, or any other human tribunal to decree, could possibly be sufficient expiation of the defense."
. . . To allege in an information that the accused committed rape on a certain girl between October, 1910, and August, 1912, is too indefinite to give the accused an opportunity to prepare his defense, and that indefiniteness is not cured by setting out the date when a child was born as a result of such crime. Section 7 of the Code of Criminal Procedure does not warrant such pleading. Its purpose is to permit the allegation of a date of the commission of the crime as near to the actual date as the information of the prosecuting officer will permit, and when that has been done any date may be proved which does not surprise and substantially prejudice the defense. It does not authorize the total omission of a date or such an indefinite allegation with reference thereto as amounts to the same thing.Accused-appellant's argument is without merit. Accused-appellant never asked for a bill of particulars nor moved to quash the informations before he was arraigned. This circumstance alone distinguishes this case from Dichao because in the latter case, the accused moved to quash the information on the ground that it did not allege the date of commission of the crime with some specificity. It is thus too late in the day for accused-appellant to question the form or substance of the informations in these cases.
The phrase "on or about the year 1992" encompasses not only the twelve (12) months of 1992 but includes the years prior and subsequent to 1992, e.g., 1991 and 1993, for which accused-appellant has to virtually account for his whereabouts. Hence, the failure of the prosecution to allege with particularity the date of the commission of the offense and, worse, its failure to prove during the trial the date of the commission of the offense as alleged in the Information, deprived accused-appellant of his right to intelligently prepare for his defense and convincingly refute the charges against him.In contrast, in these cases, the informations alleged that the rapes were committed in a definite year, i.e., 1988 in Criminal Case No. 94-11360 and 1989 in Criminal Case No. 94-11361.
A rape victim's actions are oftentimes overwhelmed by fear rather than by reason. It is this fear, springing from the initial rape, that the perpetrator hopes to build a climate of extreme psychological terror, which would, he hopes, numb his victim into silence and submissiveness. Incestuous rape magnifies this terror, because the perpetrator is a person normally expected to give solace and protection to the victim. Furthermore, in incest, access to the victim is guaranteed by the blood relationship, proximity magnifying the sense of helplessness and the degree of fear.Indeed, the following testimony of Mary Ann during direct examination clearly establishes accused-appellant's guilt:
. . . The rapist perverts whatever moral ascendancy and influence he has over his victim in order to intimidate and force the latter to submit to repeated acts of rape over a period of time. In many instances, he succeeds and the crime is forever kept on a lid. In a few cases, the victim suddenly finds the will to summon unknown sources of courage to cry out for help and bring her depraved malefactor to justice.
Given this pattern, we have repeatedly ruled that the failure of the victim to immediately report the rape is not indicative of fabrication. "Young girls usually conceal for some time the fact of their having been raped." . . .
In all of these and other cases of incestuous rape, the perpetrator takes full advantage of his blood relationship, ascendancy, and influence over his victim, both to commit the sexual assault and to intimidate the victim into silence. Unfortunately for some perpetrators of incestuous rape, their victims manage to break out from the cycle of fear and terror. In People v . Molero [144 SCRA 397 (1986)], we emphasized that "an intimidated person cowed into submitting to a series of repulsive acts may acquire some courage as she grows older and finally state that enough is enough, the depraved malefactor must be punished."
It must not be forgotten that the crimes involved in these cases are rapes in which the victim is below 12 years of age so that the lack of consent of the victim to have sexual intercourse with accused-appellant is irrelevant.
PROSECUTOR: Now, in these 2 complaints which are the subject of the 3 information[s] against the accused, I am calling your attention particularly to Exhibit "D," a complaint for rape. You mentioned here the year 1988, could you recall the month when the incident happened? A No, sir. Q You could not also remember the exact day when the incident happened? A I cannot. Q Do you remember the place of the incident occurred? A Yes, sir. Q Where? A In our house. Q You could also recall the time when the incident happened? A One o'clock in the morning. Q Can you explain to us how that incident happened in your house at around 1:00 o'clock in the morning in the year 1988 of a date which you can no longer recall? A On that date I slept together with my father [on] one bed while my mother slept together with my youngest brother when all of a sudden, I felt that my father was touching my body. Q Please proceed. A When I opened my eyes, I saw it was my father Ernesto Santos. I resisted and he threatened me by uttering the words "Papatayin ko kayong Mag-iina." Q What happened next? A He took off all my clothes. Q After he took off all your clothes, what happened next? A While my father was removing my clothes I saw that he was also removing his short pants and his brief and once again, I resisted and he said that he will break . . . the bottle in my face if I will not heed . . . his desire. Q What else happened? A Because of his threat I was not able to talk and after that he went on top of me and tried to insert his penis [into] my vagina [in] which I felt extreme pain. Q You said extreme pain, what part of your body felt extreme pain? A My vagina. Q What happened next? A I moaned because of the pain that I felt and I told him that is enough father because its painful but my father told me that it will only take . . . a few minutes only and on that situation my mother woke up and saw that my father and I were both naked. Q Then what happened? A That was the cause of their quarrel and separation. Q Now, at that point when your mother saw you and your father both naked did she utter anything? A Yes, sir. She cursed invective words against my father. Q Was your father able to penetrate your vagina at that time of the sexual attempt? A Yes, sir. Q Did you see anything in your vagina? A Yes, sir. White hot fluid. Q Do you know from whose person that white hot fluid came from? A Yes, sir from my father's penis. Q So after that incident your father and mother have a quarrel which was the result of their separation, for how long did they separate? A Only for a few months. Q After a few months did you return to your house? A Yes, sir because my grandmother talked to my parents and after that they live together again. Q Now, in your statement, which you mentioned particularly in paragraph 6 you mentioned the year 1989 "ay muling naulit po sa akin ang panghahalay niya sa taong 1989" can you explain or describe to us how that incident happened again? A The same thing he did to me the first time by threatening me.
As held in People v. Palicte, the fact that there was no deep penetration of the victim's vagina and that her hymen was still intact does not negate the commission of rape. If the victim is a child, rape can be done without penetration.
PROSECUTOR GONZALES: Q Now, could that shallow healed lacerations on the organ of the victim be caused by [a] male organ? A Possible, sir. Q And you said it was shallow healed lacerations, how shallow is it? A Those lacerations have reached about one-half of the width of the hymen, sir. Q What is . . . the difference between deep laceration and shallow laceration? A When you say deep, the laceration have reached more than one-half of the width of the hymen and when we say shallow the laceration have reached about one-half of the width of the hymen, sir. Q You mean the penis was not able to penetrate fully . . . the vaginal canal? A When we say shallow it does not mean it has penetrated the vaginal canal, sir. Q Was the hymen thick or thin? A Thick, sir. Q So the laceration could not be [deep] because of the thickness of the hymen? A Possible, sir. Q So that doctor, it could have been possible that the sexual intercourse could have . . . happened way back 1985? A Possible, sir. Q Is it possible because of the thickness of the hymen? A Yes, sir.
Art. 63. Rules for the application of indivisible penalties. - In all cases in which the law prescribes a single indivisible penalty, it shall be applied by the courts regardless of any mitigating or aggravating circumstances that may have attended the commission of the deed.The trial court's awards of civil liability should be modified. While the trial court correctly awarded P50,000.00 civil indemnity for each count of rape, its award of P500,000.00 moral and exemplary damages is excessive and should be reduced as follows: P50,000.00 for moral damages for each count of rape, or a total of P100,000.00 moral damages and P25,000.00 for exemplary damages for each count of rape, or a total of P50,000.00 exemplary damages.