Marilyn M. Atienza v. Aguilar


Marilyn M. Atienza v. Aguilar

A.M. No. P-19-3988

August 14, 2019


                Complainant is one of the private complainants in a criminal case against accused Eleazar J. Candido for reckless imprudence resulting in serious physical injuries and damage to property under Article 365 of the Revised Penal Code. On April 29, 2015, Hon. Cornelio A. Sy, Presiding Judge of the Municipal Trial Court (MTC), San Jose, Occidental Mindoro, rendered judgment convicting the accused and awarded damages to the private complainants.


                Whether or not Aguilar is guilty if simple neglect of duty


                Yes. Sheriffs, being agents of the court, play an important role, particularly in the matter of implementing the writ of execution. Indeed, sheriffs "are tasked to execute final judgments of courts. If not enforced, such decisions are empty victories of the prevailing parties. They must, therefore, comply with their mandated ministerial duty to implement writs promptly and expeditiously. As agents of the law, sheriffs are called upon to discharge their duties with due care and utmost diligence because in serving the court's writs and processes and implementing its order, they cannot afford to err without affecting the integrity of their office and the efficient administration of justice."For Aguilar's lapses in the procedures in the implementation of the writ of execution, as well as his delay in complying with the directives of the OCA to submit his comment, we find him guilty of simple neglect of duty. Simple neglect of duty is defined as the failure of an employee to give attention to a task expected of him and signifies a disregard of a duty resulting from carelessness or indifference. It is a less grave offense punishable by suspension from office for one (1) month and one (1) day to six (6) months for the first offense, and dismissal for the second offense under Section 46(D) of the Revised Rules on Administrative Cases in the Civil Service. However, the Court, in several cases, imposed the penalty of fine in lieu of suspension as an alternative penalty in order to prevent any undue adverse effect on public service which would ensue if work were otherwise left unattended by reason of respondent's suspension. Therefore, the Court imposes on Aguilar the penalty of fine in the amount equivalent to his salary for one ( 1) month, with a stem warning that a repetition of the same or any similar act shall be dealt with more severely.


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