Patulot v. People


Patulot v. People

G.R. No. 235071

January 7, 2019


                The petitioner was charged with child abuse (RA 7610) “Special Protection of Children Against Abuse, Exploitation and Discrimination Act.” Patulot(petitioner) poured boiling oil towards CCC which the latter attempted to avoid but to no avail, she was still poured upon. The oil upon splashing on CCC slightly hit AAA(3 years old) and BBB(2 months). CCC took AAA and BBB to her two neighbors and the two children were put to treatment as well as CCC. On the other hand, according to petitioner’s defense, while she was carrying her merchandise CCC bumped her making the merchandise fall to the ground and CCC added invectives and cursed the petitioner. In another time, Patulot while repacking pepper, CCC commented that she should have joined her husband so that the two of them will be in a wake. Patulot thereafter reported CCC but was ignored. RTC and CA convicted her.


                Whether or not the CA gravely erred in affirming RTC and failing to apply Art. 49 of the RPC with regard to the imposition of the penalty.


                No. Under Section 3(b) RA 7610 “child abuse” refers to the maltreatment, whether habitual or not, of the child which includes any of the following: 1.) psychological and physical abuse, neglect, cruelty, sexual abuse and emotional maltreatment; 2.) any act by deeds or words which debases, degrades demeans the intrinsic worth and dignity of a child as a human being; 3.) unreasonable deprivation of his basic needs for survival such as food and shelter or 4.) failure to immediately give medical treatment to an injured child resulting in serious impairment of his growth and development or in his permanent incapacity or death. Art. 59 of P.D. 603 as amended, also punishes four distinct acts 1.) child abuse 2.) child cruelty 3.) child exploitation 4.) being responsible for conditions prejudicial to the child’s development.  Contrary to petitioner's assertion, an accused can be prosecuted and be convicted under Section 10(a), Article VI of Republic Act No. 7610 if he commits any of the four acts therein. The prosecution need not prove that the acts of child abuse, child cruelty and child exploitation have resulted in the prejudice of the child because an act prejudicial to the development of the child is different from the former acts. It is, therefore, clear from the foregoing that when a child is subjected to physical abuse or injury, the person responsible therefor can be held liable under R.A. No. 7610 by establishing the essential facts above. A person incurs criminal liability although the wrongful act done be different from that which he intended. Article XV, Section 3, paragraph 2, that "[t]he State shall defend the right of the children to assistance, including proper care and nutrition, and special protection from all forms of neglect, abuse, cruelty, exploitation, and other conditions prejudicial to their development." – RA 7610

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