People v. Palada


People v. Palada

G.R. No. 225640

July 30, 2019


                The RTC and CA convicted the appellant for the crime of murder. On February 1, 2009, Marly and her husband Franco Anacio (Franco), and their baby, were sleeping inside their house in Brgy. 04, Can-avid, Eastern Samar, when they were suddenly awakened by the barking of their dogs. Alarmed, Franco asked her to switch on the light at the front and back of their house. Franco peeped through a hole in the wall, saw four (4) persons outside their fence, and told his wife about it. Curious, she also peeked and saw these persons. Thereafter, they decided to go back to sleep. A few minutes later, she heard a gunshot and immediately opened one of the windows of their house. She saw accused-appellant, Palada, and Logrosa who was then carrying a long firearm, and an unidentified person, walking out of their fence and heading towards the street illuminated by sodium light. She went outside their house where she saw her mother-in-law Eva already thereat. Both Marly and Eva followed the four men. According to Marly, accused-appellant proceeded to his parents' house while his companions went inside the house of a certain Pacita Trasga. Marly and Eva then went back to Franco's house where Marly saw her husband lying down with blood oozing from the side of his body. Upon seeing this, she shouted for help from her neighbors Franco succumbed to death, Dr. Felix G. Nicart conducted the postmortem examination on Franco's body and concluded that the cause of his death was the multiple gunshot wounds he sustained.


                Whether or not the CA erred in finding conspiracy among the accused.


                Yes. Conspiracy exists when two or more persons come to an agreement concerning the commission of a felony and decide to commit it. Where all the accused acted in concert at the time of the commission of the offense, and it is shown by such acts that they had the same purpose or common design and were united in its execution, conspiracy is sufficiently established. It must be shown that all participants performed specific acts with such closeness and coordination as to indicate a common purpose or design to commit a felony. Conspiracy transcends mere companionship. Mere presence at the scene of the crime does not in itself amount to conspiracy. Even knowledge or acquiescence in or agreement to cooperate is not enough to constitute one a party to a conspiracy, absent any showing of his active participation in the commission of the crime with a view to the furtherance of the common design and purpose. In this regard, we stress that conspiracy must be established, not by conjecture, but by positive and conclusive evidence.

The mere presence of the accused-appellant at the scene of the crime could not justly incriminate him considering that the identity of the shooter himself remained not reliably established. In fact, Eva Anacio precisely recalled that it was Logrosa whom she had seen carrying the long firearm right after the shooting. Despite that testimony, however, the trial court acquitted Logrosa on the ground that the Prosecution did not establish his guilt beyond reasonable doubt. This should reveal that the combination of all the circumstances did not result in a moral certainty that the accused appellant, to the exclusion of all others, had committed the crime.

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