People v. XXX


People v. XXX

G.R. No. 235662

July 24, 2019


                The CA convicted XXX for the crime of 2 counts of Qualified Rape and 1 count of Lascivious Conduct. omplainants AAA and BBB are appellant's daughters with MMM. AAA was born on August 12, 1993, and BBB, on February 7, 1996. Appellant was a tricycle driver while their mother, MMM, was an Overseas Filipino Worker. AAA testified that on March 14, 2009, she was alone with appellant in their home. He brought her to a room, laid her down on the bed, and undressed her. Appellant took off his shorts and inserted his penis into her vagina. She felt pain and blood came out of her vagina and she could not do anything. After sexually ravishing her, appellant told her to put on her dress while he also put on his shorts. Appellant also promised to give her money. AAA further recounted that appellant sexually abused her many times more but she could not remember the dates. In some instances, her younger sister BBB was even in the room. She kept her silence for three (3) years because her mother MMM did not believe her. Eventually, she left their house and told her aunt what appellant had done to her. Her aunt rescued her. While intensely crying, BBB testified that sometime in 2009, she and appellant were left alone in their house. Appellant asked her if she wanted money then suddenly pulled down her shorts and panty and raised her t-shirt, exposing her breasts. She resisted but appellant did not stop touching and kissing her private parts. He then took off his t-shirt, shorts, and brief. As he was about to insert his penis into her vagina, CCC, her younger brother arrived. Appellant hurriedly dressed and told her to do the same. BBB added that appellant would usually move from his room into theirs while they were asleep. Appellant would usually lie beside them and touch her and AAA's private parts. Eventually, he would have carnal knowledge of her even though AAA and CCC were in the same room. She knew that appellant also raped AAA. Appellant would wake her up by holding her hands while raping AAA. They could not do anything because they were so scared of appellant. The prosecution and the defense stipulated that AAA and BBB are appellant's legitimate children.


                Whether or not the CA erred in affirming the RTC


                No. First. The fact that AAA and BBB still went on with their respective daily routines should not dent their credibility. People v. Prodenciado is apropos: This hardly convinces. It has been held that "different people react differently to different situations and there is no standard form of human behavioral response when one is confronted with a strange, startling or frightful experience," such as rape. Verily, some victims choose to suffer in silence; while others may be moved to action out of a need to seek justice for what was done to them. Then there are those who opt not to dwell on their experience and try to live as though it never happened. To the Court's mind, this is how "AAA" tried to cope with the harrowing experience that befell her. Moreover, since she was just a young girl when all these rapes were committed against her, "AAA" simply knew no other way of life than what she was accustomed to. Second. Rape victims react differently. Some may offer strong resistance while others may be too intimidated to offer any resistance at all. There is no standard form of reaction for a woman when facing a shocking and horrifying experience such as a sexual assault. The workings of the human mind placed under emotional stress are unpredictable. People react differently - some may shout, some may faint, and some may be shocked into insensibility, while others may openly welcome the intrusion. But any of these reactions does not impair the credibility of a rape victim. Additionally, failure to physically resist the attack does not detract from the established fact that a reprehensible act was done to a child-woman by her own biological father. Lastly, failure to shout or offer tenuous resistance does not make voluntary the victim's submission to the criminal acts of the accused.


Indeed, just because AAA or BBB did not offer tenacious resistance nor even shout whenever their father sexually ravished them did not make them less credible as witnesses. Third. It is not true that AAA and BBB took three (3) years before they reported the sex crimes appellant perpetrated on them. As aptly observed by the trial court, AAA confided in their mother their sexual ravishment in appellant's hands but their mother did not believe her. They were young and helpless victims of their own father's bestiality. He treated them like sex slaves in never ending horrendous ways. The person they thought would protect them did not even care to believe them. Where else would they go? Who else could help them? They were obviously driven into helplessness and cowed silence.




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