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G.R. No.

147932 January 25, 2006

LAILA G. DE OCAMPO, Petitioner,
vs.
THE HONORABLE SECRETARY OF JUSTICE, MAGDALENA B. DACARRA, and
ERLINDA P. ORAYAN, Respondents. CARPIO, J.:

Facts
Magdalena Dacarra executed a sworn statement at the QC Women’s Desk because
her son, Ronald, was complaining of dizziness. Ronald told his mother that his
teacher, Laila Deocampo, banged his head against Lorendo’s head. Ronald was
brought to the quack doctor then to East Avenue Medical for x-ray. It was found out
that Ronald’s head was fractured. Ronald eventually died.
Inquest Proceedings
During the Inquest Proceedings, it was ruled that there was insufficient evidence to
support the charge of homicide against Deocampo.
Preliminary Investigation
Lorendo’s mother attended hearing and alleged that Deocampo offered her P100,
000 for non-appearance at the Preliminary Investigation. Two other persons, one
claiming to have witnessed the head-banging incident and the other, a victim of
Deocampo came forward.
Deocampo also submitted her counter-affidavit, stating that 1) Ronald’s head
condition was due to a previous vehicular accident; and 2) the immediate cause of
Ronald’s death was “cardio pulmonary arrest” based on the autopsy report.
The investigating prosecutor issued a resolution finding probable cause against
Deocampo. Deocampo subsequently filed a petition for review with the DOJ.
DOJ Resolution
The DOJ denied the petition for review. It also upheld the prosecutor’s findings and
pointed out that Deocampo never denied the act. Deocampo then filed a motion for
reconsideration which was also denied.
Issues
a. Procedural issue
The OSG contends that the petition should be dismissed outright for being
filed with the wrong court, the petition should have been filed with the CA.
however, it was decided that the court will relax the rules due to the gravity
of the offense charged.

b. W/N there is denial of due process during the preliminary investigation
1. Absence of clarificatory hearing

such as the vehicular accident. The Petition was denied and the Resolution of the Secretary of Justice was affirmed. The court held that the Petitioner never denied the occurrence of the head-banging incident. The court emphasized that the requirement for Preliminary Investigation is probable cause and not proof beyond reasonable doubt. W/N probable cause exists Petitioner argues that the head-banging is not the proximate cause of Ronald’s death. . which are alleged to have been the cause of Ronald’s death are evidentiary and should be threshed out during trial. Section 3(e) of Rule 112 uses the term “may”: (e) If the investigating officer believes that there are matters to be clarified. 2. he may set a hearing to propound clarificatory questions to the parties or their witnesses. The Petitioner argues that she was denied of due process because a clarificatory hearing was not performed. Further. It was held that clarificatory hearings are not indispensable. Xxx Preliminary investigations are also inquisitorial and not based on merits. other reasons. c. Obtaining the autopsy report The prosecutor is not prohibited to obtain a copy of the autopsy report. during which the parties shall be afforded an opportunity to be present but without the right to examine or cross- examine.