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People v.

GR No L-35574, Sep 28, 1994, Cuevas, J.

Dean Lozarie Law 109 – Crim 1 Group B5


 Prosecution’s version
o 1965 Mar 6: At about 11pm, Valentina Manananquil went to the NAWASA
Building at Pasay City, where her husband was working as a security guard
o She had just purchased 10 centavos worth of gasoline from the Esso Gasoline
Station at Taft Avenue. She placed the gasoline in a coffee bottle
o She was angry at her husband, Elias Day, because the latter had burned her
clothing, was maintaining a mistress, and had been taking all the food from their
o Upon reaching the NAWASA Building, she knocked at the door
o Immediately after the door was opened, Elias Day shouted at his wife and
castigated her, saying “PUTA BUGUIAN LAKAW GALIGAON”
o The appellant, tired of hearing the victim, then got the bottle of gasoline and
poured the contents thereof on the face of the victim
o Then, she got a matchbox and set the polo shirt of the victim aflame
 Defense’s version
o Taking with her an empty bottle of Hemo, she left for a nearby gasoline station
and bought ten centavos’ worth of gasoline, intending to use the same to clean her
shoes, which she needed for church the next day
o Then she remembered that her husband needed gasoline for his lighter so she
dropped by his place of work
o She saw her husband inside a building of the NAWASA standing by the window
o She entered and knocked at the wooden door. Elias opened the door, but when he
saw his wife he shouted at her.
o She told him that she had brought him fluid for his lighter, but Elias, who was
drunk, cursed her “PUTA BUGUIAN LAKAW GALIGAON.” This shouting
continued despite her telling him that she had come just to bring the gasoline that
he wanted
o She trembled and became dizzy. She was beside herself and did not know that she
was sprinkling the gasoline on her husband’s face.
o She was tired and dizzy and had to sit down for a while. Then she remembered
her grandson who was alone in the house so she went home, leaving her husband
who was walking to and fro and not paying attention to her
o She went to bed but could not sleep. She returned to NAWASA to apologize to
her husband, but, upon arriving, saw that police officers were present
o An officer pulled her aside, asked her if she was Elias’s wife
o When she said yes, officer accused her of setting her husband on fire—an
accusation she denied

Evangelists for plaintiff-appellee. Pastrana and Adolfo M. L-31335 February 29.” “no error in the trial court’s pronouncement that the appellant’s sworn statement was voluntarily given by her”  Contrary to her claim. the court held on to state that this could not have resulted had not the victim suffered from second-degree burns G. from which he died. Iligan for defendant-appellant. plaintiff-appellee. C. prepared a written statement which she was made to sign upon a promise that she would be released if she signed it ISSUES/HELD WON appellant’s extrajudicial confession was voluntarily given – YES WON burns sustained by victim contributed to cause pneumonia which was the cause of the victim’s death – YES RATIONALE  Court found “appellant’s aforesaid assertions a mere pretense to flimsy to be accepted as true.J. Quiroz and Solicitor Vicente P. Office of the Solicitor General Felix Q. she knew and understood Tagalog even though she was not a “Tagala” as she had stayed in Manila continuously for 14 years  her total indifference and seemingly unperturbed concern over the fate that had befallen the victim supports the theory that she “has murder in her heart and meant to do harm” to her husband  Mananquil claimed that victim’s pneumonia. No. with the corresponding accessory . vs. Acting Assistant Solicitor General Dominador L. was caused by the alcohol which he was drunk on that night. taking alcohol cannot cause pneumonia  Pneumonia was complication of the burns sustained  While accepting pneumonia as the immediate cause of death. 1972 THE PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES. Antonio. CONCEPCION. PABLO RELOJ alias AMBOY. Juan L. o The police took her to the headquarters. defendant-appellant.:p Appeal by Pablo Reloj from a decision of the Court of First Instance of Aklan convicting him of the crime of murder and sentencing him to life imprisonment. But as testified by a doctor.R.

) saying. and that.. tried to attack Justiniano Jr. Cordova and Dr. Barrio of Estancia.) from behind and placing his (defendant's) right hand on the left shoulder of Justiniano Sr. but came back. and h) in sentencing him to life imprisonment. and that. sometimes. with the ice pick still in his (appellant's) hand.. watching Hermie Zante as he was tying a gaff on a fighting cock. that. the aforementioned judgment of conviction. Justiniano Sr. Exhibit E. appellant rushed at him (Justiniano Jr." . and then picked up the ice pick thrown away by appellant. Municipality of Kalibo. c) in holding him responsible for the death of Justiniano Sr. ran away. outside the cockpit in Libtong. he developed. he (Zante) heard Justiniano Sr. where a policeman later arrested him.. on the left side of the abdomen. with an ice pick wrapped in a piece of paper. that. defendant approached him (Justiniano Sr. appellant chased Justiniano Jr. where Patrolman Nacion arrested him. was watching it about 1-1/2 brazas (fathoms) away. g) in not considering in his favor the mitigating circumstance of voluntary surrender to the authorities. at about 4:00 p. with which appellant.. the Court of First Instance of Aklan rendered. five (5) days later. throwing away the ice pick.. Hence. and "without costs. "And you also". where a surgical operation was performed upon him. in the sum of P12. b) in not finding that he had no intent to kill. stabbed him. that the latter soon gave up the chase.. d) in holding that the crime committed by him is murder qualified by treachery. taken by Police Sergeant Angelo Villanueva in the Aklan Provincial Hospital.. in the presence of Police Sergeant N. who maintains that the lower court has erred: a) in giving full credence to the testimony of the main witnesses for the prosecution. on the way thereto. as he (Zante) looked at him (Justiniano. stated in Exhibit E that appellant had stabbed him suddenly in the abdomen. who had. a paralytic ileum — which takes place.000.penalties. Province of Aklan. had been brought to said institution on July 7. Justiniano Isagan Sr. this appeal by the defendant. and.m. as Justiniano Jr. after appropriate proceedings. with the left hand. under a mango tree. that. 1963. soon later. went to a store nearby. e) in not considering in his favor the special mitigating circumstance of incomplete self-defense. accordingly. "And you also". Exhibit E.) ran away pursued by appellant. Jr. at about 3: 00 p. Apart from the foregoing. meanwhile. in turn.. while his father was standing. while he was arming the aforementioned fighting cock. he (Zante) noticed the latter holding appellant's left hand. groan that. f) in not considering in his favor the mitigating circumstance of lack of intent to commit so grave a wrong as that committed. was stabbed by appellant Pablo Reloj. Sr. which. outside the cockpit. . saying. Ciriaco Icamina.m. the prosecution introduced the ante-mortem declaration. to indemnify the heirs of Justiniano Isagan Sr. The corresponding information for murder having been filed. likewise. was brought to the Aklan Provincial Hospital. that. and Justiniano Sr. he picked up appellant's ice pick. then went back to where his father was wounded. for he wanted to bet on said cock. with an ice pick wrapped in a piece of paper. This testimony was corroborated by Hermie Zante who stated that. with a weapon covered by a paper. — who was several steps away from his father — tried to approach him. testified that his father and he went to the cockpit in Libtong on July 7. Justiniano Jr.). seemed to be in the process of recovery. without subsidiary imprisonment in case of insolvency. of the deceased. in consequence of the exposure of the internal organs during the operation — and then died. wresting himself from the latter's hold. soon after Justiniano Sr. held an ice pick pointed at the belly of Justiniano Sr. soon thereafter. It is not disputed that. gone to the aforesaid store nearby. on July 7.m.. that. The main evidence for the prosecution consisted of the testimony of Justiniano Isagan Jr. 1963. Justiniano Sr. he (Justiniano. that Justiniano Jr.. which turned out to be an ice pick. 1963. and that Justiniano Jr. and Hermie Zante and the ante-mortem declaration. at about 3:00 p. although the operation was successful and Justiniano Sr.

although the criminal case was dismissed before July 7. Madalag. he drew out the ice pick in his pocket and stabbed Justiniano Sr. thus belying appellant's story. and Hermie Zante. the latter got mad and gave him several fist blows. that appellant replied: "Ah. in the store of one Ricamonte in Daguitan. Upon the other hand. certainly. that. the fact that appellant brought . Justiniano Jr. and that. that he left the same and headed for the cockpit. 1963. that. and then go to prison. and that. and that he forthwith stabbed Justiniano Sr. he was in his store. whereupon he collected what was due from his opponents.that his demand for payment of the bet he had won from Justiniano Sr. to 1:00 p. on July 7. 1963.m. at noontime. linti. this Isagan.The prosecution. and he bet against each other the sum of P10.m. had it really taken place. as well as underscoring his lack of veracity. but he (De la Cruz) was informed that he (Justiniano Sr. on July 7. that.. What is more. and that two (2) hours later.. and stated that. whose names he did not remember. when he (De la Cruz) went to the cockpit. who were a few paces away from Justiniano Sr.. when he was almost groggy. had seen it. in the market of Kalibo. had bets against three other persons. considering that appellant had apparently been drinking in said store. contradicted by no less than Dr. to warn him. five (5) hours before the occurrence. also. The first assignment of error is untenable.. would have noticed the attack allegedly made by the latter upon appellant. Aklan. whereas De la Cruz proceeded to the house of Justiniano Sr. was not around. he was in the store of one Ricamonte. Aklan. as he (appellant) appeared thereat so suddenly that Zante did not notice his arrival. around 1:00 p. in the belly. or prior to July 7. We do not regard these statements as improbable. in a truck headed for the cockpit at Libtong. may not be a disinterested witness. again. he boarded a truck headed for the cockpit at Libtong. appellant had told his two (2) companions. Then. it appears that the latter was one of the witnesses against appellant in a criminal action and a civil case filed by Crisanta Ureta and Edecio Venturanza. Besides.. sufficed to so enrage the latter that he boxed appellant to the extent of causing two (2) contusions and two (2) abrasions in his face and one (1) contusion in the small finger of his right hand is inherently incredible. appellant contradicted the testimony of Ibardolaza. that he heard appellant tell his companion that he (appellant) was going to kill Justiniano Sr. Besides. too.) was already in the cockpit.. Luvisminda Kapunan. he threw the ice pick away and proceeded to a nearby store where he waited for a policeman and voluntarily surrendered to him. 1963. Justiniano Jr. It is. that he (appellant) would kill Justiniano Sr. What is more. Zante had no possible reason to falsely incriminate appellant herein. that he won the bets. Although manifestly imprudent. but. Being a son of the deceased. appellant's version .m. De la Cruz and Justiniano Jr. that appellant alighted in front of the cockpit. Neither Zante nor Justiniano Jr. from 5:00 a. at about 10:00 a. however. that. Justiniano Sr. The theory of the prosecution was further corroborated by the fact that. that appellant was then in the store drinking beer with two companions. that he would first kill Justiniano Sr. and that Ibardolaza then heard appellant say that he would first kill Justiniano Sr. Aklan. Then.m. he (appellant) looked for him and found him outside the cockpit. both stated that appellant was not there. when he demanded payment of the P10 due from Justiniano Sr. in view of which his aforementioned seatmate advised him to cool-off. on said date. that appellant's companion advised him to "cool off".. Testifying in his own behalf. that appellant was then in the seat in front of him (De la Cruz). who examined him on July 8.. noticing that Justiniano Sr. appellant told his seatmate. likewise. that he. likewise. 1963.m. they interfere with what is not theirs". The former testified that. his testimony was corroborated by that of Justiniano Sr. Justiniano Sr. and the hearing of the civil case did not take place until later and was eventually dismissed.. Angel de la Cruz affirmed that. Madalag. and asserted that said injuries had been caused over 48 hours before. had already been wounded and taken to the Aklan Provincial Hospital. introduced the testimony of Rogelio Ibardolaza and Angel de la Cruz.. and then go to Muntinglupa.. in Daguitan. thereupon. but he did not retaliate. at about 2:30 p. 1963. at about 3:00 p. appellant's testimony to this effect is not only uncorroborated. Indeed.m.

strongly suggests that he took it with him for the purpose of making use of it. The third assignment of error is predicated upon the fact that the immediate cause of the death of Justiniano Sr. the penalty prescribed by law for . that appellant had voluntarily surrendered to the authorities and that his seventh assignment of error is. that the exposure of the internal organs in consequence of a surgical operation in the abdomen sometimes results in a paralysis of the ileum and that said operation had to be performed on account of the abdominal injury inflicted by appellant. suffice to show that there is no merit in the sixth assignment of error. was a paralysis of the ileum that supervened five (5) days after the occurrence. and the statements made by him in the store of Ricamonte — "I will first kill him and then go to Muntinglupa" — and then in the truck on the way to the cockpit — reiterating his intent to kill Justiniano Sr. the manifestly deadly — nature of appellant's ice pick — with a blade almost five (5) inches long — with which he stabbed a vital part of the victim's body (the abdomen). it is clear that the lower court did not err in finding that the offense was qualified by treachery and that the fourth assignment of error is untenable. and death follows as a consequence of this felonious and wicked act. is unworthy of credence and inconsistent with the treachery with which he had attacked Justiniano Sr." 1 Considering that appellant's attack upon Justiniano Sr.. well taken. again.. it would be easy in many cases of homicide to raise a doubt as to the immediate cause of death. under his fifth assignment of error.. which are of themselves consequences of the criminal act. however. If a person inflicts a wound with a deadly weapon in such a manner as to put life in jeopardy. Indeed. for there being no aggravating circumstance to offset the mitigating circumstance of voluntary surrender to the authorities. But. accordingly. Amid the conflicting theories of medical men. which. Then. when he appeared to be on the way to full recovery. It has been established. As regards the second assignment of error. It has been established. which might naturally follow in any case. Equally devoid of merit is the incomplete self-defense invoked by appellant. . the rule surely seems to have its foundation in a wise and practical policy. however. A different doctrine would tend to give immunity to crime and to take away from human life a salutary and essential safeguard.which he could have and would have left in his store in the market. It is well settled that: . every person is to be held to contemplate and to be responsible for the natural consequences of his own acts. must in law be deemed to have been among those which were in contemplation of the guilty party. as above indicated. however.with him the ice pick -. so that the victim had no opportunity to defend himself. this may be. And so is his last assignment of error. whence he allegedly came -. it does not alter its nature or diminish its criminality to prove that other causes cooperated in producing the fatal result. it may be said that neglect of the wound or its unskillful and improper treatment. — as well as the manner in which appellant proceeded in attacking his victim.and that he had it wrapped in a piece of paper. and thereby to open a wide door by which persons guilty of the highest crime might escape conviction and punishment. was made suddenly from behind. evincing appellant's intent to kill Justiniano Sr. and for which he is to be held responsible. and the uncertainties attendant upon the treatment of bodily ailments and injuries. leave no room for doubt about his intent to slay the latter. the circumstances adverted to above. the same being based upon his uncorroborated testimony.

J. and Felipe Erfe brought Javier to his house about 50 meters away from where the incident happened. . 1988 FILOMENO URBANO. HON. INTERMEDIATE APPELLATE COURT AND PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES. apart from the indemnity imposed in the lower court's decision. As suggested by Corporal Torio. including the handle. therefore. Javier was brought to a physician. He found the place where he stored his palay flooded with water coming from the irrigation canal nearby which had overflowed. petitioner. accordingly. with the corresponding accessory penalties. 72964 January 7. Antonio Erfe. Emilio looked for barrio councilman Felipe Solis instead. When Urbano tried to hack and inflict further injury.R. The group went to Dr. Urbano then got angry and demanded that Javier pay for his soaked palay. Urbano unsheathed his bolo (about 2 feet long. Thus modified as to the penalty. in all other respects. by 2 inches wide) and hacked Javier hitting him on the right palm of his hand. Emilio Erfe. Emilio then went to the house of Barangay Captain Menardo Soliven but not finding him there. Javier who was then unarmed ran away from Urbano but was overtaken by Urbano who hacked him again hitting Javier on the left leg with the back portion of said bolo. the Erfes together with Javier went to the police station of San Fabian to report the incident. the decision appealed from should be as it is hereby affirmed. rural health physician of San Fabian. be sentenced to an indeterminate penalty ranging from 10 years and 1 day of prision mayor to 17 years. Urbano went to the elevated portion of the canal to see what happened and there he saw Marcelo Javier and Emilio Erfe cutting grass. which was used in parrying the bolo hack.: This is a petition to review the decision of the then Intermediate Appellate Court which affirmed the decision of the then Circuit Criminal Court of Dagupan City finding petitioner Filomeno Urban guilty beyond reasonable doubt of the crime of homicide. The records disclose the following facts of the case. petitioner Filomeno Urbano went to his ricefield at Barangay Anonang. 4 months and 1 day ofreclusion temporal. who did not attend to Javier but instead suggested that they go to Dr. G. causing a swelling on said leg. Guillermo Padilla. 1980. his daughter embraced and prevented him from hacking Javier. Mario Meneses because Padilla had no available medicine. GUTIERREZ. Upon the advice of Solis. JR. At about 8:00 o'clock in the morning of October 23.. with costs against appellant Pablo Reloj. He asked them who was responsible for the opening of the irrigation canal and Javier admitted that he was the one.the crime of murder committed by appellant should be meted out in its minimum period and he should. and the costs. vs. Immediately thereafter. No. respondents. A quarrel between them ensued. Pangasinan located at about 100 meters from the tobacco seedbed of Marcelo Javier. It is so ordered. San Fabian.

1980. residing at Barangay Anonang. Urbano and Javier agreed to settle their differences. (p. Dr. 1980 at exactly 4:18 p.m. he and his companions returned to Dr. He noticed the presence of a healing wound in Javier's palm which could have been infected by tetanus. (p.After Javier was treated by Dr. Javier had lockjaw and was having convulsions. the additional P300.00 to Javier at the police station. On November 15. Exconde are as follows: Date Diagnosis 11-14-80 ADMITTED due to trismus adm. San Fabian. for they are neighbors and close relatives to each other. 88. This wound was presented to me only for medico-legal examination. Original Records) Upon the intercession of Councilman Solis. Pangasinan on October 23.m. 1980. When admitted to the hospital. As to my observation the incapacitation is from (7-9) days period. On November 3. the two accompanied by Solis appeared before the San Fabian Police to formalize their amicable settlement. Padilla issued a medico-legal certificate (Exhibit "C" dated September 28. 20 years of age. Dr. 1981) which reads: TO WHOM IT MAY CONCERN: This is to certify that I have examined the wound of Marcelo Javier.) Urbano advanced P400. to wit: xxx xxx xxx Entry Nr 599/27 Oct '80/103OH/ Re entry Nr 592 on page 257 both parties appeared before this Station accompanied by brgy. Javier was rushed to the Nazareth General Hospital in a very serious condition.00 for the medical expenses of Javier. Urbano promised to pay P700. on November 14. 1980 and found the following: 1 -Incised wound 2 inches in length at the upper portion of the lesser palmar prominence. at DX TETANUS 1:30 AM Still having frequent muscle spasm. councilman Felipe Solis and settled their case amicably. married. on October 27. Guillermo Padilla who conducted a medico-legal examination. Hence.00 was given to Javier at Urbano's house in the presence of barangay captain Soliven. Marcelo Javier accepted and granted forgiveness to Filomeno Urbano who shoulder (sic) all the expenses in his medical treatment. 1980. Edmundo Exconde who personally attended to Javier found that the latter's serious condition was caused by tetanus toxin. With diffi- . and promising to him and to this Office that this will never be repeated anymore and not to harbour any grudge against each other. 87. as it was already treated by the other doctor.. right. The medical findings of Dr. Meneses. Patrolman Torio recorded the event in the police blotter (Exhibit A). At about 1:30 a. Original Records. Javier died in the hospital.

as maximum. Febrile 11-15-80 Referred. 02 inhalation administered. the trial court found Urbano guilty as charged. Restless at times. 100. PMC done and cadaver brought home by rela- tives. Rizal upon finality of the decision. to indemnify the heirs of the victim. Pangasinan. Original Records) In an information dated April 10. 421 culty opening his mouth. The motion for new trial was based on an affidavit of Barangay Captain Menardo Soliven (Annex "A") which states: That in 1980. the sluice or control gates of the Bued irrigation dam which irrigates the ricefields of San Fabian were closed and/or controlled so much so that water and its flow to the canals and ditches were regulated and reduced. Filomeno Urbano was charged with the crime of homicide before the then Circuit Criminal Court of Dagupan City. That during the typhoon. in Muntinlupa. That sometime in the first week of November. IM. in view of the nature of his penalty. He was ordered confined at the New Bilibid Prison. Urbano pleaded "not guilty.M. as minimum to SEVENTEEN (17) years. 1980. Upon arraignment.000. together with the accessories of the law. and to pay the costs.00 with costs against the appellant. I was the barrio captain of Barrio Anonang.000. Third Judicial District. #35.00 without subsidiary imprisonment in case of insolvency. FOUR (4) MONTHS and ONE (1) DAY of reclusion temporal. San Fabian. The appellant filed a motion for reconsideration and/or new trial. there was a typhoon that swept Pangasinan and other places of Central Luzon including San Fabian. and up to the present having been re-elected to such position in the last barangay elections on May 17." After trial. inj. Pronounced dead by Dra. Ambo bag resuscita- tion and cardiac massage done but to no avail. Sudden cessa- tion of respiration and HR after muscular spasm. Novaldin 1 amp. in the amount of P12. Cabugao at 4:18 P. The then Intermediate Appellate Court affirmed the conviction of Urbano on appeal but raised the award of indemnity to the heirs of the deceased to P30. (p. He was sentenced to suffer an indeterminate prison term of from TWELVE (12) YEARS of prision mayor. Marcelo Javier. 1982. 1981. a town of said province. .

Rollo) The motion was denied. 1981. People v. and lately. (p. l980. the appellate court said: The claim of appellant that there was an efficient cause which supervened from the time the deceased was wounded to the time of his death. he was declared responsible for Javier's death.C. he died from tetanus. Red. Thus. 1. Dr. that he went to catch fish in dirty irrigation canals in the first week of . Hence. That few days there after. 5. Cardenas." Pursuant to this provision "an accused is criminally responsible for acts committed by him in violation of law and for all the natural and logical consequences resulting therefrom. Appellant's allegation that the proximate cause of the victim's death was due to his own negligence in going back to work without his wound being properly healed. People v. Said wound which was in the process of healing got infected with tetanus which ultimately caused his death.G. Edmundo Exconde of the Nazareth General Hospital testified that the victim suffered lockjaw because of the infection of the wound with tetanus. Cornel 78 Phil. this petition. I conducted a personal survey in the area affected. The case involves the application of Article 4 of the Revised Penal Code which provides that "Criminal liability shall be incurred: (1) By any person committing a felony (delito) although the wrongful act done be different from that which he intended . I came to know that said Marcelo Javier died of tetanus. 1980. R. which covers a period of 23 days does not deserve serious consideration. The record is clear that Marcelo Javier was hacked by the petitioner who used a bolo as a result of which Javier suffered a 2-inch incised wound on his right palm. (Article 4. the water in said canals and ditches became shallow which was suitable for catching mudfishes. the lower courts ruled that Javier's death was the natural and logical consequence of Urbano's unlawful act. Javier was rushed to the hospital in a very serious condition and that on the following day.P. November 15. but the cause of his death was due to said wound which was inflicted by the appellant. we gave due course to the petition. CA 43 O. p. In a resolution dated July 16. 78. That due to the locking of the sluice or control gates of the dam leading to the canals and ditches which will bring water to the ricefields. that on November 14. True. And there is no other way by which he could be infected with tetanus except through the wound in his palm (tsn. I saw the late Marcelo Javier catching fish in the shallow irrigation canals with some companions. par. 56 SCRA 631). that the deceased did not die right away from his wound. That on November 5. That after the storm." (People v. the proximate cause of the victim's death was the wound which got infected with tetanus.. Hence. 5072.or on November l5.. 1986. 418). 33. Under these circumstances. Consequently.. while I was conducting survey. 1981). with my secretary Perfecto Jaravata. Oct. 1981 which was the 22nd day after the incident. And the settled rule in this jurisdiction is that an accused is liable for all the consequences of his unlawful act.

In fact.. 1980. As the progresses. cited by plaintiffs-appellants in their brief. we adopted the following definition of proximate cause: xxx xxx xxx . et al. v. as to when the wound was infected is not clear from the record. and that Javier got infected with tetanus when after two weeks he returned to his farm and tended his tobacco plants with his bare hands exposing the wound to harmful elements like tetanus germs. A short incubation period indicates severe disease.. which.. which was already healing at the time Javier suffered the symptoms of the fatal ailment. and patients often complain of difficulty opening their mouths. and headache are encountered occasionally. i. it is impossible to conceive that the deceased would be reckless enough to work with a disabled hand. We look into the nature of tetanus- The incubation period of tetanus. and a desperate attempt by appellant to wiggle out of the predicament he found himself in.. trismus in the commonest manifestation of tetanus and . hinges on whether or not there was an efficient intervening cause from the time Javier was wounded until his death which would exculpate Urbano from any liability for Javier's death. However. "the proximate legal cause is that acting first and producing the injury. abdomen. either immediately or by setting other events in motion. in natural and continuous sequence. In Vda. 1181). irritability. somehow got infected with tetanus However. (pp. and without which the result would not have occurred. over 80 percent of patients become symptomatic within 14 days. ranges from 2 to 56 days.e." (at pp. If the wound had not yet healed. Rollo) The petitioner reiterates his position that the proximate cause of the death of Marcelo Javier was due to his own negligence. all constituting a natural and continuous chain of events."And more comprehensively. each having a close causal connection with its immediate predecessor. as an ordinarily prudent and intelligent person. and when symptoms occur within 2 or 3 days of injury the mortality rate approaches 100 percent. 20-21. "that cause. A satisfactory definition of proximate cause is found in Volume 38. unbroken by any efficient intervening cause. Mario Meneses found no tetanus in the injury. pages 695-696 of American Jurisprudence.. have reasonable ground to expect at the moment of his act or default that an injury to some person might probably result therefrom. or back and difficulty swallowing. the final event in the chain immediately effecting the injury as a natural and probable result of the cause which first acted. It is as follows: . The evidence on record does not clearly show that the wound inflicted by Urbano was infected with tetanus at the time of the infliction of the wound. therefore. that Dr. but the commonest presenting complaints are pain and stiffness in the jaw. November. 185-186) The issue. Medina (102 Phil. under such circumstances that the person responsible for the first event should. produces the injury. the time between injury and the appearance of unmistakable symptoms. stiffness gives way to rigidity. The evidence merely confirms that the wound. is an afterthought. Non-specific premonitory symptoms such as restlessness. de Bataclan.

1980. 1980. The rule is that the death of the victim must be the direct. This incident took place on October 23. like lockjaw and muscle spasms. 1983 Edition. severe trismus. rigidity becomes generalized. he died. Therefore. trismus is marked. Reflex spasm usually occur within 24 to 72 hours of the first symptom. The criteria for severe tetanus include a short incubation time. As the disease progresses. however. most muscles are involved to some degree. Javier. but ventilation remains adequate even during spasms. The following day. the proof that the accused caused the victim's death must convince a rational mind beyond reasonable doubt. dysphagia and rigidity and frequent prolonged. however. his wound could have been infected by tetanus 2 or 3 or a few but not 20 to 22 days before he died. which increases rigidity and causes simultaneous and excessive contraction of muscles and their antagonists. and the signs and symptoms encountered depend upon the major muscle groups affected. Javier suffered a 2-inch incised wound on his right palm when he parried the bolo which Urbano used in hacking him. a short onset time is associated with a poor prognosis. the severe form of tetanus that killed him was not yet present. and sustained contractions called risus sardonicus. As in the case of the incubation period. supra) And since we are dealing with a criminal conviction. natural. however. is responsible for the familiar descriptive name of lockjaw. The more credible conclusion is that at the time Javier's wound was inflicted by the appellant. only local signs and symptoms develop in the region of the injury. dysphagia and generalized rigidity are present. he suffered the symptoms of tetanus. Javier's wound could have been infected with tetanus after the hacking incident. medically speaking. Considering the circumstance surrounding Javier's death. In the case at bar. Moderately severe tetanus has a somewhat shorter incubation period and onset time. Cardenas. Trismus is usually present. Respiration may be impaired by laryngospasm or tonic contraction of respiratory muscles which prevent adequate ventilation. the onset time should have been more than six days. Spasms may be both painful and dangerous. it is more medically probable that Javier should have been infected with only a mild cause of tetanus because the symptoms of tetanus appeared on the 22nd day after the hacking incident or more than 14 days after the infliction of the wound. (People v. minimal or inapparent stimuli produce more intense and longer lasting spasms with increasing frequency. died on the second day from the onset time. pp. Mild tetanus is characterized by an incubation period of at least 14 days and an onset time of more than 6 days. an interval referred to as the onset time. (Harrison's Principle of Internal Medicine. or on November 14. lead us to a distinct possibility that the infection of the wound by tetanus was an efficient intervening cause later or . Emphasis supplied) Therefore. If. The medical findings. but dysphagia is absent and generalized spasms are brief and mild. Spasms are caused by sudden intensification of afferent stimuli arising in the periphery. As more muscles are involved. Consequently. 1980. The intensity and sequence of muscle involvement is quite variable. In the vast majority. In a small proportion of patients. the wound of Javier inflicted by the appellant was already infected by tetanus germs at the time. generalized convulsive spasms. therefore. and logical consequence of the wounds inflicted upon him by the accused. or less. Hypoxia may then lead to irreversible central nervous system damage and death. November 15. After 22 days.. and an onset time of 72 hrs. the reaction to tetanus found inside a man's body depends on the incubation period of the disease. 1004-1005.

It has given use to numberless instances of miscarriage of justice. where the acquittal was due to a reasonable doubt in the mind of the court as to the guilt of the accused. At the very least. therefore. has been explained by the Code Commission as follows: The old rule that the acquittal of the accused in a criminal case also releases him from civil liability is one of the most serious flaws in the Philippine legal system. such subsequent act or condition is the proximate cause. As we ruled in Manila Electric Co.R. (People v. only a preponderance of evidence is required in a civil action for damages. if there intervened between such prior or remote cause and the injury a distinct. The . And if an independent negligent act or defective condition sets into operation the instances which result in injury because of the prior defective condition. et al. 118). Rogelio Ligon y Tria. v. may still be civilly liable. Section 2(3). The well-settled doctrine is that a person. 129 SCRA 559). 125) It strains the judicial mind to allow a clear aggressor to go scot free of criminal liability. successive.R." (45 C. Civil Code). This settlement of minor offenses is allowed under the express provisions of Presidential Decree G. It does not necessarily follow that the petitioner is also free of civil liability. "A prior and remote cause cannot be made the be of an action if such remote cause did nothing more than furnish the condition or give rise to the occasion by which the injury was made possible. Doubts are present. The infection was. Rellin. If no danger existed in the condition except because of the independent cause. There is a likelihood that the wound was but the remote cause and its subsequent infection. The judgment of acquittal extinguishes the civil liability of the accused only when it includes a declaration that the facts from which the civil liability might arise did not exist. 127 SCRA 16). in the recent case of People v. (See also People v. 1508. et al. 931-932). such condition was not the proximate cause. and efficient cause of the injury. which provides that the acquittal of the accused on the ground that his guilt has not been proved beyond reasonable doubt does not necessarily exempt him from civil liability for the same act or omission. 77 Phil. Caruncho. After the hacking incident. however. We must stress. 1987). unrelated. Urbano and Javier used the facilities of barangay mediators to effect a compromise agreement where Javier forgave Urbano while Urbano defrayed the medical expenses of Javier. with tetanus may have been the proximate cause of Javier's death with which the petitioner had nothing to do. distinct and foreign to the crime. However. (at p.. the petitioner's criminal liability in this respect was wiped out by the victim's own act.J. No. Remoquillo. (G. While the guilt of the accused in a criminal prosecution must be established beyond reasonable doubt.. Court of Appeals. that our discussion of proximate cause and remote cause is limited to the criminal aspects of this rather unusual case. while not criminally liable. 74041. (Article 29.between the time Javier was wounded to the time of his death. (99 Phil. The reason for the provisions of article 29 of the Civil Code. pp. the records show he is guilty of inflicting slight physical injuries. even though such injury would not have happened but for such condition or occasion. for failure to take necessary precautions. (Padilla v. July 29. No. we said: xxx xxx xxx . Thus. 1038).

But for the purpose of indemnity the complaining party. This is one of those causes where confused thinking leads to unfortunate and deplorable consequences." It is just and proper that. the civil liability of the petitioner was not thoroughly examined. private rights. WHEREFORE. is REVERSED and SET ASIDE. for the purposes of the imprisonment of or fine upon the accused. The two liabilities are separate and distinct from each other.000. reasoning followed is that inasmuch as the civil responsibility is derived from the criminal offense.00 indemnification imposed by the trial court to P30. . The petitioner is ACQUITTED of the crime of homicide. The questioned decision of the then Intermediate Appellate Court. One is for the punishment or correction of the offender while the other is for reparation of damages suffered by the aggrieved party. It will close up an inexhaustible source of injustice-a cause for disillusionment on the part of the innumerable persons injured or wronged. civil liability cannot be demanded. now Court of Appeals. the instant petition is hereby GRANTED.00. However. the offense should be proved beyond reasonable doubt." The respondent court increased the P12.000. Such reasoning fails to draw a clear line of demarcation between criminal liability and civil responsibility. since the indemnification was based solely on the finding of guilt beyond reasonable doubt in the homicide case. but the public action for the imposition of the legal penalty shall not thereby be extinguished. when the latter is not proved. It will correct a serious defect in our law. Costs de oficio. The two responsibilities are so different from each other that article 1813 of the present (Spanish) Civil Code reads thus: "There may be a compromise upon the civil action arising from a crime. SO ORDERED. and to determine the logical result of the distinction. the Commission recommends the adoption of the reform under discussion. why should the offense also be proved beyond reasonable doubt? Is not the invasion or violation of every private right to be proved only by a preponderance of evidence? Is the right of the aggrieved person any less private because the wrongful act is also punishable by the criminal law? "For these reasons. This aspect of the case calls for fuller development if the heirs of the victim are so minded. One affects the social order and the other.

and to pay the costs • Art. even if completed. 1992 Lessons Applicable: Laws Applicable: FACTS: • February 4.G. legally impossible of accomplishment . petition is hereby GRANTED. there is a performance of the intended physical act 4. Palangpangan's absence from her room on the night he and his companions riddled it with bullets made the crime inherently impossible. 1979: Sulpicio Intod. 4(2). 4 (2) HELD: YES. sentences him to suffer the penalty of six (6) months of arresto mayor. 103119 October 21. together with the accessory penalties provided by the law. Jorge Pangasian. the consequence resulting from the intended act does not amount to a crime o Ex: The impossibility of killing a person already dead • Factual impossibility occurs when extraneous circumstances unknown to the actor or beyond his control prevent the consummation of the intended crime – this case o Ex: man who puts his hand in the coat pocket of another with the intention to steal the latter's wallet and finds the pocket empty • United States: where the offense sought to be committed is factually impossible or accomplishment . 1979 10:00 pm: All of them armed arrived at Palangpangan's house and fired at Palangpangan's bedroom but there was no one in the room. No. • The Revised Penal Code. — Criminal Responsibility shall be incurred: xxx xxx xxx 2. 4(2) • Legal impossibility occurs where the intended acts. were it not for the inherent impossibility of its accomplishment or on account of the employment of inadequate or ineffectual means. Petitioner contends that. the motive. • RTC: convicted Intod of attempted murder based on the testimony of the witness ISSUE: W/N Intod is guilty attempted murder since it is an impossible crime under Art. desire and expectation is to perform an act in violation of the law 2. Otherwise.cannot be held liable for any crime . • February 4. CRIMINAL RESPONSIBILITY. Santos Tubio and Avelino Daligdig went to Salvador Mandaya's house and asked him to go with them to the house of Bernardina Palangpangan. Thereafter. they had a meeting with Aniceto Dumalagan who told Mandaya that he wanted Palangpangan to be killed because of a land dispute between them and that Mandaya should accompany them.attempt to commit a crime. recognizes in the offender his formidability to punish criminal tendencies in Art. there is intention to perform the physical act 3. the decision of respondent Court of Appeals holding Petitioner guilty of Attempted Murder is hereby MODIFIED. would not amount to a crime • Legal impossibility would apply to those circumstances where 1. By any person performing an act which would be an offense against persons or property. he would also be killed. inspired by the Positivist School.R.