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2 Pop Vs Castor Batin Personal Digest




PEOPLE OF THEPHILIPPINES, leaning against the mango tree on the side of St.

Peter Street, she
Plaintiff-Appellee, went to him. She tried to talk Eugenio into going home with her
- versus – because Castor was again into one of his wild ways (Nagwawala
CASTOR BATIN, na naman, daldal ng daldal). As he was talking with Eugenio,
Accused-Appellant. she glanced to her left and saw Neil Batin standing at the gate to
their (Batins) compound, looking towards her and her
G.R. No. 177223 husband. A few moments later, Neil went to one of the parked
cars, opened its door, and took a gun from inside. She next
Promulgated: noticed Castor going towards Neil as the latter stood at the side
November 28, 2007 of the car and shouting: Huwag! Castor grabbed the gun from
Neil. After the gun was taken from him, Neil just proceeded
NOTE: This case is a review of the Decision of CA dated 6 towards the right rear of the car.Castor followed Neil and handed
February 2007 affirming the Decision of the Regional Trial the gun back to him.
Court (RTC) of Quezon City, convicting father and son, Castor
and Neil Batin, of the crime of murder. The conviction was for When she shifted her glance from the Batins, Josephine
the killing of one Eugenio Refugio, who was shot in the heard Castor ordering his son: Sige, banatan mo na. Neil
afternoon of 21 October 1994, while he was leaning against a responded by drawing the gun from his waistline, raising and
mango tree near his house on St. Peter Street, San Paolo aiming it at her and her husband, and firing twice from his eye-
Subdivision, Nagkakaisang Nayon, Novaliches, Quezon City. level. Both Josephine and Eugenio fell to the ground, the former,
backwards, and the latter landing on top of her. As they tried to
get up, Eugenio uttered to her: Nanay, may tama ako. She then
pulled her husband by the shoulder of his shirt so that she could
That on or about the 21st day of October, 1994, in Quezon take him to their house as he was already slumped to the
City, Philippines, the above-named accused, conspiring right. She later rushed her husband to the Quezon City
together, confederating with and mutually helping each other, General Hospital, where he underwent surgery, but later expired.
did, then and there, wilfully, unlawfully and feloniously, with
intent to kill, with treachery, taking advantage of superior THE DEFENSE’S ALIBI:
strength, and with evident premeditation, attack, assault and
employ personal violence upon the person of one EUGENIO The defense, on the other hand, presented accused Neil
REFUGIO y ZOSA, by then and there shooting him with a Batin, Castors common-law wife Maricon Pantoja, and one
handgun, hitting him on the right side of his stomach, thereby
inflicting upon him serious and mortal wounds which were the Restituto Paller. Neil Batins testimony is summarized by the
direct and immediate cause of his untimely death, to the trial court as follows:
damage and prejudice of the heirs of said Eugenio Refugio y
Zosa, in such amount as may be awarded under the provisions Neil substantially claimed that it was his responsibility
of the Civil Code. to conduct his younger brothers to school and fetch them by
car; that he also drove their taxicab; that it was about 7:00
The prosecutors presented witnesses Eusebio oclock in morning of October 21, 1994, while he was cleaning
Farrales, Vilma Juadinez Rodriguez, Florante Baltazar, the family-owned taxicab, that he found a short gun (de bola)
Josephine Refugio, PO3 Marifor Segundo and Police underneath it beside the right rear wheel; that he picked the
Inspector Solomon Segundo who presented the following facts: gun and concealed it in the compartment of the taxicab; that he
continued with his chore of cleaning; that as soon as he
Eugenios wife, Josephine Refugio, was with him when he was finished cleaning the taxicab, he drove the white Datsun car to
shot, facing him as he leaned against the mango tree and, in fact, Tondo to fetch his six-year old brother Mark, the son of his
had her arms resting on his shoulders. She recalled that before father with Maricon Pantoja; that Mark was a pupil at the
the shooting, she was at home at No. 4-A St. Peter Street that Magat Salamat Elementary School in Tondo; that after picking
afternoon when, looking out of the window, she caught sight of up Mark, they drove to the house of his uncle, Domingo Batin,
Castor Batin washing his feet at a nearby faucet. Castor was in Marulas, Valenzuela, to get his clothes from his cousin; that
angrily muttering, and she distinctly heard him say, among the they arrived there at 11:00 am, and spent around two hours
other things he said: Mga matatandang kunsintidor, dapat there; that from Marulas, they went home, arriving at St. Peter
manahimik na. Then, being through with washing himself, Street at around 2:30 pm; that he parked the car on the road in
Castor moved towards the street. Seeing this, she went down and front of their fence; that he and Mark first entered the house to
also went to the street because of a feeling of uneasiness deposit Marks school things and later went outside to await
(Para po akong kinakabahan, kasi, ganoon naman ang the arrival of Marks mother; that his other brothers were
ginagawa nila lagi, eh, pag nalalasing). Finding her husband outside; that Castor was also outside talking with a man whose

WON THERE WAS CONSPIRACY Maricon testified that she. He thus drew the gun and turned around. causing the gun to fire twice (Tumalikod po ako. However.00. that he did not enter the compound to wit: put bullets in the gun. 2] P61.[11] AFFIRMED with MODIFICATION as to civil liabilities. Maricon came out to WHEREFORE. he suddenly felt the impulse of drawing the they are hereby each sentenced to suffer reclusion perpetua. I. He insisted that he and the Refugios.00 and the indemnity for loss of witnesses. II.00. and At the sound of gunfire. Neil concealed the gun in the ceiling of the aunts house. the awards for death indemnity and actual damages are retained. to Having thus tucked the gun.920. shouting twice to Neil and Castor Batin filed an appeal with the Court of his son: Huwag! Pantoja. WON TREACHY IS PRESENT IN [12] THE CASE TO QUALIFIED IT AS in her affidavit. The trial court found glaring Maricon Pantojas self-contradiction as to where she and ISSUE: the accused were when Eugenio was shot. but denied seeing them 4] P307. he accidentally pulled the trigger. the Decision of the trial court.000. that his father did not order him to shoot Eugenio.000. where she brought him inside the house of his aunt.00. contradictions it found in their testimonies. Neil and Castor were outside their IN THE KILLING OF EUGENIO REFUGIO house when Neil drew the gun and accidentally fired. WON THE LOWER COURTS ERRED IN GIVING CIVIL . with foregoing. his wife Josephine because they were his neighbors with only a high wall separating their houses. JOSEPHINE REFUGIO. at around 2:45 pm. as amended. It was while he was standing there with the others that. judgment is hereby rendered finding the street at that point to ask him about the time he had fetched the accused CASTOR BATIN and NEIL BATIN guilty beyond reasonable doubt of the crime of MURDER as defined and Mark. that Pantoja soon arrived he was hit by a bullet. she alleged that they went outside their house MURDER upon hearing a gun explosion and saw Eugenio Refugio alone III. the decision of the Regional Trial whom he was acquainted since 1987. 1994. as moral damages. and gun from his waistline (Bigla kong naisipang bunutin ang ordered to pay the heirs of EUGENIO REFUGIO. the trial court could not make an intelligible narrative earning capacity which is increased of the version of the facts presented by them. CA RULING: Court of Appeals rendered the assailed Decision Neil said that he and his father did not grapple inside the Datsun car for possession of the gun. With the exception of the award of As regards the testimonies of the defenses two other moral damages which is reduced to P100. forced Neil to enter the Appeals compound. and according to Neil. as indemnity for lost that afternoon beside the mango tree. for he even had shared drinks with the late Criminal Case No. with modification. as death indemnity. the trial court rendered its Decision it in his waistline. During the trial. that his father did not affirming. that he continued talking and playing with his brothers. as actual damages. Castor rushed towards Neil 5] The costs of suit. through his baril). penalized under Art. pumutok ng 1] P50. as follows: so. finding both accused guilty of murder. and that his father was not drunk and challenging WHEREFORE. but. and that at that point he decided to take the gun RTC RULING: from the compartment of the taxicab then parked around 2 meters away from where he and his brothers were and tucked On 8 June 1998. dalawang beses). Revised Penal Code. 248. Neil admitted knowing the late Eugenio Refugio and 3] P500. tapos nakalabit ko. as he did wife. of earning capacity.500. that Iigos house was 15 meters from their gate. had no Court of Quezon City. to wrest the gun from him. in view of the others to a fight. for her part.00. from where he was in front of Iigos house. considering the toP723.00. qualified by treachery.000. Neil went to stand at the wit: right rear side of the Datsun car which was parked facing the mango tree (halos magkatapat lang po). Q-95-61003 is hereby Eugenio before October 21.840. Metro Manila in misunderstandings. name he did not know but whom he had seen thrice before as holding his stomach x x x we have no any knowledge whether well as with Boy Iigo in front of the latters house.

the theory presented by the prosecution in purpose. banatan mo na cannot be considered as the circumstances only confirm the conspiracy between the Batins in moving cause of the shooting. TheP61.Eusebio Farrales and Vilma Juadinez Rodriguez -- forms in the execution thereof which tend directly and specially testified to the fact that Castor handed the gun to Neil and urged to ensure its execution.00 in actual doubted. could not provide any reason PETITIONERS. the act of one is the act There is treachery when the offender commits any of of all. If conspiracy is proven. The trial court. if he had committing the crime: after the Batins grappled for the gun and wanted his son to shoot Eusebio Refugio. the Court finds that Like in the previous three cases. banatan mo na. but to force him to leave the use of the gun to Castor. As stated above. Castor was as COMPUTING THE CIVIL LIABILITIES. the widow. Jurisprudence pegs the death indemnity in the above The reliability of witnesses Farrales amount (P50. and concurrence of sentiments both the Information and in their arguments before the courts is not Castors being a principal by inducement. much liable criminally for the death of Eugenio as Neil. deduced from the acts of the appellants before. this Court found the Castor and Neil conspired in shooting Information to have sufficiently alleged treachery as a qualifying Eugenio. (This are the Jurisprudence) From its careful and thorough evaluation of the record. during. in fact. The . found Lab-eo. These the words Sige. not to stop Neil from firing the participated in the shooting. Being the neighbors of both the Batins and the Refugios.000. without risk to himself arising from the the latter to fire at the Refugio spouses. assessment of the credibility of witnesses deserves great respect. Opuran. methods. and that Neil then fired his gun twice were credible and sufficed to prove THIRD ISSUE:YES LOWER COURTS ERRED IN Castors indispensable cooperation in the killing of Eugenio. LIABILITES FOR THE accused. he would not have Castor shouted Huwag. People v. Conspiracy may also be WE ARE NOT PERSUADED. employing means. Neil a crystal-clear expression of the agreement of the Batins concerning the commission of a felony. the reasons therefor could be he instigated Neil to shoot by shouting: Sige. expression and demeanor of the witnesses at the trial. No proof thereof is required. since it had the important opportunity to observe first-hand the The court cited cases of People v. cannot be the matter. and that (h)is alleged utterance of gun. Evidentiary facts need not be alleged in the the testimonies of the Prosecution witnesses information because these are matters of defense. concerted action. Castor finally decided to give the gun to shouted Huwag and struggled for possession of the gun. Josephine Refugio.[21] SC RULING: FIRST ISSUE: YES THERE IS A As concluded by the trial court. and the the crimes against a person.00) pursuant to the current judicial policy on and Rodriguez. was. This finding is inexorable because circumstance. or neighbors -. Accordingly. or motive for them to testify against the Batins unless it was upon the truth. their claim of damages consists of the expenses incurred by the family of witnessing the events that culminated into the Eugenio Refugio. but rather his being SECOND ISSUE: YES TREACHERY IS PRESENT a co-conspirator. Bajar which have similar situation in the these witnesses credible.500. thus: case at bar. the direct participant in the killing. for one. According to Castor. and after the commission of the crime which are indicative of a joint First of all. whose defense which the offended party might make. and People v. Informations that Castor returned the gun back to Neil. proved during the trial. which Josephine Refugio testified to and was shooting of Eugenio was unassailable. the circumstances CONSPIRACY surrounding Castors utterance of Huwag! shows beyond doubt Castor claims that there is no conclusive proof that he that Castor shouted the same. that need only state the ultimate facts.

00 for medicines.000. who was 31 years old at the time of his death.[38] (2) P20. the Court of Appeals found the award [38] emergency treatment.[40] Pleyto offers the following computation for the award for loss of earning capacity: Net Earning = 2/3 x (80 Age at x (Gross Annual Capacity time of death) Income Reasonable & Necessary Living Expenses) Eugenio Refugio.00. finding the work of Eugenio Refugio to be hazardous.620)] Capacity Net Earning = 32 x [P22.000. and (3) P6.000. and instead inclusive of the costs of coffin.000.500.840[41] Capacity . inclusive of the costs of coffin. of P500.00 for funeral expenses. however.620] Capacity Net Earning = P723. In accord with prevailing [39] during the wake. we further reduce this amount medicines. The Court of Appeals multiplied this amount by 26 working days to get Eugenio Refugios monthly income of P3. and expenses during the wake. the Decision of the Court of Appeals funeral expenses.00 as Castor Batin for murder is AFFIRMED withFURTHER for burial expenses.summarized in Exhibit H:[37] (1)P25. The Court of Appeals thus applied the Pleyto formula as follows: Net Earning = 2/3 x (80 31) x [(P3770 x 12) (P3770 x 12)] Capacity Net Earning = 2/3 x (49) x [(P45.00 for WHEREFORE.770.00. The trial court. surgery and other expenses for the to P50.00. MODIFICATION as to the amount of the moral damages.[42] hospitalization and emergency treatment.000. surgery and other expenses for the hospitalization and Lastly. (2) P20.240) (P22. The Court of Appeals also modified the trial courts SO ORDERED.00 as for burial expenses. funeral services. which is hereby reduced to P50. jurisprudence. had a daily income of P145. Lomboy.00. and expenses fixed the amount at P100. funeral affirming with modification the conviction of accused-appellant [39] services.500.000.00. and (3) P6. reduced his life expectancy to 20 years. computation of the indemnity for loss of earning capacity.000.00 as moral damages to be excessive. This modification is in accord with our ruling in Pleyto v.