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INJURY DUE TO FULFILLMENT OF DUTY/LAWFUL EXERCISE OF RIGHT

PEOPLE VS. ULEP (340 SCRA 688)


Issue: Whether or not SPO1 Ulep is guilty of murder? – NO. He is guilty of Homicide.

Facts: Wapili was having a high fever and heard talking insensibly to himself. Moments later
Leydan, his brother in law, heard a disturbance in Wapili’s room. Unable to pacify Wapili, they
called a Pastor to help him pray over but can’t because he became wild and violent. When
Wapili went out naked and berserk, Leydan called sheriff Plando then the latter called SPO1
Ulep and 2 others. They arrived at the scene and they claim that Wapili was armed with bolo
and rattan stool, in which the relatives contend that he only has rattan stool. Ulep fired a
warning shot and told him put down his weapons or they’d shoot him. Wapili cried “pusila!”
(fire!) and went towards the police. Ulep shot him in the multiple parts of his body and as the
victim slumped to the ground, Ulep came closer and shot him in the head.

Held: Before the justifying circumstance of fulfillment of a duty under Art. 11, par. 5, of The
Revised Penal Code may be successfully invoked, the accused must prove the presence of two
(2) requisites, namely, that he acted in the performance of a duty or in the lawful exercise of a
right or an office, and that the injury caused or the offense committed be the necessary
consequence of the due performance of duty or the lawful exercise of such right or office.

During the first stage, the victim threatened the safety of the police officers by
menacingly advancing towards them despite the warning shot. As a police officer, it is to be
expected that accused-appellant would stand his ground. Up to that point, his decision to
respond with a barrage of gunfire to halt the victim's further advance was justified under the
circumstances. However, he cannot be exonerated from overdoing his duty during the second
stage of the incident — when he fatally shot the victim in the head even after the latter
slumped to the ground due to multiple gunshot wounds sustained. Ulep should have ceased
firing at the victim the moment he saw the latter fall to the ground. The victim at that point no
longer posed a threat and was already incapable of mounting an aggression against the police
officers.

DISTINGUISHED FROM SELF DEFENSE- ELEMENTS


CABANLIG VS. SANDIGANBAYAN (464 SCRA 324)
Issue: Whether or not Cabanlig is guilty of homicide as convicted by the Sandiganbayan? – NO.
He must be acquitted.

Facts:
Valino and 2 others were jailed for the robbery happened 4 days prior. Valino claimed that he
moved the missing flower vase and radio. To retrieve the items, Cabanlig released Valino and
brought with him 4 other cops to accompany him. Just after the jeep, which they were riding,
passed the PNR bridge, Valino grabbed Mercado’s M 16 armalite and jumped out of the jeep.
Without issuing any warning of any sort, and with one foot on the running board, fired one shot
at Valino and 4 more successive shots after 2-3 seconds. Valino did not fire any shot. Cabanlig
admitted shooting Valino but he invoked and it was an act of self-defense and performance of
duty.
Held: Self-defense is based on the principle of self-preservation from mortal harm, while
fulfillment of duty is premised on the due performance of duty. The elements of self-defense
are (1) unlawful aggression, (2) reasonable necessity of the means employed to prevent or
repel it, and (3) lack of sufficient provocation on the part of the person defending himself. The
requisites of fulfillment of duty are (1) the accused acted in the performance of a duty or in the
lawful exercise of a right or office and (2) the injury caused or the offense committed be the
necessary consequence of the due performance of duty or the lawful exercise of such right or
office.
Cabanlig was in the performance of their duty when he shot Valino. Valino was
committing an offense when he grabbed the M16 Armalite. The policemen had the duty not
only to apprehend Valino but also retrieve the firearm. They were facing imminent danger as
Valino had with him the armalite, so the policemen had to act swiftly. The duty to issue a
warning shot is not absolutely mandated at all times at all cost, to the detriment life of law
enforcers. In this case, the policemen didn’t have the luxury of time, neither did they have a
choice. Hence, Cabanlig must be acquitted.

SELF DEFENSE

PEOPLE VS. REYES (61 PHIL 344)


Issue: Whether or not the accused is guilty of homicide or should be acquitted because of self
defense? – GUILTY. (ABAD SANTOS DISSENTING: ACQUITTED, SELF DEFENSE VALID DEFENSE)

Facts: The victim and Reyes were about to be married. One night, during a dance after a barrio
procession, the victim told Reyes that she can’t return to him anymore and is instead going with
her parents to Catanduanes. Reyes dragged the victim towards the street and stabbed her in
the chest with a fanknife. The victim ran to a barrio lieutenant, and, although the wound was
only a scratch, fell dead at the foot of the staircase, the cause of her death being shock. Reyes
claims that he had no intent to kill the victim and was only acting in self-defense because he
believed that the three men who were with the victim were going to attack him. The court
believes that Reyes’ overt acts (stabbing the victim with a lethal weapon) constitute death as a
legal consequence. Thus, he had criminal intent.

Held: The court found Reyes guilty of homicide, for they say that the means employed
contradict the claim of Reyes that he had no intention to commit homicide. HOWEVER, Justice
Abad Santos’ dissenting opinion believes that he should be acquitted. The physician who
examined the body found the wound to be a mere scratch – under ordinary circumstances,
this would not have resulted to death. Thus, it is believable that Reyes was attacked by the
three men, and, as a result of the fight, the victim was accidentally wounded.

PEOPLE VS. JARIGUE (76 PHIL 174)


Issue: Whether or not the Avelina Jarigue is guilty of homicide? – YES, REDUCED SENTENCE
(ARRESTO MAYOR AND PRISION CORRECCIONAL).
Facts: The victim had liked Avelina for a long time and would often profess his feelings for her.
She would always refuse. There was even an instance where the victim climbed up Avelina’s
house and sneaked into her bedroom and tried to rape her. She shouted for help and the victim
was caught by Avelina’s father. Ever since then, she would always carry a knife with her for self
protection. In the case at hand, the accused and victim were in the barrio chapel when the
victim sat beside Avelina and put his hand on her thigh. Avelina wanted to punish the victim’s
hand with her fan knife, but the victim seized Avelina's right hand, so she quickly grabbed the
knife with her left hand and stabbed the victim once at the base of the left side of the neck,
inflicting upon him a wound about 4 1/2 inches deep, which was necessarily mortal. Victim
died.

Held:. Self-defense is a justifying circumstance if there is unlawful aggression. There is unlawful


aggression when there is peril to one’s life or person There must be actual and imminent
physical force or actual use of a weapon. When the victim put his hand on Avelina’s thigh in the
chapel, there were a lot of people present, including Avelina’s own father and a barrio
lieutenant, and so, there was no possibility of her being raped. The means she employed (knife
to the neck) were excessive, and she cannot be exempt from criminal liability.

MAHAWAN vs. PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES (G.R. 176609)


Issue: Whether or not the petitioner failed to establish unlawful aggression on the part of
Paradero. – YES.

Facts: Paradero operates a store on the ground floor of her house. One day, the petitioner
asked for a bottle of beer. When Paradero told him that there was no beer, the petitioner snuck
in the store and pulled out a caliber .38 revolver and shot complainant on her left chest.
Paradero grabbed a kitchen knife to defend herself, but the petitioner shot her again, merely
grazing her left earlobe. An information was filed against the petitioner for frustrated homicide.
Petitioner invoked self-defense.

Held: The fact that petitioner sustained injuries on his hand and stomach, allegedly caused by Paradero’s knife,
does not signify that he was a victim of unlawful aggression. Petitioner was discharged on the same day he was
treated in the hospital. The superficiality of the injuries was not an indication that his life was in actual peril.
Also, the second element of self-defense requires that the means employed by the person defending himself
must be reasonably necessary to prevent or repel the unlawful aggression of the victim. There was no reason or
necessity for petitioner to shoot Paradero with a gun. Paradero was merely tending her store and did not
attack or place in danger the life of petitioner during the incident. Further, when Paradero allegedly
approached and tried to stab him, petitioner was not corrnered where he had no way out. Also, petitioner
provoked Paradero and not the other way around. Hence, the element of lack of sufficient provocation on the
part of the person making the defense is also wanting in the present case.

NACARIO VS. PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES (GR NO. 173106)


Issue: Whether or not Nacario can invoke self-defense as a justifying circumstance? – NO.
Guilty of frustrated murder.
Facts: The victim was riding a bicycle along a road and met Nacario who was also riding a
bicycle from the opposite direction. When they both got off their bikes, Nacario stabbed the
victim with a fan knife and hit his spleen. Nacario surrendered to the police but stated that he
was acting in self defense. He claims that the victim blocked his path and swung a fan knife
toward him but missed. After that, the victim tried to hit him again three times, but also missed
because he “always swung his body backward.” On the last attempt, Nacario claims he was able
to wrestle the knife from the victim. The victim turned his back and started to pick up stones,
and, sensing danger, Nacario stabbed him with the knife. Nacario also claims that there had
been numerous attempts from the victim to stab him, and that the victim’s brother also
harassed and threatened him.

Held: Petitioner cannot invoke unlawful aggression (key element of self-defense) because, at
the instant that the victim ceased to hold his fan knife, there was no longer any imminent risk
to the petitioner’s life or personal safety. Also, in the instance that the victim allegedly turned
his back to pick up stones, petitioner had ample time to which he could have ran away. The
court also finds odd that the victim could allegedly throw stones from such a short distance
where petitioner could reach for his knife.

“It is a statutory and doctrinal requirement that the presence of unlawful aggression is a
condition sine qua non for self-defense to be a justifying circumstance. Such element not
being present on the victim’s part, discussion of the rest of the elements of self-defense is
rendered unnecessary.”