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2. DABALOS (Y SAN DIEGO) v. RTC, BR 59, ANGELES CITY (PAMPANGA), ET AL. [G.R. No. 193960, J !

" #$ 0%, 2013& PERLAS'BERNABE, J.( )ACTS( Before the Court is a petition for certiorari and prohibition assailing the Orders of the (RTC) of Angeles City, Branch 59 which denied petitioner s !otion for "udicial #eter$ination of %robable Cause with !otion to &uash the 'nfor$ation( %etitioner was charged with )iolation of *ection 5(a) of RA 9+,+ before the RTC of Angeles City, Branch 59, in an 'nfor$ation- . . . the abo)e/ na$ed accused, being then the boyfriend of the co$plainant, . . . did then and there wilfully, unlawfully and feloniously use personal )iolence 0on1 the co$plainant, by pulling her hair, punching co$plainant s bac2, shoulder and left eye, thereby de$eaning and degrading the co$plainant s intrinsic worth and dignity as a hu$an being, in )iolation of *ection 5(a) of the Republic Act 9+,+(345r67l8 RTC found probable cause and conse9uently, issued a warrant of arrest( The latter posted a cash bond and on August 8+, +:8:, filed a !otion for "udicial #eter$ination of %robable Cause with !otion to &uash the 'nfor$ation( %etitioner a)erred that at the ti$e of the alleged incident on "uly 8;, +::9, *+ , - !o .o!/+# 0! #+-3o!1+!25 *+!6+, RA 9262 , - 0! 33.06 7.+( 1 20!/ #+. 20o!-*03 ,02* 3#04 2+

'n her affida)it, pri)ate respondent ad$itted that her relationship with petitioner had ended prior to the sub<ect incident( *he narrated that she sought pay$ent of the $oney she had lent to petitioner but the latter could not pay( *he then in9uired fro$ petitioner if he was responsible for spreading ru$ors about her which he ad$itted( Thereupon, pri)ate respondent slapped petitioner causing the latter to inflict on her the physical in<uries alleged in the 'nfor$ation( The RTC denied petitioner s $otion( 't did not consider $aterial the fact that the parties dating relationship had ceased prior to the incident(

ISS8ES( =>n the act of petitioner which resulted in physical in<uries to pri)ate respondent is not co)ered by RA 9+,+ because its pro.i$ate cause was not their dating relationship( 'nstead, he clai$s that the offense co$$itted was only slight physical in<uries under the Re)ised %enal Code which falls under the <urisdiction of the !unicipal Trial Court( 9ELD( The petition has no $erit( The Court is not persuaded( *ec( ;(a) of RA 9+,+ reads- *?C( ;( Definition of Terms./ As used in this Act, (a) @ Violence against women and their children@ refers to any act or a series of acts co$$itted by any person against a wo$an who is his wife, for$er wife, or against a wo$an with who$ the person has or had a se.ual or dating relationship, or with who$ he has a co$$on child, or against her child whether legiti$ate or illegiti$ate, within or without the fa$ily abode, which result in or is li2ely to result in physical, se.ual, psychological har$ or suffering, or econo$ic abuse including threats of such acts, battery, assault, coercion, harass$ent or arbitrary depri)ation of liberty( . . .( T*+ . , 0- 7#o 1 0! -6o3+ 7"2 -3+60:0+- 2,o .0;020!/ <" .0:06 20o!- :o# any 62 o# -+#0+- o: 62- 2o 7+ 6o!-01+#+1 - 6#0;+ o: 40o.+!6+ / 0!-2 ,o;+! 2*#o"/* 3*$-06 . * #;, ! ;+.$( 1) 02 0- 6o;;022+1 / 0!-2 ,o; ! o# *+# 6*0.1 !1 2*+ ,o; ! 0- 2*+ o::+!1+#=- ,0:+, :o#;+# ,0:+, o# ,02* ,*o; *+ * - o# * 1 -+>" . o# 1 20!/ #+. 20o!-*03 o# ,02* ,*o; *+ * - 6o;;o! 6*0.15 !1 2) 02 #+-".2- 0! o# 0.0?+.$ 2o #+-".2 0! 3*$-06 . * #; o# -"::+#0!/. 'n Ang v. Court of Appeals,5 the Court enu$erated the ele$ents of the cri$e of )iolence against wo$en through harass$ent, to wit- 8( The offender has or had a se.ual or dating relationship with the offended wo$anA +( The offender, by hi$self or through another, co$$its an act or series of acts of harass$ent against the wo$anA and ;( The harass$ent alar$s or causes substantial e$otional or psychological distress to her(,45r67l8 Botably, while it is re9uired that the offender has or had a se.ual or dating relationship with the offended wo$an, for RA 9+,+ to be applicable, it is not indispensable that the act of )iolence be a conse9uence of such relationship( Bowhere in the law can such li$itation be inferred( Cence, applying the rule on statutory construction that when the law does not distinguish, neither should the courts, then, clearly, the punishable acts refer to all acts of )iolence against wo$en with who$ the offender has or had a se.ual or dating relationship( A- 6o##+62.$ #".+1 7$ 2*+ RTC, 02 0- 0;; 2+#0 . ,*+2*+# 2*+ #+. 20o!-*03 * 1 6+ -+1 :o# - .o!/ - 2*+#+ 0- -"::060+!2 +401+!6+ -*o,0!/ 2*+ 3 -2 o# 3#+-+!2 +>0-2+!6+ o: -"6* #+. 20o!-*03 7+2,++! 2*+ o::+!1+# !1 2*+ 40620; ,*+! 2*+ 3*$-06 . * #; , - 6o;;022+1. Conse9uently, the Court cannot depart fro$ the parallelis$ in Ang and gi)e credence to petitioner s assertion that the act of )iolence should be due to the se.ual or dating relationship( Beither can the Court construe the statute in fa)or of petitioner using the rule of lenity D because there is no a$biguity in RA 9+,+ that would necessitate any construction( =hile the degree of physical har$ under RA 9+,+ and Article +,, E of the Re)ised %enal Code are the sa$e, there is sufficient <ustification for prescribing a higher penalty for the for$er( Clearly, the legislati)e intent is to purposely i$pose a $ore se)ere sanction on the offenders whose )iolent act>s physically har$ wo$en with who$ they ha)e or had a se.ual or dating relationship, and>or their children with the end in )iew of pro$oting the protection of wo$en and children( Accordingly, the 'nfor$ation ha)ing sufficiently alleged the necessary ele$ents of the cri$e, such as- a dating relationship between the petitioner and the pri)ate respondentA the act of )iolence co$$itted by the petitionerA and the resulting physical har$ to pri)ate respondent, the offense is co)ered by RA 9+,+ which falls under the <urisdiction of the RTC in accordance with *ec( D of the said law( @9ERE)ORE, the petition is DISMISSED(