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G.R. No.

172716 November 17, 2010


Jason Ivler v. Hon. Rowena Modesto and Evangeline Ponce

Facts:
1. Ivler was involved in a vehicular accident where he injured private respondent Evangeline Ponce
and killed the latters husband.
2. Two crimes were filed against him, one for Reckless Imprudence Resulting in Slight Physical
Injuries Evangeline (Case 1) and Reckless Imprudence Resulting in Homicide and Damage to
Property husband and car (Case 2)

MTC Proceeding:
1. Ivler pleaded guilty for case 1. The MTC then convicted him as charged. He was meted the
penalty of public censure.
2. He then moved to quash case 2. According to him, he cannot be prosecuted anymore; else it will
amount to double jeopardy.
3. MTC refused, finding no identity of offenses. Ivler went to the RTC via petition for certiorari.
4. While the certiorari was pending in the RTC, the MTC proceeded with the arraignment. Accused
was not present, so a warrant of arrest was issued against him.

RTC Proceeding:
1. Because of the warrant of arrest issued by the MTC for failure of Ivler to be present in the
arraignment, RTC dismissed the certiorari case.
2. Ivler then went to SC, again, via petition for certiorari.

Issue:
1. Whether or not his plea of guilt in Case 1 bars the prosecution of Case 2. Or in theory, is reckless
imprudence with slight physical injuries the same as reckless imprudence resulting to homicide?

Ruling:

Petitioners conviction in case 1 bars his prosecution for case 2. Case 2 is dismissed for double jeopardy.

Note please read the full decision of the SC. It discussed the history and background of the doctrine in
this case. It cited and quoted several decisions dating from the 1900s till present in order to justify its
decision.

Reckless Imprudence Bars Subsequent Prosecution for the Same Quasi-Offense because
Reckless Imprudence or Negligence is the crime itself.

Reckless imprudence or negligence is the crime itself. Hence, once committed or acquitted of a
specific act of reckless imprudence, the accused may not be prosecuted again for that same act. For
the essence of the quasi offense of criminal negligence under Art 365 of the RPC lies in the
execution of an imprudent or negligent act that if intentionally done, would be punishable as a felony.
The law penalizes thus the negligent or careless act, not the result thereof. The gravity of the
consequence is only taken into account to determine the penalty; it does not qualify the substance
of the offense. And, as the careless act is single, whether the injurious result should affect one
person or several persons, the offense (criminal negligence) remains one and the same, and
cannot be split into different crimes and prosecutions.