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People vs. Genosa


January 15, 2004
Ponente: Panganiban, J.
Facts:
Version of the Prosecution:
Marivic and Ben Genosa were united in marriage in Ormoc City Leyte. At first, they lived with the parents
of Ben but after sometime, they were able to rent a house from a certain Steban Matiga and thats where
they lived with their two children.
One evening, Ben and Arturo Basobas went to a cockfight where they had 2 bottles of beer before
heading home. When Ben got home, he found out that his wife has gone out to look for him. Arturo on
the other hand, did not see appellant arrive but on his way home, when he passed by the Genosas
house he heard her say: I will not hesitate to kill you.... and that was the last time Arturo saw Ben alive
and he also noticed that from then on, their rented house appeared uninhabited and always closed.
Three days later, the neighbors of Steban Matiga told him about the foul odor emanating from his house
being rented by the Genosas. When he was able to enter the house, he saw the lifeless body of Ben
lying on his side on the bed covered with blanket, he was only in his underwear with injuries at the back of
his head. The policemen found a metal pipe near the area where Ben was found dead and according to
the post-mortem examination, he had been dead for two to three days since his body was already
decomposing.
Appellant Marivic Genosa admitted having killed his husband. She testified that on the night of the killing,
she got worried that her husband may have gone gambling since it was payday. With her cousin Ecel
Arano, they looked for Ben at the marketplace but did not find him. When they got home, they found Ben
drunk. Ben nagged appellant for following him but she ignored him and instead attended to their children.
Ben got disappointed so he switched off the light and cut the television antenna to keep her from
watching. When she saw Ben about to attack her, she ran to the bedroom but Ben got hold of her so she
fell on the side of the bed and screamed for help. Ben left and while he was not around, the appellant
packed his clothes since she wanted him to leave. When Ben got back, he was enraged to find his
clothes packed and so he dragged appellant holding her by her neck. Appellant testified that she knew
that there was a gun in their drawer but Ben didnt have the key so he got blade cutter instead but she
was able to smash his arm so he dropped the blade; then she smashed him at his nape with the pipe
when he was about to pick up the blade. She however testified that she ended the life of her husband by
shooting him.
Version of the Defense
Marivic testified that after the first year of their marriage, Ben became cruel to her and was a habitual
drinker. She said he provoked her, he would slap her and sometimes pin her down on the bed and beat
her. These incidents happened several times and she would often run home to her parents but Ben
would follow her and seek her out promising to change and would ask for forgiveness.
Marivic said she did not provoke her husband when she got home that night, it was her husband who
began the provocation. After running towards the room, she was afraid that her husband would hurt her
and she wanted to make sure she would deliver her baby safely so she shot him.
RTC of Ormoc Leyte: found Marivic Genosa guilty of Parricide; case was elevated to the CA upon
automatic review

Appellants counsel filed an URGENT OMNIBUS MOTION praying that the Court allow:
1. The exhumation of Ben Genosa and re-examination of his cause of death
2. The examination of Marivic Genosa by qualified psychologists and psychiatrists to determine her
state of mind at the time of the killing
3. Partial re-opening of the case to take the testimony of said psychologists and psychiatrists
*attached was a letter of Dr. Fortun, the only qualified forensic pathologist in the country stating that the wound was
more likely to be a gunshot wound than a beating with a pipe.

The Court partly granted the motion and remanded the case to the trial court for the reception of expert
psychological opinion on the Battered Woman Syndrome plea. The experts Dr. Dayan and Dr. Pajarillo
conducted several sessions with Marivic and stated that she was indeed a battered woman.
Alleged Errors assigned by appellant:
1. Courts hasty decision
2. Finding as a fact that the couple was legally married
3. Cause of death with a pipe
4. Conclusion that Ben Genosa was a battered husband
5. Not requiring testimony from their children
6. Marivics flight to manila was only to save the life of her unborn child
7. There was treachery
8. Refusal of the court to re-evaluate the elements in determining the existence of self-defense

Issues:
1. WON appellant acted in self defense and defense of her fetus
2. WON there was treachery in the killing of Ben Genosa
Held:
st
1 Issue:
When the accused admits killing the victim, it is incumbent upon her to prove any claimed justifying
circumstance by clear and convincing evidence because it shifts the burden of proof from the prosecution
to the defense.
Battered Woman
-a woman who is repeatedly subjected to any forceful physical or psychological behaviour by a man in
order to coerce her to do something he wants her to do without concern for her rights
-the couple must go through the battering cycle at least TWICE
Battered Woman Syndrome
1. Tension-building phase
-minor battering occurs
2. Acute battering incident
-characterized by brutality and destructiveness
3. Tranquil, loving phase
-the batterer shows tender and nurturing behaviour and the battered woman tries to convince
herself that the battery will never happen again
***The defense fell short of proving all three phases of the cycle of violence, although there were acute
battering incidents, but that does not in itself prove the existence of the syndrome. She has failed to
prove that in at least another battering episode in the past, she had gone through a similar pattern.
There was no unlawful aggression because there was sufficient time interval between the aggression and
her fatal attack upon him, he was no longer in a position that presented actual threat on her life or safety.

However, the examinations made by the experts proved that the battery resulted in diminution of her
freedom of action intelligence or intent and should be considered as a mitigating factor.
There is another mitigating factor which is passion and obfuscation.
nd

2 Issue:
There is treachery when one commits any of the crimes against persons by employing means, methods
or forms in the execution thereof without the risk to oneself arising from the defense that the offended
party might make.
The testimony is insufficient to establish the presence of treachery and when a killing is preceded by an
argument or a quarrel, treachery cannot be appreciated as a qualifying circumstance because the
decease may be said to have been forewarned and to have anticipated aggression from the assailant.
Judgment AFFIRMED but REDUCED penalty the penalty should be reduced by one degree (6 yrs and
one day to 14 years, 8 months and 1 day)
Summary on the BWS:
1. Each of the phases of the cycle of violence must be proven to have characterized at least two
battering episodes
2. The final acute battering episode preceding the killing of the batterer MUST HAVE PRODUCED
in the battered persons mind an ACTUAL FEAR of an imminent harm from her batterer and an
honest belief that she needed to use force in order to save her life.
3. At the time of the killing, the batterer must have posed immediate and actual grave harm to the
accused based on the history of violence perpetrated.
Ynares-Santiago, Davide, Sandoval, Austria J: Dissenting Opinion
-there was indeed the presence of the battered woman syndrome because of the comprehensive and
extensive discussion of the different phases that the appellant has suffered due to the several battering
incidents and also the examinations and opinions given by the two experts Dr. Dayan and Dr. Pajarillo