• Anyone can file charges against a child abuser

    Persida Acosta

    Persida Acosta

    Dear PAO,
    Can a grandmother file charges for violation of Republic Act No. 9262 for her grandchild even if the mother does not want to file charges against the husband, who is the respondent? The mother of the child is not even concerned with the welfare and safety of the latter that she even sided with and believed the lies of her husband.

    Dear Bernard,
    We answer your query in the affirmative. A grandmother can file a complaint for violation of Republic Act (R.A.) No. 9262 otherwise known as the Anti-Violence Against Women and Their Children Act of 2004 even if the mother of the child-victim does not want to file charges against her husband, who is the respondent.

    Section 25 of R.A. No. 9262 states that “violence against women and their children shall be considered a public offense which may be prosecuted upon the filing of a complaint by any citizen having personal knowledge of the circumstances involving the commission of the crime.” Thus, a child’s grandmother who has personal knowledge of the alleged violation of R.A. No. 9262 can initiate the filing of the complaint against the mother’s husband even if the child’s mother does not consent thereto.

    Moreover, it is likewise provided under the law that the victim can avail of protection order/s which can be initiated by persons other than the mother. A protection order is an order issued for the purpose of preventing violence against a woman or her child. This protection order serves the purpose of safeguarding the victim from further harm, minimizing any disruption in facilitating the opportunity and ability of the victim to independently regain control over her life (Section 8, Republic Act No. 9262). Aside from the offended party and his parents/guardian, the following persons may initiate the filing of a protection order: ascendants, descendants or collateral relatives within the fourth civil degree of consanguinity or affinity; officers or social workers of the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) or social workers of local government units (LGUs); police officers, preferably those in charge of women and children’s desks; Punong Barangay or Barangay Kagawad; lawyer, counselor, therapist or healthcare provider of the petitioner; at least two concerned responsible citizens of the city or municipality where the violence against women and their children occurred and who has personal knowledge of the offense committed.

    We hope that we have answered your query. Our legal opinion may vary if other facts are stated or elaborated.

    Editor’s note: Dear PAO is a daily column of the Public Attorney’s Office. Questions for Chief Acosta may be sent to dearpao@manilatimes.net


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    1 Comment

    1. ask ko lng po kung ano po pwede ko ifile na case sa kpit bhay nmin na pinagmumura ung anak ko dahil nsaktan po ung ank nya?