Woman injures partner’s ex-girlfriend

Persida Acosta

Persida Acosta

Dear PAO,
There is a complaint of attempted homicide against me because I fought the former girlfriend of my common-law-husband, who happens to be the father of the former girlfriend’s two children. I only tried to hurt her because she was making faces at me and kept on repeating that I was acting as if I were pretty. She only sustained scratches and bruises in her face. Will I have a chance of winning the case against me even though she started the commotion?

Dear Marisse,
The crime of attempted homicide is committed when the offender commences the commission of homicide or an attempt to kill by direct acts but does not perform all acts of execution which should produce the felony by reason of some cause or accident other than his own spontaneous desistance (Article 6, Revised Penal Code or RPC).

Based on your narration, a criminal complaint can be filed against you for the injuries you have inflicted upon the former girlfriend of your common-law husband. The proper crime to be charge against you will be determined by the Office of the Prosecutor after the submission of complaint/deposition executed under oath by the former girlfriend at the said office. If the investigating prosecutor, after due evaluation of evidence at hand, found probable cause that you had the intention to kill, he will recommend the filing of attempted homicide. On the other hand, the crime of physical injuries shall be recommended for filing if, without intent to kill on your part, injuries were sustained by the former girlfriend.

Jealousy or obfuscation over the former girlfriend will not justify your act or absolve you from being punished for the crime committed, whether an attempt to kill or physical injuries. However, the said feeling may be possibly pleaded as a mitigating circumstance based on Article 13 (6) of the RPC, to wit:

“Article 13. Mitigating Circumstances.–The following are mitigating circumstances:

6. That of having acted upon an impulse so powerful as naturally to have produced passion or obfuscation.”

If the mitigating circumstance is proved during the said hearing and the accused is convicted, the court hearing the case shall impose a penalty that is next lower in degree.

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. Atty. Roslee M. Formoso on

    Complaint for Attempted Homicide should be dismissed for lack of legal basis.
    In this case the events discloses that none of the elements of the crime attempted Homicide are present. Instead what has been committed was Slight Physical Injuries.

    Attempted Homicide is committed when the assailant although he did not have plans to kill the injured party – means no premeditation – “commences the commission of a felony directly or over acts and does not perform all the acts of execution which should produce the felony by reason of some cause or accident other than his spontaneous desistance”. See Revised Penal Code

    The felony contemplated must be one that would result to death or loss of .life. Acts perform must one that will eventually produce death.

    In the case at bar, the offended party suffered scratches and bruises, and these injuries shall never result to loss of life or death.

    What the assailant have committed is Slight Physical Injuries , See Article 266. Section 2.

    Provocations made by the injured although they are not sufficient exonerate the assailant or raise the defense of self defense of her honor, . See Article 13. Mitigating Circumstance.
    However, it can be argued that the verbal derogations of the injured produced passion or obfuscation to the assailant.

    Complaint for Attempted Homicide should be dismissed for lack of legal basis. Injured may file a new complaint for Slight Physical Injuries before the Fiscal.

  2. Atty. Roslee M. Formoso on

    Hi. PAO Acosta,

    Since there was provocation on the part of the injured, such can mitigate and there is not attempted homicide but ONLY Physical Injuries. Even if the assailant shouted threatening words, I would take the provocation as grounds for dismissal of the case. Whether the assailant used excessive force is a matter to be considered but the events can only warrant a case of physical injuries.

  3. Atty. Roslee M. Formoso on

    Hello Ms. Precy Acosta,

    In my opinion, not attempted homicide even if there is manifest intent to kill, it’s Less Serious Physical Injuries or Slight Physical Injuries and Grave Threats.