Decision on Dumpit’s case

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Tuesday, August 5, 2014


CONTROVERSIAL policeman, SPO1 Adonis Dumpit, was originally charged with murder for killing a robbery suspect, who was a minor, almost ten years ago. But the court found him guilty only of homicide in the promulgation held yesterday.

Regional Trial Court (RTC) Judge Ester Veloso, in her 27-page decision, sentenced Dumpit to a minimum six years and a maximum nine years and four months imprisonment and ordered him to pay P50,000 as indemnity fee to the family of the victim, Ronron Go.

Go was 17 years old when he was shot dead by Dumpit on Dec. 14, 2004 during a hot pursuit operation. Go and a companion had just held up a passenger jeepney at the back of the White Gold House and ran towards the interior portion of Villagonzalo in barangay Tejero. One of the victims, Kimberly Corro, sought the help of Dumpit, who lived nearby.

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Dumpit chased Go, who was armed. When cornered, Go attempted to fire first. But Dumpit, a sharpshooter, was quick to the draw. Go was declared dead on arrival at the hospital.

It took several years before the Deputy Ombudsman for Military Affairs could resolve its preliminary investigation of the case. Dumpit continued to serve as law enforcer while the case was at the Ombudsman's level.

When it reached the court and a warrant of arrest was issued, Dumpit went into hiding but later surrendered. He was detained for a while at a Criminal Investigation and Detective Group (CIDG) 7 cell but was later transferred to the city jail. He was denied bail.

Ben Militar, one of Dumpit's lawyers, claimed in an interview on my program over dySS Super Radyo yesterday that Judge Veloso’s decision was fair enough. In fact, he said it was a partial victory on the part of Dumpit. He was referring to the downgrading of the offense to homicide.

Veloso. Militar added, took note of their argument that Dumpit’s act was in line with his duty as a police officer. It was a call of duty.

Judge Veloso, in her decision, explained why Dumpit should be convicted only of homicide and not of murder. Part of the decision said:

“Considering that the accused admitted shooting and killing the victim, what remains for the court to resolve is whether the killing was attended by treachery and superior strength as alleged by the prosecution in the information and whether it was in the performance of the functions of a police officer and/or self-defense as alleged by the accused.

“Article 14 (16) of the Revised Penal Code states that there is treachery (Alevosia) when the offender commits any of the crimes against the person, employing means, methods or forms in the execution thereof which tend directly to insure its execution without risk to himself arising from the defense which the offended party might make.

Article 14 (15) of the Revised Penal Code further cites as an aggravating circumstance that advantage be taken of superior strength or means be enployed to weaken the defenses.”

Another part of the decision reads:

“Settled is the rule that such circumstances is present whenever there is inequality of forces between the victim and the aggressor, superior strength is advantageous for the aggressor and the latter takes advantage of it in the commission of the crime. No evidence, whether directly or circumstantial, was presented to establish that there had been inequality of strength between the accused and the victim or that the former had purposely or consciously taken advantage of superior strength in committing the crime.

“The series of events further negates the presence of treachery in the killing of the victim. To establish treachery, two elements must occur: (a) that at the then time of the attack, the victim as not in the position to defend himself; and (b), that the offender consciously adopted the particular means of attack employed.”

Anyway, Dumpit's lawyers will file a motion for reconsideration and they are hoping that the judge will consider their new arguments. Dumpit can now post bail pending the resolution of his motion for reconsideration because homicide is bailable. And he can go back to the service because his administrative case was dismissed by the Napolcom.

(bobby.nalzaro@yahoo.com)

Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on August 06, 2014.

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