Rape Through Sexual Assault; Instrument or Object Rape; Gender-Free Rape; Homosexual Rape

XXX requested his mother to pick up Ricalde at McDonald’s Bel-Air, Sta. Rosa at past 8:00 p.m. Ricalde, then 31 years old, is a distant...

XXX requested his mother to pick up Ricalde at McDonald’s Bel-Air, Sta. Rosa at past 8:00 p.m. Ricalde, then 31 years old, is a distant relative and textmate of XXX, then 10 years old. After dinner, XXX’s mother told Ricalde to spend the night at their house as it was late. He slept on the sofa while XXX slept on the living room floor. It was around 2:00 a.m. when XXX awoke as "he felt pain in his anus and stomach and something inserted in his anus." He saw that Ricalde "fondled his penis." When Ricalde returned to the sofa, XXX ran toward his mother’s room to tell her what happened. He also told his mother that Ricalde played with his sexual organ. XXX’s mother armed herself with a knife for self-defense when she confronted Ricalde about the incident, but he remained silent. She asked him to leave.
XXX’s mother then accompanied XXX to the barangay hall where they were directed to report the incident to the Sta. Rosa police station. The police referred them to the municipal health center for medical examination. Dr. Roy Camarillo examined XXX and found no signs of recent trauma in his anal orifice that was also "NEGATIVE for spermatozoa." XXX and his mother executed their sworn statements leading to the criminal complaint filed against Ricald for rape through sexual assault, as described under the second paragraph of Section 266-A of the Revised Penal Code
Petitioner argues the existence of reasonable doubt in his favor. He contends that XXX did not categorically say that a penis was inserted into his anal orifice, or that he saw a penis or any object being inserted into his anal orifice. XXX was also able to immediately push him away. Thus, no push and pull movement happened that would explain XXX’s alleged stomach ache. Petitioner submits that the alleged stomach ache was an attempt to aggravate the charge against him.


ISSUE:
Is Ricalde guilty for the crime of rape through sexual assault?


RULING:
Ricalde is guilty for the crime of rape through sexual assault. Even men can become victims of rape.


Rape under the second paragraph of Article 266-A is also known as "instrument or object rape," "gender-free rape," or "homosexual rape." The gravamen of rape through sexual assault is "the insertion of the penis into another person’s mouth or anal orifice, or any instrument or object, into another person’s genital or anal orifice."
Jurisprudence holds that "the findings of the trial court, its calibration of the testimonies of the witnesses, and its assessment of the probative weight thereof, as well as its conclusions anchored on said findings are accorded respect if not conclusive effect."
In a long line of cases, this court has given full weight and credit to the testimonies of child victims. Their "youth and immaturity are generally badges of truth and sincerity." XXX, then only 10 years old, had no reason to concoct lies against petitioner. This court has also held that "leeway should be given to witnesses who are minors, especially when they are relating past incidents of abuse."
Petitioner’s reliance on the medico-legal’s finding of no recent trauma in XXX’s anal orifice, or any trace of spermatozoa, lacks merit. The absence of spermatozoa in XXX’s anal orifice does not negate the possibility of an erection and penetration. This result does not contradict the positive testimony of XXX that the lower courts found credible, natural, and consistent with human nature. The gravamen of the crime is the violation of the victim’s dignity. The degree of penetration is not important. Rape is an "assault on human dignity."
G.R. No. 211002, January 21, 2015
RICHARD RICALDE, Petitioner, vs. PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, Respondent.
LEONEN, J.:
The author takes no responsibility for the validity, correctness and result of this work. The information provided is not a legal advice and it should not be used  as a substitute for a competent legal advice from a licensed lawyer. See the disclaimer

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