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TitleEvidence Final Digest
TagsBurden Of Proof (Law) Reasonable Doubt Evidence Witness Testimony
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Total Pages39
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Page 20

MIFAÑA, DIVINE GRACE M. Evidence 20

because of compulsion from the crowd. Appellant further insists that his alibi
should be given due consideration since the prosecution failed to overturn his
alibi which was duly corroborated by the testimony of his father.

Issue:

Whether or not the witnesses presented are credible.

Held:

Yes. In this case, the trial court gave full faith and credence to the testimonies of
the prosecution witnesses. The Court finds no reason to disturb this finding. As
consistently held by the Court, the trial judge's evaluation of the testimony of a
witness is generally accorded not only the highest respect, but also finality,
unless some weighty circumstance has been ignored or misunderstood but which
could change the result. Having had the direct opportunity to observe the witness
on the stand, the trial judge was in a vantage position to assess his demeanor,
and determine if he was telling the truth or not.

The alleged inconsistency in the testimony of Allarey as to whether appellant
immediately reported to him after being summoned, and in the testimony of Merle
that appellant was "tulala" at the time he admitted responsibility for the crime,
merely refer to minor details which do not in actuality touch upon the "whys" and
"wherefores" of the crime committed. Inconsistencies in the testimony of
witnesses when referring only to minor details and collateral matters do not affect
the substance of their declaration, their veracity, or the weight of their testimony.
Although there may be inconsistencies on minor details, the same do not impair
the credibility of the witnesses where there is consistency in relating the principal
occurrence and positive identification of the assailants. In fact, some minor
inconsistencies could show that the witness was not previously coached so as to
tailor his testimony, and thus they serve as badges of credibility.

More importantly, the declaration of appellant acknowledging his guilt of the
offense may be given in evidence against him under Section 33 of Rule 130 of
the Revised Rules of Court. Note that his extrajudicial confession is corroborated
by the corpus delicti as required by Section 3 of Rule 133. The Rules do not
require that all the elements of the crime must be clearly established by evidence
independent of the confession. Corpus delicti only means that there should be
some concrete evidence tending to show the commission of the crime apart from
the confession. In this case, the fact of the crime was sufficiently proven through
the testimonies by witnesses such as Myra Pines, who heard the cries of the
victim, and the other members of the search party who found the body of the
victim, and witnessed the confession of the appellant, as well as documentary
evidence presented during trial such as the medico-legal certificate attesting that
the victim had been raped and killed.

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