Runway robber jailed for 8 years
posted 10-Jul-2019  ·  
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A resident of San Isidro Village, Virac has been sentenced to spend as long as 8 years in jail for robbing at knifepoint a woman and her boyfriend at the airport runway’s far end in February 2018.

The Regional Trial Court found Dennis Tirrado Cajuday, 27, guilty of the crime beyond reasonable doubt and ordered him to suffer imprisonment from two years and four months as minimum to eight years as maximum.

He was also directed to pay the victim, Zaira Emmanuel Tabuena, a resident of Baguio City, the amount of P42,900 as actual damages.

According to the testimony of the victim, who was 18 at the time, she was with her boyfriend, Erl Justin Tabios, also 18, to meet with their friends at the end of the airport runway in Cavinitan at 5:30 P.M. of Feb. 26, 2018.

The duo, both senior high school students then, crossed to the other side of the runway, facing Imperial Homes Subdivision in San Isidro Village, and sat on the pavement.

At 6:30 P.M. with no friends in sight, they noticed that a man was already standing beside them, initially mistaking him for a beggar. They then noticed that he was wearing a brown hooded jacket and khaki shorts while his face was half-covered with a dirty white handkerchief, with only his eyes and nose exposed.

The man then pointed a knife at Zaira and declared a hold-up, saying, “Cellphone, cellphone!”

Saying “dai po, dai tabi, dai…,” the two teeners tried to run away but the suspect got hold of her jacket wrapped around her arm, causing her wallet and Iphone 6S to fall on the pavement.

She tried to pick it up but the man poked the knife at her as he took the valuables. Her boyfriend tried to call for help but the man threw a stone at him that the boy parried with his arm.

The robber then escaped towards a forested area of the subdivision, taking with him the wallet containing P2,000, the Nike jacket and the P40,000 Apple cellphone.

At the police station, the victims were shown pictures of suspects with robbery cases and identified one of them as the one responsible for the runway robbery.

They accompanied the police to the subdivision where they came upon a small house and identified the man playing with a cellphone outside it was the one who robbed Zaira.

The police brought Cajuday to the station where the victims, who had not yet come face to face with the suspect, heard his voice and identified it as the same voice who declared a holdup and demanded the cellphone.

In his defense, Cajuday denied the allegation and claimed he was in their house at the time together with his parents, siblings, and relatives. However, he admitted that he was convicted of carnapping and was allowed to undergo probation.

During questioning, he affirmed that he went home from work at 4:50 P.M. that day and he could reach the airport runway without any difficulty as it was just 100 meters away from his house.

Noting that it was not physically impossible for him to be at the runway at the time of the robbery, then RTC Branch 42 Acting Presiding Judge Lelu P. Contreras said Cajuday’s denial crumbled in the face of the positive identification by both Tabuena and Tabios.

In a separate decision RTC Branch 42 Presiding Judge Genie G. Gapas-Agbada approved a plea bargaining agreement that allowed a suspected robber to plead guilty to the lesser charge of theft.

Jayson Sorreda Manoguid, 26, also known as “Elago,” was sentenced to suffer the straight penalty of six months of imprisonment.

Manoguid had been accused of robbery for allegedly breaking into the house of Hector Adille in San Isidro Village, Virac sometime between 1 to 2 A.M. of Nov. 9, 2018 and then carrying away 7 cellphones, a laptop, an Apple iPad, a black bag, a pair of earrings and cash of P35,000, for a total loot of over P120,000.

As the suspect was fleeing and was about to jump over the fence, Adille managed to shine his flashlight on him and was able to see his face.

At the police station, the victim’s brother, SPO1 Ruel Adille, showed him several pictures of notorious robbers in Virac, with Hector positively identifying Manoguid as the culprit.

During the pre-trial conference, both parties moved for the approval of the plea bargaining agreement, which the Court found to be not contrary to laws, morals, good customs, public order and public policy.

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