“One out of four people is or will become a victim of domestic violence,” Lt. Randy Caturay, member of the San Francisco Police Force and the Alliance for Community Empowerment, recently told the audience at the Philippine Consulate in San Francisco.
The California Supreme Court rejected an appeal March 19 the case of People v. Beltran, by a man convicted of murdering his former girlfriend, Filipino American single mother Claire Grace Tempongko.
A free legal clinic for survivors of domestic violence or sexual assault will be held on March 1 from 12 to 1:30 p.m. at Louis B. Meyer Lounge, Hastings College of the Law on 198 McAllister St. , First Floor (at Hyde).
By Vivian Zalvidea Araullo
A flash mob of hundred people danced in front of City Hall on Valentine’s Day as part of the global campaign to end violence against women and girls.
By Bert Eljera
They gathered at her old workplace and spoke tenderly of her, how funny she could be sometimes.
SAN FRANCISCO—California’s Supreme Court on June 3 reinstated the murder conviction of a man who stabbed to death his former girlfriend, a Filipino American single mother, in front of her two children.
A state appeals court in 2011 had overturned Tari Ramirez Beltran’s second-degree murder conviction for the stabbing death of Claire Tempongko, 28, ruling that the lower court judge at his trial incorrectly instructed jurors on the legal standard for a lesser verdict of manslaughter.
As a result of the second-degree murder conviction, Ramirez was sentenced to 26 years to life in prison for killing Tempongko in October 2000. In his testimony he said that he became enraged when she told him that she had been pregnant with his child and had an abortion.
But after the conviction, the First District Court of Appeal in San Francisco ruled that Ramirez was entitled to a new trial, agreeing with his defense lawyer that his trial judge gave the jury wrong instructions for determining a verdict of manslaughter.
Trial court Judge Robert Dondero had told jurors to compare Ramirez’s conduct with how an average person would have acted under similar circumstances. Ramirez’s defense argued on appeal that the instruction deviated from California’s prevailing definition that emphasized mental state rather than conduct in finding a verdict of manslaughter.
But the state Supreme Court’s unanimous June 3 ruling stated that Dondero’s jury instruction was correct. Therefore, Ramirez’s conviction for second-degree murder was reinstated.
By Harvey I. Barkin
Should the killer of Claire Joyce Tempongko have been convicted of manslaughter and given a less severe sentence instead of murder, which carries a heavier penalty, because a lower court allegedly erred in instructing the jury on the distinction between murder and manslaughter?
Autographed boxing gloves of Manny Pacquiao and two basketballs bearing the signature of Miami Heat’s Filipino-American coach, Erik Spoelstra, raised funds in an auction on Nov. 26 that US Ambassador to the Philippines Harry K. Thomas Jr. sponsored for a Baguio group fighting domestic violence.
The Filipino-Canadian community in Winnipeg held a vigil last Saturday remembering the Filipino victims of a murder-suicide and to raise awareness about domestic violence.
By Susan K
Vicky’s story began like those of many wives whose husbands leave to seek jobs overseas—full of hope for a better future. “I used to hear bells ringing in my ears every time I heard the name of the place—Jeddah, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. I can’t explain the joy I felt every time I received a letter. I felt hope, love, longings, kisses, and hugs were enclosed in those envelopes from my beloved husband… and they came one after the other,” she recalled.