Pemberton camp not shutting door to raising appeal to CA, SC
OLONGAPO CITY — Convicted United States Marine Lance Cpl. Joseph Scott Pemberton has not been informed about an Olongapo court’s decision dismissing his motion for reconsideration on his homicide conviction for killing transgender Jeffrey “Jennifer” Laude.
Lawyer Rowena Garcia-Flores, Pemberton’s lead counsel, said they have not received a copy of the court’s March 30 ruling but they could still appeal 15 days from the receipt of the court papers.
“As soon as I receive an official copy of the ruling, I will immediately inform him [Pemberton] because he will be the one to decide on what he wants us to do next,” Flores said.
Asked if the detained United States serviceman would elevate his petition to the Court of Appeals or the Supreme Court, Flores replied, “We will see.”
“There were so many things that we have asked from the court. It’s premature to decide what our next move is since we don’t have an official copy of the ruling,” Flores said in a telephone interview.
But Flores said they have prepared for “a long process” before seeing the Laude case elevated to a higher court.
Judge Roline Ginez-Jabalde of Regional Trial Court Branch 74 had affirmed the court’s original decision to convict Pemberton for Laude’s death in 2014.
But Jabalde’s ruling also reduced Pemberton’s jail term from the maximum 12 years to 10 years.
In a statement, lawyer Virgie Lacsa-Suarez, co-counsel of the Laudes, said the denial of Pemberton’s motion for reconsideration and petition for bail was a “bitter-sweet victory for the Laude and the Filipino people.”
“But there is nothing clearer than the court’s findings of fact that Pemberton killed Jennifer Laude. This decision does not deliver complete justice because [Pemberton] continues to enjoy the privilege of serving his sentence in a jail [of which] only the US has control,” Suarez said. SFM
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