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Dacera died a natural death, claim four men accused in rape-slay case
Rommel Galido, John Pascual dela Serna III, Valentine Rosales and Clark Rapinan, accompanied by their lawyer Mike Santiago, faced reporters late yesterday as the public continued speculating about the claim by police that the men who were with Dacera at a New Year’s Eve party at the City Garden Grand Hotel in Makati City raped her.
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Dacera died a natural death, claim four men accused in rape-slay case

Ghio Ong (The Philippine Star) - January 8, 2021 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — Four of the 11 men accused in the alleged rape and death of flight attendant Christine Dacera maintained that there was no foul play in her death.

Rommel Galido, John Pascual dela Serna III, Valentine Rosales and Clark Rapinan, accompanied by their lawyer Mike Santiago, faced reporters late yesterday as the public continued speculating about the claim by police that the men who were with Dacera at a New Year’s Eve party at the City Garden Grand Hotel in Makati City raped her.

They all asserted that Dacera might have indeed died due to natural causes, particularly aneurysm as declared in the medico-legal report, probably due to too much alcohol.

Rosales, who was invited to the party, said he arrived late and saw Dacera and her roommates at Room 2209 – including Galido, Dela Serna and Rapinan – already intoxicated.

“She was holding a wine glass, while the others were already tipsy,” he said.

Galido, Dacera’s fellow flight attendant and a close friend, recalled that there were bottles of tequila (Cuervo), whisky (Jim Beam, Johnny Walker), vodka and softdrinks during the party.

They later transferred to Room 2207 upon invitation of their common friend Edward Madrid, who was included in the criminal case, to meet his friends and play games, wherein Dacera won.

Some of those in Dacera’s group, including Galido, switched between rooms 2209 and 2207. At one point, Dacera invited Galido to go to Room 2207 “to check if there were straight guys there.” They maintained that the occupants of the rooms were all gay men.

Dacera later told Galido she was feeling strange and that she thought “someone put something in my drink.”

She reportedly alleged that Mark Anthony Rosales, one of the 11 in the case, was the one who laced her drink with that “something,” which Galido brushed aside.

Around 5 a.m. on New Year’s Day, Rosales recalled being told by occupants of Room 2207 that Dacera was throwing up in their washroom.

An hour later, Rapinan said he saw Dacera kneeling in front of the toilet bowl and vomiting, and gave her a bath robe.

At 8 a.m., Dacera tried to vomit in front of the bathtub, Rapinan said. He said he urged Dacera to go to her bed but she refused, insisting she would stay by the bathtub.

Later, Galido saw Dacera sleeping in the bathtub, and put a blanket over her.

At 12 noon, Galido checked on Dacera, and panicked when he saw that her lips and fingers had turned blue. Checking, he found out that she was no longer breathing and had no pulse.

Rapinan and co-accused Gregorio de Guzman took turns in giving cardiopulmonary resuscitation to Dacera, but failed to revive her.

They later decided to call for help from the hotel management, who gave them a wheelchair with no leg support as Rosales recalled. The hotel staff brought her to the basement, where they waited for an ambulance as they continued trying to revive her.

Valentine Rosales believes the bruises found on Dacera came from her unsteady position in the wheelchair.

Dacera was brought to the Makati Medical Center, where she was declared dead.

Dela Serna, Galido, Rapinan and  Valentine Rosales were one in asserting that Dacera died of natural causes.

“Walang nangyaring foul play kasi mahal na mahal namin si Christine,” Dela Serna  maintained.

Rosales insisted that they could not be blamed for Dacera’s death.

“The last moments of Christine was sa room namin (2209) sa bathtub. For sure lahat kami inalagaan siya dahil suka na siya nang suka,” he said.

Rapinan, breaking into tears, asserted that no one raped and killed Dacera.

“Walang may kayang gumawa ng pambababoy kay Christine… Hindi namin kayang gawin iyon sa kaniya kasi mahal na mahal namin siya,” he said, sobbing.

Santiago assured the public that his clients would “cooperate in the upcoming preliminary investigation with the city prosecutor” on Jan. 13.

He said his clients would not issue any statement “to police or any investigating authority,” and that they “will not come upon just a simple invitation by the police, and should there be any invitation it should be coursed to us their lawyers.”

The Makati City police filed charges of rape and homicide against 11 men, including Rapinan, Valentine and Mark Anthony Rosales, Galido, dela Serna, de Guzman and Madrid. The city prosecutor later ordered the release of Galido, Dela Serna and co-accused John Paul Halili from police detention for lack of evidence.

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