No charges yet vs. hazing suspects

The Tantangan police station, which handles the case, tried to file the charges against the 15 suspects last June 27 but government prosecutors deferred the filing of the case to the court reportedly due to the lack of some vital requirements.

She said this forced the Tantangan police to release fraternity member Daryl Marcos from its custody the next day.

Under Republic Act 8049, an act regulating hazing and other forms of initiation rites in fraternities, sororities and organizations (or the anti-hazing law), the penalty of reclusion perpetual or life imprisonment is meted out on those responsible for cases of death due to hazing.

The 19-year-old Doctora, an information technology student at the Notre Dame of Marbel University here, allegedly died during the initiation rites of the Tau Gamma Phi Fraternity NDMU chapter that was held at a farm in barangay Tinongcop in Tantangan, South Cotabato.

Senior Insp. Roberto Callejo, Tantangan police chief, said Doctora was already dead when brought to the South Cotabato Provincial Hospital early last June 24 reportedly due to internal bleeding because of the severe beating.

He said Marcos, who brought Doctora to the hospital, claimed the latter suddenly collapsed while resting after undergoing the group’s initiation rites.

Callejo said the 18-year-old Marcos admitted to have participated in the beating of Doctora and named at least 14 other members of the group as directly involved in the incident.

But the elder Doctora reiterated that they would pursue the charges against all those involved in the fatal hazing of her grandson, who grew up under her care as both his parents were working abroad.

"We will weigh all our options when his father and mother arrives this weekend. But my son (Mark John's father) already made a vow to exert all the necessary efforts to give justice to Mark John's death," she said.

She said Mark John's father Roberto is still in Saudi Arabia while his mother Mary Ann is now in Manila. Both are reportedly scheduled to arrive here on Sunday (July 9).

Meantime, Doctora said the parents of some of the suspects had been frequenting her over the last several days to ask forgiveness and to give the suspects the chance to reform by waiving any charges against them.

"I told them that I can't just forget and forgive them for what they did. And besides, they're asking for something that would only benefit themselves," she added.