Latest Stories

Carabuena arraigned for direct assault a year after slapping MMDA traffic enforcer


Screengrab from Youtube.com

MANILA, Philippines — The motorist who was caught on video, a year ago, berating and then slapping a traffic officer of the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) who had flagged him down for a traffic violation, was finally indicted on Thursday, for direct assault, in a Quezon City court.

The arraignment of Robert Blair Carabuena pushed through after Quezon City metropolitan trial court branch 42 Judge Juris Dilinila-Callanta denied a pending request of the defense to postpone the proceedings.

A much slimmer Carabuena pleaded not guilty to the charge of direct assault on an agent of a person in authority while the alleged victim of his attack, MMDA constable Saturnino Fabros, watched intently from the front pew of the court.

Carabuena contested the criminal information, which accused him of attacking Fabros by hitting the MMDA officer several times with his own hat then slapping him on August 11, 2012.

During the arraignment, Carabuena’s lawyer Susana Grace Ojeda immediately asked the court to resolve Carabuena’s request for reconsideration on the charge filed against him and reset the arraignment.

The motion for reconsideration had been filed by the defense after Callanta previously issued an order denying Carabuena’s bid to have the charges against him dropped.

In the nine-page June 18 order, the judge had ruled that the criminal information is sufficient, saying, “Complainant (Fabros) is a traffic constable. The information sufficiently alleges that the accused (Carabuena) knows him to be an agent of a person in authority while the latter was engaged in the actual performance of his duties. At this very early stage of the proceedings, it is of no moment yet whether such knowledge on the part of the accused is true or not. It is a matter of defense which can only be threshed out in full-blown trial on the merits of the case.”

She further stressed that Fabros’ status as a person in authority would be a “matter of defense that can only be determined during trial on the merits.”

During Thursday’s proceedings, Callanta again junked the defense lawyer’s bid for a reconsideration stating that no new argument was raised in the “rehashed” request, which she had already thoroughly discussed in her appealed order.

She likewise took into consideration the prosecution’s remark that the proceedings have already been “delayed for a long period of time” and ordered that the arraignment continue.

Interviewed after the proceedings, a smiling Fabros said that he was glad that Carabuena had already been arraigned. Asked if he still harbored ill feelings against the accused a year after the incident, Fabros replied, “Not so much anymore. But I will still pursue the case against him.”

The direct assault charge against Carabuena stemmed from an August 11, 2012 incident where he allegedly attacked Fabros at the intersection of Capitol Hills Drive and Katipunan Avenue in Old Balara.

The incident was caught on phone video, which went viral on the internet after it was uploaded and was featured on August 14, 2012, in a news and public affairs show aired over TV5.

Follow Us

Follow us on Facebook Follow on Twitter Follow on Twitter

Recent Stories:

Complete stories on our Digital Edition newsstand for tablets, netbooks and mobile phones; 14-issue free trial. About to step out? Get breaking alerts on your mobile.phone. Text ON INQ BREAKING to 4467, for Globe, Smart and Sun subscribers in the Philippines.

Tags: courts , Crime , direct assault , law and justice , News , Robert "Blair" Carabuena , trials and litigation

Copyright © 2014, .
To subscribe to the Philippine Daily Inquirer newspaper in the Philippines, call +63 2 896-6000 for Metro Manila and Metro Cebu or email your subscription request here.
Factual errors? Contact the Philippine Daily Inquirer's day desk. Believe this article violates journalistic ethics? Contact the Inquirer's Reader's Advocate. Or write The Readers' Advocate:
c/o Philippine Daily Inquirer Chino Roces Avenue corner Yague and Mascardo Streets, Makati City, Metro Manila, Philippines Or fax nos. +63 2 8974793 to 94
  1. Henares on Pacquiao bashing: I did not start this
  2. ‘Mom, I love you,’ says text from student on sinking ferry
  3. ‘No real progress in PH if dynasties not dismantled’
  4. Massive infra spending set
  5. More legal woes for Cedric Lee
  6. Kim Henares needs a reprimand, says Cayetano
  7. Passengers denied chance to escape sinking South Korea ferry
  8. South Korea president shouted down by distraught parents
  9. Two Popes who would be saints
  10. Lacson’s wife loses diamond earring to thieves but recovers jewelry quickly with police arrest
  1. Kim Henares needs a reprimand, says Cayetano
  2. Suspect in Vhong Navarro mauling tries to leave PH
  3. More legal woes for Cedric Lee
  4. Fr. Suarez says last Mass on Easter before returning donated land to San Miguel
  5. ‘Mom, I love you,’ says text from student on sinking ferry
  6. MH370 co-pilot made mid-flight phone call – report
  7. ‘No real progress in PH if dynasties not dismantled’
  8. I’ll follow my conscience on Estrada, says JV Ejercito
  9. Massive infra spending set
  10. OFW brings MERS virus to Philippines
  1. KL confirms Malaysian Airlines Flight MH370 ended in Indian Ocean
  2. MRT passengers pass the hat for 6-year-old Ashley
  3. Rookie, lady cops lauded for quick response to MOA heist
  4. Model Helena Belmonte wished ‘to slash her wrist and hope to die’
  5. Malaysia averts another air tragedy; pilot lands troubled plane safely
  6. Revilla says he was joking; Lacson stands by his story
  7. Revilla ‘consulted’ Lacson on how he evaded arrest
  8. Police rule out foul play in Helena Belmonte’s death as boyfriend is ‘traumatized’
  9. Cudia, dismissed for lying, got 99% in conduct
  10. Hammer-wielding robbers cause chaos at Philippines’ Mall of Asia


  • Enrile chief aide back in PH ‘to face charges’–report
  • Pakistan library named ‘bin Laden,’ as memory fades
  • US teacher fired over comment on black president
  • Magnitude-7.5 earthquake shakes Mexican capital
  • Title of new Hillary Clinton book: ‘Hard Choices’
  • Sports

  • Motivated LeBron James preps for postseason
  • Nadal ousted by Ferrer in Monte Carlo quarters
  • Pacquiao shorts in Bradley fight sold for P1.7M in LA auction
  • Ryu pitches Dodgers past Giants
  • Alonso sets the pace in Chinese GP practice
  • Lifestyle

  • Levine designs womenswear with help from fiancee
  • Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Nobel laureate, dies at 87
  • Ford Mustang turns 50 atop Empire State Building
  • Pro visual artists, lensmen to judge Pagcor’s photo contest
  • ‘Labahita a la bacalao’
  • Entertainment

  • Myx TV premieres Asian American ‘docu-series’
  • A nutty finale for ‘Scandal,’ TV’s craziest show
  • EXO postpones release of mini album ‘Overdose’
  • ‘X-men’ filmmaker slams ‘fabricated’ sex attack claims
  • Singer Chris Brown’s bodyguard on trial in DC
  • Business

  • US commerce secretary spells out economic facet of ‘pivot to Asia’
  • Italy sells luxury state cars on eBay
  • Asian shares mostly up in quiet trade
  • Dollar up in Asia on US jobs data, Ukraine deal
  • Barbie doll has a problem
  • Technology

  • Nasa’s moon-orbiting robot crashes down
  • Netizens pay respects to Gabriel Garcia Marquez
  • Nokia recalls 30,000 chargers for Lumia 2520 tablet
  • Facebook rolls out ‘nearby friends’ feature
  • Netizens seethe over Aquino’s ‘sacrifice’ message
  • Opinion

  • Editorial cartoon, April 17, 2014
  • A humbler Church
  • Deepest darkness
  • ‘Agnihotra’ for Earth’s health
  • It’s the Holy Week, time to think of others
  • Global Nation

  • Multicultural flock marks Good Friday in San Francisco
  • Las Vegas ‘Pinoy Pride’ fest hails Filipino heritage
  • Marking Jesus’ journey on Good Friday
  • Filipina accomplice arrested for fake bills in Malaysia
  • DoH denies Filipino nurse no longer positive for MERS virus
  • Marketplace