Janelle: Ramgen also beat me up
A violent man with a quick temper who at times used his fists to express his displeasure toward his siblings and even his live-in partner of five years.
This was the unflattering portrait Janelle Manahan painted on Tuesday of actor Ramgen Bautista as she took the witness stand for the first time at the ongoing murder trial in the Parañaque Regional Trial Court Branch 274.
Manahan and Bautista had been together for five years until the eldest of nine children of former Sen. Ramon Revilla Sr. with ex-actress Genelyn Magsaysay was killed by a masked armed man in the family’s house at BF Homes Parañaque on Oct. 28. The still unidentified assailant also shot and wounded Manahan.
At the continuation of the hearing on the bail petition filed by Bautista’s younger brother, Ramon Joseph, or RJ, who is accused of conspiring with sister Ramona to kill the actor over a conflict over money, a teary-eyed Manahan told Judge Fortunito Madrona that the siblings had been “having problems” in the years before Bautista’s death.
“They were fighting. [Ramgen and I] weren’t talking to them. No one was talking to us. We didn’t even go to [Ramgen’s sister] Gail’s wedding,” she said.
According to her, another cause of friction among the siblings was the actor’s “anger management problem” and tendency to get violent. “He was strict. Whenever rules were broken, he got mad. Whenever [the younger siblings] tried to reason out, he would get more mad. He would get physical,” Manahan said.
She recalled an incident in 2009 during which Bautista hit Ramona on the head with a gun and punched Gail. Pressed by her lawyer to say who else among the siblings had physical confrontations with the actor, Manahan named RJ, Ramram and Julius.
“The only sibling he wasn’t able to hit was Ramlyn, [the youngest],” she said as she added, “He had no right to hit them like that.”
At one point in her testimony, she admitted that in 2009, she was at the receiving end of his volatile temper.
Manahan did not give further details but her lawyer Resty Mendoza explained in an interview that she had admitted that she and the actor broke up in August last year, just weeks before his death.
The reason: He beat her up severely during an argument, leaving her black and blue and her face full of contusions.
“She was going to file a case against Ramgen. She even had medico-legal records. She showed me pictures of her swollen face because that’s where Ramgen would hit her. She was only convinced by Genelyn not to push through with it,” he added.
Mendoza also said that Bautista never sought help in trying to control his temper. “When Janelle said he was trying to get better, that’s just a battered person trying to [cover up] for a loved one. It even took us a long time before we got her to admit he was doing these,” Mendoza told the Inquirer.
“[Bautista] wasn’t a saint. He was a really violent man. It wasn’t a question of how often he did it. It would seem he [had been] like that since childhood. He was a disciplinarian and it would seem his siblings lived in fear of him,” he added.
Magsaysay described Manahan’s testimony as false and scripted.
“Whatever she says, it’s not all accurate. As to what they’re saying to establish a motive, even I was hurt by my brother before. I never thought to have him killed. I would tell our dad. And that’s what my children did,” Magsaysay said.
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