The first day of the preliminary investigation on the SUV hit-and-run incident began on Friday, June 17, at the Mandaluyong City Hall of Justice.
The SUV hit-and-run victim, Christian Joseph Floralde, attended the hearing and gave his sworn statement before the Prosecutor’s Office.
Jose Antonio Sanvicente, the suspect and owner of the SUV, was absent during the hearing. His lawyer, Atty. Danny Macalino, attended on his behalf.
Macalino said they have received Floralde’s affidavit.
Sanvicente’s camp is due to submit a counter affidavit on June 23, the day of the second hearing of the preliminary investigation.
Atty. Federico Biolena, Floralde’s lawyer, said he was dismayed at Sanvicente’s absence. However, he said Floralde is adamant to continue pursuing the case.
“Medyo disappointed ako pero may hustiya naman tayo (I was a bit disappointed, but justice will be served),” he said.
Biolena said that he cannot yet discuss talks regarding negotiations between the two camps, saying negotiations with the family will depend on the victim.
“I hope nandito siya para makasumpa siya. He cannot submit his counter affidavit without him being present before the prosecutor’s office (I hope he will attend so he can take his oath),” Biolena said.
On June 5, a dashcam video of an SUV ramming a security guard in Mandaluyong City went viral on social media, resulting in an uproar from citizens and police authorities alike.
At an intersection of Julio Vargas Avenue and St. Francis Street in Mandaluyong City, Sanvicente, riding a white Toyota Rav 4, rammed and ran over Floralde, who was directing traffic in the area.
On June 7, the Mandaluyong City police filed frustrated murder and abandonment of one’s own victim charges against San Vicente at the Mandaluyong City Prosecutor’s Office.
The Land Transportation Office (LTO) have subsequently filed a show cause order against the then unidentified SUV driver.
Obstruction of Justice charges were also filed on June 8 by the Mandaluyong City police against three security personnel of the subdivision, where Sanvicente’s residence was located, for barring the police from entering the driver’s home.
Floralde said on June 10 that he will pursue a case against Sanvicente. By this time, he was already discharged from the VRP Medical Center.
After the Philippine National Police (PNP)’s warnings to Sanvicente, the infamous driver surrendered to the PNP and appeared at a press briefing at Camp Crame in Quezon City.
Accompanied by his lawyer and parents, Sanvicente apologized to Floralde and his family for the incident.
The SUV was turned over to the police.