The disappearance of Zosimae. Nine-year-old Zosimae Magluyan went missing on Christmas morning in 2012.
It was Christmas morning of 2012 and the Magluyan family had just woken up from an evening of celebration at their home in Barangay San Lorenzo Ruiz Dos, Dasmariñas, Cavite.
Jemalyn was preparing to leave for General Trias, Cavite to run some errands. She asked her mother to look after her nine-year-old daughter, Zosimae.
Jemalyn came back home at around 1:00 p.m. and naturally, looked for her daughter. However, her family could gave her different answers when she asked where Zosimae was.
Jemalyn's sister said Zosimae went to the market with their brother. But when their brother arrived, he said the little girl might have gone outside with their mother. However, when their mother came home, Zosimae was not with her.
Anxious, Jemalyn filed a report at the barangay office. They searched for Zosimae in the nearby villages. They also posted “Missing” posters with Zosimae’s photo.
Days passed and they did not find Zosimae. Despite this, Jemalyn never lost hope.
"Hindi na ako makatulog. Sabi ko, nasaan ka na ba talaga?” Jemalyn said. "Naghahanap pa rin talaga kami baka isang araw makita na lang namin siya, napasama na lang sa nanlilimos na mga bata."
On the 11th day of Zosimae's disappearance, Leonard Lazarra, was going through a mound of garbage under a shed by the river with his friend when they noticed something peculiar.
"Sabi ko, baboy lang ‘yan na ibinaon diyan. Siguro nasira. Sabi ng kasama ko, hindi, tao 'yan, may damit. Palapit pa lang ako, naaamoy ko ng mabaho talaga eh,” Leonard, a resident of Barangay San Lorenzo Ruiz Dos, recalled.
"Hindi talaga siya maniwala kaya inangat niya 'yung damit. 'Yun pagkaangat, nakita na namin, tao nga."
The shed was just a stone's throw from the home of the Magluyans, within hearing distance of anyone in the house.
Jemalyn heard the two talking, and fear gripped her.
"Pagkarinig ko pong ganun, gusto ko sana silang tawagin pero natigilan po ako," Jemalyn said.
"Tapos nagtayuan 'yung balahibo ko. Diyos ko, sabi ko, si Zosimae na nga siguro 'yun."
Jemalyn eventually forced herself to go to the shed where the two boys where talking. When she saw the body, her worst nightmares were confirmed.
"Nakita ko po agad 'yung tsinelas niya. Pagdampot ko ng tsinelas, siya po talaga, sabi ko. Si Zosimae,” she said.
Upon seeing the body’s condition, Jemalyn could only imagine what her daughter suffered.
Zosimae's body showed signs of sexual abuse, and was deteriorating from its time in the garbage pile and exposure to animals such as rodents.
The Dasmariñas Police and a team from the Cavite Scene of Crime Operations responded to the crime scene.
"Nakita namin ang hubad na katawan ng bata doon at nakita ko rin personally na sa palagay ko, mayroong signs of rape," said Police Senior Inspector Fermel dela Cruz, chief investigator of the Dasmariñas PNP Investigation Section.
“Nasa stage of decomposition na rin [‘yung katawan].”
Based on post-mortem examination, nine-year-old Zosimae died due to traumatic injuries. But they could not fully determine at that time if the victim was sexually assaulted because her body was already in an advanced state of decomposition.
The crime scene. The body of nine-year-old Zosimae Magluyan was found under a mound of garbage in a shed near their home in Dasmariñas, Cavite.
Jemalyn could not think of anyone who would attack her daughter.
To try to find the suspects, the authorities evaluated all the circumstances of the case.
"Araw ng Pasko, 'yung mga bata talagang namamasko 'yan sa iba't ibang lugar. Sa sitwasyon na iyon, merong mga nag-iinuman malapit doon sa bahay," Dela Cruz said.
"Lahat ng mga possible suspect o 'yung mga pwede talagang i-link natin dun sa nangyaring insidente ay ipinatawag natin dito sa police station."
Eight men were invited for questioning. But all of them denied knowing anything about the crime.
As the investigation ensued, a witness eventually surfaced. He was one of the men previously invited for questioning.
"Diyan po kami nag-iinuman sa may bahay po. Napansin ko si Rodel Cubian na may kasamang bata. Pababa po [sila],” Reysan Guillarte said.
“Kilala ko po 'yung bata, si Zosimae Magluyan po. Wala pong malay. Kinabahan po ako nun. Kasi nakita po nila ako, pinagbantaan po ang buhay ko at ang pamilya ko, papatayin po nila ako.”
Guillarte kept quiet until, 11 days later, he heard the news about Zosimae. He identified the suspects as Rodel Cubian, 23 years old; Jayson Cubian, 20 years old; Ryan Delequeña, 25 years old; and a 15-year-old, "Paul" (not his real name).
On November 9, 2012, Rodel Cubian's mother went to the authorities to surrender the suspects.
The four suspects admitted to raping Zosimae, who they kept captive for several days.
"Pinag-usapan po namin na galawin 'yung bata," Cubian said. "Tinawag po namin sa baba. Binaba po namin sa ilog."
The suspects said they assaulted the child repeatedly while she was captive, until the day they found her dead.
"Pagbalik ko, nakita ko 'yung bata, patay na po,” Cubian said.
The suspects. The four suspects with were initially charged with rape with homicide.
"Pero dahil sa ginawang preliminary investigation, naitaas ito dun sa kidnapping with homicide," Dela Cruz said.
"Bakit kamo naging kidnapping with homicide? Hinahanap ng Office of the City Prosecutor dito ay 'yung report na galing doon sa SOCO. Katunayan na 'yung bata ay nagahasa. Pero dahil nga nasa stage of partial decomposition na, walang makita na genital injuries due to the decomposed state of the cadaver."
Three of the accused were temporarily detained at the Dasmariñas lock cell. "Paul" meanwhile, was brought to the City Social Worker and Development Office in Dasmariñas, Cavite.
While the suspects were apprehended, Jemalyn and her family had only begun their journey towards healing.
"Zosimae, sabi ko nga, saan ka man naroroon ngayon, alam mo kung gaano ka namin kamahal. Mahal na mahal namin siya kaso wala na eh. Kaya kung saan man siya naroroon, alam naming ginagabayan niya kami," Jemalyn said.
"Ang sakit isipin lalo 'yung ganung dinanas niya. Kaso wala na po kaming magagawa. Ilalaban po talaga namin na magkaroon siya ng katarungan."
Aired on March 16, 2013