Janelle Manahan: I was a battered girlfriend
MANILA, Philippines - Murder witness Janelle Manahan admitted Friday that her late boyfriend, Ramgen Revilla Bautista, used to beat her.
Speaking to ANC's Headstart, Manahan said Revilla was a protective boyfriend who was prone to jealous rages to the point that he would not allow her to speak to other men.
"It was bad. I was hoping he would change and he did naman," she told Headstart host Karen Davila.
Manahan said Revilla would also beat up his own siblings after being left as the quasi-paternal authority in the family.
Manahan's lawyer, Argee Guevarra, said Ramgen was a violent person whose violence "manifested in several beatings (and) strangulations of his own siblings."
Guevarra said Ramgen's mother, Genelyn Magsaysay, would sometimes shield Janelle when her son became violent.
"In fairness to the mother, she protected and provided protection to Janelle. Every time she was about to be beaten, she would proceed to the room of the mother and that was like a sacred ground, like a safe zone," he said.
Manahan said Ramgen's siblings were very angry with their older brother for lording over them while receiving favor from their real father, former senator Ramon Revilla Sr.
Asked why she is revealing things about Ramgen now, she said: "I want to be transparent about what he really is."
Revenge of the bullied
Last October 28, Ramgen was murdered by a masked attacker inside the family home in Parañaque City. Janelle was shot twice by the attacker but survived the incident.
Janelle has accused several of Ramgen's siblings including Ramona Belen "Mara" Bautista and Ramon Joseph "RJ" of conspiring to murder their brother.
RJ is currently in jail while Ramona fled the country after confessing on TV that she lied to police about being kidnapped after Ramgen's murder.
Guevarra said Ramgen's murder came about due to many things: the beatings, strained financial resources of the family, and jealousy for their elder brother because of the preference being shown by Don Ramon "combined into an explosive mix."
"Sa kulturang Pilipino, may kasabihan 'Lintik lang ang walang ganti.' This is a revenge of the bullied," he said.
He said everybody in the Bautista family should be treated as co-conspirators in the murder. He also said he has information that Ramona is going to different parts of Europe.
Asked if they are convinced about Ramona's role in Ramgen's murder, the lawyer said: "We are almost certain she is part, she is a co-conspirator. She's a principal in legal terms. She is a principal by indispensable cooperation."
Guevarra said he also feels sorry for Ramgen's mother, whom Janelle said has been diagnosed with schizophrenia.
"She failed to perform her duties as a mother," he said.