‘Lumabas kayo’: Family of flight attendant cries for justice as manhunt continues

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, January 5) — The family of flight attendant Christine Angelica Dacera, who was found dead in a room after a New Year's Eve party, are crying for justice, as they called on suspects and other persons of interests to turn themselves in and cooperate with authorities to resolve the case.

Sharon Dacera, Christine's mother, faced reporters on Tuesday, decrying the death of her 23-year-old daughter. She also appealed to President Rodrigo Duterte for help.

"Gusto ko lang manawagan kung, lalo na sa mga taong involved na doon sa aksidente na nangyari sa anak ko, kung inosente kayo, lumabas kayo," urged Sharon. "Kung gusto niyo patunayan na wala kayong kasalanan, lumabas kayo."

[Translation: I want to call on those who were involved in the accident with my daughter, if you are innocent, come out. If you want to prove that you are not at fault, come out.]

Atty. Brick Reyes, spokesperson of the Dacera family, said there are 11 identified suspects in the family's complaint and several other John Does. He mentioned that a certain Rey Englis approached the police for a statement but Reyes said he has yet to confirm this.

Reyes added that Christine's case is ongoing and that they are in the middle of inquest proceedings, despite the Philippine National Police declaring the matter "solved."

According to the PNP, a case is deemed solved when the offender has been identified and taken to custody, when there is sufficient evidence to charge the offender and when the offender has been charged before the prosecutor's office. The police had only been able to arrest three of the suspects and slap them with rape with homicide charges, while eight remain at large, Makati Police Chief Col. Harold Depositar noted.

Reyes also revealed that one of the suspects was allegedly released without proper investigation.

"We were fortunate to retain the other two but one was released from the Makati police department and we're trying to get an explanation why," he said during the press briefing.

Christine was found unconscious in the bathtub of her hotel room in Makati City on New Year’s Day following a party with friends the night before, initial investigation revealed. Police said hotel personnel tried to revive the 23-year-old before she was rushed to a hospital, where she was declared dead.

Depositar said separately tracker teams have been deployed to locate and contact the other persons of interest in the case, but there have been no responses as of yet. He added officials are awaiting the official autopsy and medical reports, which he said are expected to be released on Tuesday noon.

Christine’s case has sparked a nationwide outrage overnight, as calls for justice shot to the top social media trending topics. The hashtags #StopVictimBlaming and #ProtectDrunkGirls also flooded netizens’ feeds in relation to the matter.

Christine's mother defended her daughter amid rumors questioning Christine's behavior and calling her a "loose person." Atty. Jose Ledda III, legal counsel of Dacera's family, also argued that the victim should never be blamed for having been raped.

"Blame a girl if lasing siya at nabasag 'yung baso...But don't ever blame a girl na pagkagising niya, binaboy siya. Don't ever blame a girl kapag namatay siya," he said.

[Translation: Blame a girl if she dropped a glass when she was drunk. But don't ever blame a girl for being drunk and waking up having been raped or for dying.]