Sometimes the basis for an acquittal is the existence of several probable versions of the crime that makes up reasonable doubt.
In the case of alleged murder victim Jennifer Laude a.k.a. Jeffrey Laude, the defense team of Pvt. First Class Joseph Scott Pemberton could have a field day given several probable versions of what happened that fateful night of October 11, 2014 inside Room No. 1 of Celzone Lodge in Olongapo City. The facts that have surfaced so far offer several possibilities. Take a look:
First Version: Barbie and Gallamos Affidavits
At around 10:45 pm on October 11, 2014, Laude was drinking ice tea with his friend and fellow transgender “Barbie” a.k.a. Mark Clarence Gelviro at Ambyanz Bar in Olongapo City when four members of the visiting US Marines approached them. Laude agreed to go to a motel with one of the US Marines, Pemberton after they talked for merely 5 minutes. “Barbie” described Pemberton to be friendly but already drunk. She also claimed to have accompanied Laude and Pemberton when they checked in at Celzone Lodge at around 10:55. “Barbie” even stayed with the couple inside Room 1 for ten minutes. Before leaving, “Barbie” told Pemberton to ” make sure her friend is safe.’” On her way down the motel, he met another Filipino and joined him in Room 5 of same motel. She stayed there for thirty minutes or so.
A motel front desk clerk Elias Gallamos noticed that around 11:30 Pemberton came out of Room 1 but left the door open. Seeing this and thinking that the couple had left the room, he took a peek inside but hesitated to enter when he saw the feet of Laude inside the toilet. After fifteen minutes, Gallamos became concerned that Laude took a long time to leave. This led him to enter the room and discover the lifeless body of Laude. He immediately called the police to report the incident.
At around 11:45, “Barbie” claimed that the front desk clerk of the motel informed him that his friend “Jeffrey” has passed out inside the toilet of his rented room. Barbie proceeded back to Room 1 where he found the police already conducting an investigation and found the lifeless body of his friend Laude.
The sworn affidavits of “Barbie” and Gallamos were secured by the local media.
Second Version: Initial Police Report Sex Service Gone Wrong.
According to the report prepared by investigator-on-case SPO3 Tyrone DP Tecson, the suspect Pemberton engaged Laude for “sex service.” His discovery that Laude was “gay,” the report said, “prompted him to kill the victim.” This a verbatim reportage by the news website Rappler (http://www.rappler.com/nation/72224-killing-jennifer-laude-police-report).
This “sex worker angle” could be precipitated from the following:
1.) It is not uncommon that prostitutes frequent Olongapo bars whenever US warships anchors at Subic Bay.
2.) In a report by ABC 5 website (http://www.interaksyon.com/article/97765/laude-was-not-a-sex-worker-pemberton-didnt-know-victim-was-not-a-real-woman—witnesses), “Barbie” claimed that it was he and Laude who first saw the US Marines entering the bar. Laude avoided socialization until she went to Ambyanz on the night of October 11. Coincidentally, the “resumption” of Laude’s socialization coincided with the anchorage of two US Navy warships at Subic Bay.
3.) The quick 5-minute conversation between Laude and Pemberton that made the latter agree to check-in in a motel. How come Laude will agree to go with a total stranger to a motel room when they barely knew each other. Their acquaintance which lead to motel rendezvous even beat the fastest speed dating!
4.) Pembelton was kept in the dark that he is dealing with a transvestite. He believe all the time that Laude and “Barbie” are women.
5.) Laude voluntarily went with Pemberton to the Celzone Lodge.
6.) “Barbie” casually hooked up another Filipino male who was a guest at motel and joined him at his room (Just like that!).
8.) Two condoms were reportedly found in the room’s waste basket. One was filled with semen and fecal residues. Even Senator Miriam Santiago concluded that consensual anal sex transpired.
Yet, the family of Laude vehemently denied that Laude is not a commercial sex worker. They claim that Laude is supported by his German boyfriend, Marc Sueselbeck who was at the time of the incident was out of the country.
Questions, questions. questions!
Actually, the affidavits of “Barbie” and “Gallamos” and the police report opened a pandora box of intriguing questions that only a skilled Naval Criminal Investigative Service(NCIS) detective can untangle.
1.) Why did Laude “socialized” with a total stranger when he has a German boyfriend who provides him monthly allowance? Any transvestite who has a foreigner boyfriend who openly accepts his sexual orientation is already considered lucky. What more if he is given monthly allowance? Surely there could be a lot of jealous persons would like to be in her place.
2.) In some reports, Room 1 where Laude and Pembelton checked in was near the front desk. If it is true that Laude was severely beaten as shown in his autopsy report, how come this was not overheard by the observant motel clerk? Even if Laure is transvestite he still has a male anatomy and strength to ward off his assailant. That will surely create commotion that can awaken any soul in that motel.
3.) How convenient is it for Barbie to say that she stayed at Room No. 5 with another total stranger that he just met a few minutes after leaving Laude and Pembelton. Why did this mystery guy not named? Why did Barbie chose to stay at the motel? Is he there to “secure” Laude’s safety? Or was it a convenient alibi?
4.) How convenient to say that Pemberton left the door of Room 1 open when he existed the motel at around 11:30?. Why on earth will a murder left the room open for the public to see his brutal crime? It could also given the an unknown assailant access to the room.
5.) The 15 to 30 unaccounted minutes after Pemberton left room no. 1 is a black hole. A lot of things could have happened during that span of time like any other person than the US Marine entering the room and beating Laude to death.
6.) The time line after Gallamos discovered the murder and the time the Olongapo police arrived at the motel should be carefully inspected. Laude and Pemberton checked in at around 11:00 pm; Pemberton left Room 1 at around 11:30pm; Barbie came out Room 5 and discovered the lifeless body of Laude at around 11:45pm with the Olongapo police already at the scene! With all the alleged anal sex, mauling and choking happening in between- could all these things happen so fast?? One would wonder why the police which usually takes forever to respond – was so fast to arrive at the scene of the crime! They could have been contacted so much earlier for them to arrive at 11:45pm.
A lot of observers say that there is something about “Barbie” and Gallamos’ testimonies that smells fishy. But no thanks to the emotional and “nationalist” people like Harry Roque, “Barbie ” is now accepted under the witness protection program and far from the prying eyes of police investigators.
With all this curious twists and turns in the facts presented, one cannot escape but reminded of the Julie Ann Rodelas Murder case.
Who can imagine that Rodelas, an FHM model was murdered by her best friend and fellow sexy model Althea Altamirano after the latter suspected her to be spreading rumors that she already has a child and is already spent or laos. Althea confided this to her boyfriend JR who then plotted to kill Rodelas. If not for JR’s sheer stupidity of leaving the Mcdonald’s takeout receipt with Rodelas’ lifeless body, the crime could not have been solved.
With sinister plots aplenty in this country, other possibilities in the Laude murder case should not to be readily dismissed, If only to avoid another innocent man fall victim to injustice, the Philippine National Police and the National Bureau of Investigation should revisit the details of this heinous crime.
THIS BLOG DESISTED FROM POSTING PHOTOS OF MURDER SUSPECT PEMBERTON TO PROTECT HIS HUMAN AND CONSTITUTIONAL RIGHTS TO BE PRESUMED INNOCENT UNTIL PROVEN GUILTY IN A COURT OF LAW).
(all photos taken from internet, rightful owners may ask them to be pulled down)