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Antipolo Grade 5 student died due to 'rare condition,' not teacher's slap: autopsy report

By NICK GARCIA Published Oct 12, 2023 10:32 am

The Grade 5 student from Antipolo whose teacher allegedly pulled his hair and slapped him died due to a "rare condition" and not the physical action, the autopsy report showed.

Antipolo police chief Lt. Col. Ryan Manongdo said Francis Jay Gumikib, 14, died of "cerebral edema secondary to intracerebral hemorrhage, consistent with a ruptured artery with arteriovenous malformation."

Cerebral edema means swelling of the brain, while intracerebral hemorrhage is a type of stroke usually caused by the rupture of tiny arteries within the brain.

Maria Anna Lissa dela Cruz, chief of the Philippine National Police-Forensic Group medico-legal office in Rizal, in a press conference, said the rupture was "non-traumatic in nature," though didn't say what disease caused it.

Dela Cruz said they cannot disclose their expert opinion yet since they haven't informed Gumikib's family yet.

This disease, she said, occurs in patients between ages 1 to 18. It shows no symptoms and can happen spontaneously.

Asked if it had anything to do with the slap, she only said the CT scan showed the hemorrhage coming from the innermost area of the brain.

According to the Brain Injury Association of America, non-traumatic brain injuries are caused by internal factors such as lack of oxygen, exposure to toxins, or pressure from a tumor.

Dela Cruz said the report has been forwarded to the Antipolo police, which would file a case against the teacher for alleged violation of Republic Act 7610 or the Special Protection of Children Against Abuse, Exploitation and Discrimination Act. The teacher was cleared of the homicide complaint.

It's still possible to file a child abuse against her, the police said.

Gumikib of Peñafrancia Elementary School was reportedly slapped after being scolded because he complained about the noise made by his classmates.

The teacher then allegedly pulled his collar and his hair before slapping him. He repeatedly complained about severe headaches and pain in his ear on Sept. 20.

He was still able to attend his classes over the next days but was rushed to the hospital on Sept. 26 after experiencing dizziness, vomiting, and loss of balance. He went into a coma and died on Oct. 2.

The teacher was placed under preventive suspension for 90 days without pay.

The Department of Education and the Commission on Human Rights are also conducting their respective investigations.