Witness NOT permitted to testify as to conclusion of law

On direct examination, Gilda categorically declared that the accused tried to thrice insert his penis into her vagina. He failed in the first and second attempts because she struggled, but succeeded on the third because she was already weak. While it may be true that on cross-examination she testified that she was raped once, yet on re-direct examination she said that she was raped three times, no inconsistency at all may be deduced therefrom. There was merely confusion as to the legal qualification of the three separate acts, i.e., Gilda's answers were conclusions of law. A witness is not permitted to testify as to a conclusion of law, among which, legal responsibility is one of the most conspicuous. A witness, no matter how skillful, is not to be asked or permitted to testify as to whether or not a party is responsible to the law. Law in the sense here used embraces whatever conclusions belonging properly to the court. [G.R. No. 117217. December 2, 1996]