26 year-old S. Sarbir Singh received accolades last year during the National Day parade, where he was praised for turning his life of crime around and for completing a law and management course at Temasek Polytechnic. But on Friday, he was sent back to jail again for offences that he committed in 2012 and 2013.
In court last month, Singh pleaded guilty to punching a taxi driver, 56 year-old Mr Woo Teng Fatt, in the face, kicking him before pinning him onto the ground. The then 23 year-old Singh and his wife were at the Singapore Flyer on 24th October 2012 when they asked their taxi driver Mr Woo whether he accepted NETS payments.
Mr Woo said he did not accept NETS in a rude manner, and Singh got riled up. He kicked the front passenger door and left with his wife. When Mr Woo chased down the couple, Singh pushed the man who fell and left. Mr Woo then called the police and followed them to prevent them from leaving, but ended up getting into a tussle with Singh again where they fought and exchanged vulgarities. Singh punched and kicked the victim and later swung the victim to the ground and used his knee to pin the victim’s neck and stomach.
Security officers intervened at this point.
Singh also pleaded guilty to a second charge of causing hurt to his cousin, Ms Mary Lynn Ramos, then 29 years-old, by punching, kicking and then stepping on her chest at the common corridor outside her Shunfu Road home exactly one year later from his first offence (24th October 2013).
He had gone to Ms Ramos’ home to to look for his wife and banged on the victim’s door and windows. When Ms Ramos told him that his wife was not in, Singh tried to barge into the unit and Ms Ramos used an umbrella to block him. Singh grabbed the umbrella, dragged Ms Ramos out into the corridor and pushed her, causing her to trip and fall. He attacked her and left her with multiple serious injuries, including several facial fractures.
Singh’s lawyer, N Sudha Nair, said her client came from a broken home and had a tumultuous childhood .
In sentencing him to a total of 20 months’ jail, District Judge Michelle Yap noted Singh’s effort to turn his life around from the time he was first charged for the offences.
“I am persuaded that he genuinely wants to change for the better, and will accordingly give some weight to this. The accused had done wrong, and it is now the time for him to face the music and be punished for the offences, ” she said.