Dear A.S.S. Editor

A 67-year-old man killed his neighbour’s cat with a carving knife and was sentenced to seven years’ preventive detention on Tuesday. Tan was sentenced to life imprisonment in 1996 for culpable homicide, but was released in 2010 after 14 years behind bars.

On Jan 30, 2017, he slashed his neighbour’s Russian Blue cat, when he saw it mating with one of his own cats outside his flat at Block 1 Spooner Road. Tan attack the Russian Blue cat with a carving knife, slashing its abdomen and exposing its intestines. The cat was found injured by a neighbour who called the police and the cat was died the following day afternoon. Tan and the Russian Blue cat’s owner had clashed several times previously over the cat. He had also challenged the Russian Blue cat’s owner to a fight before, saying that he had been to prison before for stabbing someone to death.

Besides the charge for animal cruelty for killing the Russian Blue cat, Tan also pleaded guilty to one count of criminal intimidation and one count of receiving stolen property. About a month and a half after he had killed the Russian Blue cat, Tan threatened the Blue cat’s owner 11-year-old nephew, telling him: “I will cut your neck and throw you downstairs.” This happened after the boy spotted Tan playing with another one of his relative uncle’s cat and asked Tan to give it back.

According to a psychiatric report, Tan has anti-social personality traits, “characterised by a pervasive pattern of disregard and violation of the rights of others … impulsivity and aggression, and reckless disregard for the safety of others”. Psychiatrists had pointed out that Tan’s “threshold for anger” is low, and “he is likely to express his anger and attempt to regain control by resorting to weapons”.

The preventive detention he was sentenced to on Tuesday is targeted at repeat offenders who are considered a menace to society because they are beyond rehabilitation. As for the charge of receiving stolen property, it was for an unrelated incident involving S$6,950 from anonymous sources, linked to a police impersonation scam.

Fahmy Abdullah

A.S.S. Contributor

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