Cleaner jailed 14 months for beating 9-year-old son

A cleaner was jailed for 14 months on Thursday for assaulting his nine-year-old for stealing $50 from him. -- ST POSED PHOTO: WANG HUI FEN
A cleaner was jailed for 14 months on Thursday for assaulting his nine-year-old for stealing $50 from him. -- ST POSED PHOTO: WANG HUI FEN

A cleaner was jailed for 14 months on Thursday for assaulting his nine-year-old for stealing $50 from him.

The 28-year-old accused cannot be named to protect the identity of the victim.

He admitted last month to ill-treating his son by slapping, kicking and punching the boy on the face, body and legs at his home on April 10.

A Community Court heard that the accused, a divorcee, found $50 missing from his wallet that morning and suspected his son had taken it without his permission.

That evening, he confronted the victim who admitted to taking the money only after much questioning.

Initially, the victim said he had bought books with the money, but later confessed that he had spent it on game cards.

The accused lost his temper and began to hit the victim repeatedly over various parts of his body. He slapped, punched and kicked the victim, who was crying and tried to block the attacks.

The next day after school, the victim did not return home. He followed his friend to the latter's house. He informed his friend's father about the incident and police were called for.

Community Court Judge Lim Keng Yeow, who also ordered that the accused by bonded for $8,000 for good behaviour for 24 months, told the accused that what he did were acts of aggression on a vulnerable boy, not acts of parental correction.

"The acts are clearly unacceptable regardless of the wrong you felt you had to deal with,'' he said.

He hoped the accused would work to rebuild his relationship with his son to regain his trust, and be a father his son would be grateful for in time to come.

The maximum penalty for ill-treating a child is $4,000 and four years' jail.