Cleaner jailed 15 months for stabbing colleague

Yang Changchun was jailed for 15 months after he pleaded guilty to a charge of causing hurt using a weapon likely to cause death.
Yang Changchun was jailed for 15 months after he pleaded guilty to a charge of causing hurt using a weapon likely to cause death. PHOTO: BERITA HARIAN FILE

SINGAPORE - Unhappy with his colleague, a 47-year-old cleaner who was intoxicated after an evening of drinking stabbed him in the stomach with a knife at their home, a court heard.

On Monday (July 11), Yang Changchun was jailed for 15 months after he pleaded guilty to a charge of causing hurt using a weapon likely to cause death.

A district court heard that Yang and the victim, Mr Zhang Yuekun, 45, both Chinese nationals, worked at the same cleaning company and lived in separate rooms at No 14 Jalan Suka.

On Jan 30 this year, Yang drank beer and liquor with several compatriots from 5.30pm to 9pm at their home; Mr Zhang did not join them.

At 9pm, at the front yard of their home, Mr Chen Pei Min, 39, who is a colleague and housemate of Yang and Mr Zhang, jokingly told Mr Zhang that he could throw him onto the ground with one hand.

Yang suddenly pushed Mr Chen aside and said that he was the one who could use one hand to throw Mr Zhang to the ground, Deputy Public Prosecutor (DPP) Houston Johannus told the court.

Mr Zhang responded that he could throw Yang to the ground instead, the DPP added.

Unhappy, Yang went to take a knife with a 10cm-long blade and stabbed Mr Zhang once in his abdomen, leaving a wound measuring 1.5cm by 1cm.

After a scuffle, Mr Zhang managed to wrest the knife away from Yang, with the help of Mr Chen and another compatriot, and restrained him.

Yang's blood alcohol level at the time was 165mg of ethanol per 100ml of blood - about twice the drink-driving limit.

Mr Zhang was taken to Tan Tock Seng Hospital, where he was warded for six days and given hospitalisation leave until March 4. There were injuries to his small intestine and the membrane that surrounds the stomach and abdominal organs.

District Judge Luke Tan said Yang's sentence has to reflect the fact that one cannot go around stabbing others over trivial matters.

Yang, who has been remanded in Changi Prison since Feb 1, could have been jailed for seven years and fined and caned.