Drunken student who punched boy and pushed station manager given 16 months' probation

Vinodh Kumar Mathyalakan pleaded guilty to a charge of causing hurt and one of using criminal force.
Vinodh Kumar Mathyalakan pleaded guilty to a charge of causing hurt and one of using criminal force.PHOTO: ST FILE

SINGAPORE - A polytechnic student who boarded an MRT train drunk, punched a 13-year-old boy and pushed an SMRT station manager, was sentenced to 16 months' probation on Tuesday (Feb 2).

Vinodh Kumar Mathyalakan, 20, pleaded guilty to a charge of causing hurt and one of using criminal force. He also admitted a charge of public nuisance, which was taken into consideration during sentencing.

The court heard that Vinodh boarded a southbound train from Admiralty MRT Station at about 12.10am on Oct 10, 2015.

At about 12.25am, he started to shout and talk loudly, annoying other passengers.

As the train approached Yio Chu Kang Station at about 12.30am, Vinodh went up to a 15-year-old student, grabbed his arm and asked him to go to Geylang to buy cigarettes for him.

When the student said he did not want to, Vinodh went up to another 13-year-old student, grabbed his right arm and asked him to buy cigarettes.

When the teen refused, Vinodh pushed him three times in the chest, before aiming a punch at his face, but hitting his arm instead.

When the train doors opened, both students ran to the SMRT station manager, Mr Tan Siang Peng, 52, to tell him about the incident.

Vinodh followed them and asked Mr Tan whether the train service to Aljunied was still operating.

When Mr Tan told him that it was not, Vinodh became angry and pushed Mr Tan in the chest with both his hands.

Mr Tan and his colleagues managed to restrain Vinodh.

For voluntarily causing hurt, Vinodh could have been jailed for two years and fined $5,000. For using criminal force on Mr Tan, Vinodh could have been jailed for three months and fined $1,500.

The maximum penalty for causing a public nuisance is a $1,000 fine.