Man dies after allegedly strangled by son during row

Police are investigating the death of a 67-year-old man, alleged to have been strangled by his son during a heated argument.

Neighbours of the family, who lived with their maid in a semi-detached house in West Coast Rise, said they heard screams and shouts coming from the unit on Tuesday evening.

Police officers and paramedics arrived at the scene shortly after that.

According to Chinese evening daily Lianhe Wanbao, 29-year-old Mark Tan Peng Liat allegedly strangled his father after an argument between the duo turned violent.

Mr Tan Kok Keng fell unconscious and was taken to the National University Hospital just after 5.30pm on Tuesday. He suffered a cardiac arrest and was pronounced dead about an hour later. The younger Tan was arrested on the same day.

The Straits Times understands that the family's maid was home when the incident happened and had called the police. The case has since been classified as murder. It is not known what the row was about.

When The Straits Times visited the unit yesterday, the lights were turned off and there appeared to be no one in the house. A blue Mitsubishi Evolution belonging to the younger Tan was parked outside the house.

Neighbours said the police had barricaded the road until about 1am yesterday. Residents returning home had to show their identification cards with their addresses before they were allowed in.

A neighbour, who declined to be named, said the older Tan, a divorcee, was a quiet but friendly man who would wave to neighbours.

"I've lived here for 29 years but have not interacted much with him," he said. "But he is a generous man and every Chinese New Year, he would give red packets to the maids working on this street."

He described the younger Tan as more aloof, adding that he seldom greeted neighbours.

The younger Tan, who got married in November 2012, had just celebrated his 29th birthday last Friday. His Facebook profile painted a picture of a man who loved cars and travelled often.

A search by The Straits Times showed that he owned a model and talent management agency, The People Studio, at Kallang Way. His wife is also listed as one of its owners.

leepearl@sph.com.sg