Man jailed for theft, drug taking and hurting nurse in hospital

SINGAPORE - A prison officer was switching the leg restraint of a man on a hospital bed when he grabbed a staff nurse and arm locked her at the neck.

The court heard that Royston James Woodworth, 41, was arrested for an offence of public nuisance on July 18 last year, and was transferred to Tan Tock Seng Hospital from prison two days later as he claimed to be unwell.

On July 20, he refused to dress up after Ms Lee Cui Wen, 25, and an assistant had sponged him. He then complained to prison officer Toh Hong Chye, 31, that his leg restraint was uncomfortable, asking for it to be attached to his right leg rather than the left. As Mr Toh was removing the restraint, Woodworth charged out of the bed and attacked Ms Lee.

He only released her after several people, including doctors, intervened.

On Thursday (Feb 15), Woodworth pleaded guilty to causing hurt, four counts of theft and one of taking methamphetamine.

He was sentenced to a total of 15 months and 15 weeks in jail, which was backdated to Aug 7 last year.

Eight other theft charges were taken into consideration during sentencing.

The court heard that he stole a Marshall Bluetooth box worth $455 from Mustafa Centre on Jan 2, 2016; groceries worth $153 from the same place on May 5 that year; a battery pack and two packets of rice totalling $35 from Giant at Suntec City Mall on Nov 10 the same year.

On Jan 12 last year, he stole a $3,180 red floor lamp from JW Marriott Singapore on Beach Road.

His lawyer Nakoorsha A.K., assigned by the Criminal Legal Aid Scheme, said in mitigation that Woodworth had been diagnosed with bipolar II disorder since 2009 and was depressed. He also had HIV.