Man stabbed party-goer in eye with tongs during bar fight; jailed nine months

During a brawl at Club V5 last July, Dickson Tan Yong Wen stabbed Teo Kiee Kee in the region of his right eye with tongs, leaving the victim bleeding from the eye and with a fractured eye socket. -- ST PHOTO: WANG HUI FEN
During a brawl at Club V5 last July, Dickson Tan Yong Wen stabbed Teo Kiee Kee in the region of his right eye with tongs, leaving the victim bleeding from the eye and with a fractured eye socket. -- ST PHOTO: WANG HUI FEN

SINGAPORE - A drunk man who assaulted a fellow party-goer with a pair of aluminium tongs, leaving the victim bleeding from the eye and with a fractured eye socket, was sentenced on Monday to nine months in prison for the unprovoked attack.

During a brawl at Club V5 last July, Dickson Tan Yong Wen stabbed Mr Teo Kiee Kee in the region of his right eye with the tongs, which he had picked up from the bar counter nearby.

Mr Teo also suffered bruising and a fracture in his forehead. He needed five days of medical leave, spent $952.65 on medical expenses, and still suffers from "debilitating" double vision that "affects his ability to move around".

On Monday, Tan, 27, admitted causing grievous hurt to Mr Teo, 26.

The odd-job worker's jail term comes up to 17 months, after he received a further eight months for consuming methamphetamine while out on bail for the hurt offence.

Deputy Presiding Judge of the State Courts S. Jennifer Marie also ordered that the man compensate his victim.

The court heard that the incident happened at the club in Cuscaden Road on July 15 last year.

Between 5 and 5.30am, Mr Teo had approached a girl who was crying to ask her what was wrong. A commotion ensued and he was attacked in his head and legs by unknown assailants. This was when Tan committed the offence.

Tan later apologised after the victim confronted him at the club's entrance, also handing over his name and contact details. Tan was arrested three days later after a police report was made.

Calling for a jail term of between six and nine months for the attack, Deputy Public Prosecutor Terence Szetoh said Tan had caused injury to a vulnerable part of the body.

He said Tan was jailed in 2007 and 2008 for unlicensed moneylending offences, and had also been placed on probation for unlawful assembly in 2001.

Mr Szetoh added that Tan's two charges that were taken into consideration - disorderly behaviour and punching another person in the face at Mink Club in Raffles Boulevard, on June 16 last year - showed an inclination towards aggressive behaviour.

Asking for a nine-month term for the hurt offence, defence counsel M. Mahendran said his client was remorseful and had apologised. Tan had picked up the tongs on the spur of the moment and had not planned the attack, Mr Mahendran said.

The lawyer added Tan's parents had divorced when he was only 14, and he had been in bad company when offending.

Tan pleaded guilty to two of four charges, with the rest taken into consideration. For hurting Mr Teo, he could have been jailed up to 10 years, and caned or fined.