SINGAPORE - A 63-year-old part-time security guard was jailed for eight months on Wednesday (Feb 14) after he pleaded guilty to using a lit cigarette to burn a 12-year-old boy.
The court heard that Peh Kheng, while drunk, attacked the boy because he thought that the child had screamed at the void deck of a block of flats in Lengkok Bahru.
Deputy Public Prosecutor Dwayne Lum said that Peh started consuming alcohol at 10am on Nov 17 last year and was intoxicated by around 6.30pm.
While smoking a cigarette, he heard someone screaming nearby. Peh then went to a nearby block and saw the boy waiting for a lift. Assuming that the boy was the one who screamed, Peh attacked him.
DPP Lum said: "The victim was alone at the lift lobby when the accused suddenly rushed up to him and pushed his scooter to the ground. The victim turned when he heard his scooter crash to the ground."
Peh then pressed his lit cigarette on the right side of the boy's neck before walking away.
The child told his mother about the attack when he reached home and she alerted the police.
The boy later went to Alexandra Hospital where he was found to have suffered a circular dry burn on his neck that was 0.7cm in diameter.
DPP Lum said that CCTV footage at the lift lobby captured Peh committing the offence.
He added: "The CCTV does not show the victim screaming loudly (and did not show) any interaction between the two before the accused decided to burn the victim with the lit cigarette."
The court heard that Peh lives two blocks away from the boy. He also had no prior disputes with the child and his family.
For hurting the boy with a lit cigarette, Peh could have been jailed for up to seven years and fined.
He cannot be caned as he is above 50 years old.