Spurned man found guilty of stabbing student nurse

He is convicted of attempted murder after repeatedly stabbing her for rejecting advances

A man who repeatedly stabbed a student nurse at the void deck of her block after she spurned his advances was yesterday found guilty of attempted murder by the High Court.

During his trial, the Indian national, 34, whose name has been redacted from court documents to protect the victim's identity, denied he had any intention to kill her.

He claimed he had taken a knife with him to meet her as he intended to commit suicide in front of her, but could not recall what had happened when he stabbed her.

Justice Woo Bih Li found that the accused had intended to kill the victim, who was 20 at the time, pointing to her testimony, the accused's statements to the police, and the way he had "repeatedly, relentlessly and forcefully" attacked her.

He will be sentenced at a later date. He faces life imprisonment or up to 20 years in prison, and possible caning or a fine.

He got to know the student nurse in February 2013, while she was attached to the hospital where he worked as a healthcare assistant.

He wooed her even though she had a boyfriend. She initially played along but later apologised, telling him "it was a joke all along".

He refused to accept the rejection and even turned up outside her flat to ask for her hand in marriage.

On Dec 19, 2013, he again went to her home to propose marriage. He behaved aggressively on being rebuffed but left after the police were called. He went home, hid a knife in his sock and returned, sleeping at the void deck to wait for her.

At about 8.30am the next day, he confronted her and demanded she go with him to talk. When she refused, he stabbed her in the lower back. She tried to push him away but he stabbed her in the abdomen.

After she fell to the floor, he continued stabbing and slashing her on her head, neck, body and arms.

The woman's parents rushed down upon hearing her screams. When her father saw the accused with a knife in his hand on top of his daughter, he pushed the assailant away. The knife dropped and the accused fled after a brief struggle. He was detained by two passers-by and arrested by the police.

Justice Woo accepted the victim's account, who said that as the accused was stabbing her, he shouted "saavudi" in Tamil, which meant "die". He also told her: "If I can't have you, no man should have you."

The judge noted the accused had told the police after his arrest that he wanted to kill the victim because she cheated on him. The number and nature of the injuries, as well as the way the accused had attacked the victim, reinforced his view that the man had intended to kill her, said the judge.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on February 15, 2018, with the headline 'Spurned man found guilty of stabbing student nurse'. Print Edition | Subscribe