Sri Lankan student jailed for 10 weeks for molesting woman in lift

The 28-year-old student was sentenced to 10 weeks' jail, after pleading guilty to grabbing a woman's buttock in a lift at Buangkok Crescent.
The 28-year-old student was sentenced to 10 weeks' jail, after pleading guilty to grabbing a woman's buttock in a lift at Buangkok Crescent.PHOTO: ST FILE

SINGAPORE - A Sri Lankan student who molested a woman in a HDB lift was jailed for 10 weeks on Tuesday (May 3).

Yattowita Withanage Buddhika Padmakumara, 28, pleaded guilty to grabbing the 33-year-old woman's buttock in a lift at Buangkok Crescent at about 7.20pm on April 13 this year.

A court heard that Padmakumara was on his way home at about 7.15pm that day when he saw the victim walking alone from a bus stop. He decided to follow her as he found her very attractive.

He followed her into a lift at a block at Buangkok Crescent and randomly pressed for the 10th floor. He then went towards the back of the lift, behind her.

As the lift was going up, he inched closer to the back of the victim.

When the lift door opened at the 10th floor, he walked past her and simultaneously used his right hand to grab her buttock once, intending to outrage her modesty.

He then ran out of the lift. The victim was shocked and shouted at him.

He turned briefly and said "sorry'' before fleeing down the staircase.

She called the police.

The court heard that the entire incident was captured on closed-circuit television camera within the lift. Through the CCTV footage and follow-up investigations, Padmakumara was traced and arrested five days later at a flat in Buangkok Crescent.

He told the court he was doing a one-year diploma course, and had drunk alcohol before the incident.

He could have been jailed for up to two years, fined, caned or received any combined punishment.