SINGAPORE - Police arrested 14 residents from the Singapore Boys’ Home for rioting on Friday evening (Sept 28). Two male staff and an auxiliary police officer were taken to Ng Teng Fong Hospital with minor injuries.
The police said they received a call for help at 5.51pm. They are investigating the incident.
The Straits Times arrived outside the home in Jurong at around 7pm and saw more than 15 police vehicles and 10 police bikes there.
The Singapore Boys’ Home is a juvenile residential home run by the Ministry of Social and Family Development. It houses at-risk young people aged between 12 and 19 who might also have been in trouble with the law.
Mr James Tan, 70, was cycling along Jurong West Street 24 when he heard shouting near the main gate of the home.
The retiree recounted what he had briefly seen to ST.
Mr Tan, a Jurong West resident for 20 years, said: “At about 6pm, just as I was cycling past the entrance, I saw police officers rushing to enter the Boys’ Home. The shouts came from boys inside the premises and they seemed to be directed at the policemen.”
But Mr Tan could not make out what was being said. So he continued cycling.
Later at 6.30pm, he realised the situation was more serious when he saw many flashing lights from police vehicles parked outside the home.
The road leading to Jurong West Street 24 had been blocked by police.
Another witness, who gave his name only as Mr Hazli, 42, said he had to make a big detour to get to a nearby mosque.
Mr Hazli and Mr Tan were among a handful of bystanders outside the home.
Added Mr Tan: “It’s quite normal to see a few police cars parked outside the home whenever there’s small trouble with the residents. But the sight of so many police vehicles tonight can only mean there’s a big problem.”
The last time many police vehicles were spotted there was in September 2016, when 26 residents from the home were arrested for unlawful assembly.
Back then, residents from a nearby Housing Board estate reported they heard groups of boys shouting vulgarities and making banging sounds which went on for hours.
Correction note: An earlier version of the article said the home houses at-risk young people aged between 12 and 21 who might also have been in trouble with the law. It should be between 12 and 19. We are sorry for the error.