British tourist jailed for fighting, assault, and uttering racial slurs

A British tourist is having a taste of prison life in Singapore after committing various offences here when he got drunk. Rory Lee Hipgrave, 28, was sentenced to six weeks in jail and a $3,000 fine on Thursday for injuring a bartender, uttering racial slurs, fighting with bar employees and assaulting a police officer.

It all started after he became drunk at The Vault, a bar along South Bridge Road, on Sept 15 last year. At 2.40am, he was told by the bar staff that he could not pay with his credit card because of technical problems.

Hipgrave, who works as an asbestos remover for ships, grew aggressive and hurled racial slurs at Derek Lin Da Quan, 27, the bar's assistant manager. He then went to the bar counter and started throwing glasses. One hit bartender Cheng Chung Yin, 24, on the head while another struck his ribs.

A brawl then ensued between Hipgrave, Cheng and Lin, which only ended when police arrived. But Hipgrave was not done. He charged at Sergeant Shahidah Hamid and she had to subdue him with her taser.

A blood test found 124mg of alcohol per 100ml of Hipgrave's blood. This was way above the legal limit of 80mg of alcohol per 100ml of blood for drink driving.

Defence counsel Anthony Netto said that his client had committed the offences on the spur of the moment and the imposition of fines would be appropriate. However, District Judge Jasbendar Kaur said that the state Hipgrave was in after "consuming copious amounts of alcohol" was an aggravating factor.

She then jailed him for four weeks for causing hurt by a rash act by throwing the two glasses at Cheng, and two weeks each for fighting with the bar employees and charging at the police officer. He was further fined $3,000 for uttering the racial slurs.

She then ordered the four-week jail term to run consecutively with one of the two-week prison sentences, making a total sentence of six weeks.

Lin and Cheng have also been charged for affray. They have not been dealt with yet.