3 weeks' jail for man who damaged taxi, pushed police officer

A mobile phone retailer who punched and cracked a taxi windscreen was jailed three weeks for mischief yesterday.

Gary Shen Rongji, 31, admitted hitting the windscreen of a Premier Taxi cab, causing damage amounting to $1,233, in Jalan Singa in Bedok on May 23 last year.

He was also jailed one week for pushing a Volunteer Special Constabulary (VSC) sergeant in the chest later that day. The sentence will run concurrently.

Deputy Public Prosecutor Daphne Lim said Shen was drunk when he and a friend, sales assistant Li Qingyang, 23, got into Mr Eng Teck Chye's taxi in Newton Road at about 1am that day.

Shen told the 37-year-old driver to go to Kaki Bukit Avenue 1. He then had a dispute with the driver about the directions taken.

When the taxi stopped near Eunos MRT station, Shen suddenly hit the driver's headrest.

Mr Eng then told the two men to leave, but Mr Li persuaded him to drive Shen home.

When the taxi reached Jalan Singa, Shen alighted. While Mr Li was settling the taxi fare, Shen suddenly walked to the front and punched the taxi windscreen several times, causing it to crack.

Fearing for his safety, Mr Eng locked himself in and called 999.

Shen has made full restitution of the repair cost of the windscreen.

The court heard that at about 2am, two police officers arrived at Jalan Singa and noticed Shen walking unsteadily.

When Sergeant Travinder Jit Singh tried to speak to him, Shen started shouting and screaming at the officers. Sgt Travinder then called for help.

When VSC Sgt Muhammad Dzulfaiz Jamaludin, 21, arrived with a colleague, Shen abused the officers and threatened to attack them.

VSC Sgt Dzulfaiz tried to calm him down, but Shen pushed him in the chest. He was arrested.

Shen's lawyer, Mr Anil Singh, said his client was diagnosed with persistent depressive disorder caused by financial and family stress.

He was too drunk to realise the gravity of his actions and offered his apologies.

Three other charges were considered during his sentencing.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on July 16, 2016, with the headline '3 weeks' jail for man who damaged taxi, pushed police officer'. Print Edition | Subscribe