Delivery driver jailed 20 weeks for punching aunt in the face

A 26-year-old man repeatedly punched his aunt's face, after which she landed in hospital with fractures to her nose and eye socket.

Yesterday, Verner Low Jun Han was sentenced to 20 weeks' jail, after he pleaded guilty to one charge of causing grievous hurt.

Low, formerly known as Verner Low York Yen, worked as a delivery driver for his aunt, Ms Susie Oh Yen Peng, 42, at her East Coast Road cafe Oh Deli.

They also lived in the same house in St Patrick's Road, with other family members. The house is co-owned by Ms Oh.

The district court heard yesterday that on July 10 last year, at about 8.40am, Low had an argument with another employee at the cafe. He wanted to take some home delivery items, which were not yet ready for delivery.

"Ms Oh approached Low and told him to better manage his work attitude," Deputy Public Prosecutor Lester Ho told the court.

Low then left the cafe, but returned shortly after and quarrelled with his aunt.

Said Mr Ho: "Low was frustrated that Ms Oh did not approve his request to take the day off. A day before, on July 9, 2015, Low had applied to take leave on July 10, 2015, as he wanted to celebrate his son's first birthday."

Low again requested that he be given the day off.

However, Ms Oh said there was a shortage of staff at the cafe. Upset, Low then told Ms Oh that he wanted to resign.

"She responded by telling him that he could do so, if that was what he wanted. She added that he could also move out of their home as well, if he wanted to be fully independent," Mr Ho told the court.

Low then left the cafe. At about 8.50am, Ms Oh went home and found Low there.

"While on the front porch of the residence, she again told him that he could move out of the residence," said Mr Ho.

Low suddenly starting punching her on the left side of her face. Ms Oh fell to the ground and was bleeding from her nose. He stopped hitting her only when one of her other nephews intervened.

Ms Oh was taken to Mount Elizabeth Hospital with a broken left eye socket and nasal bone. She was discharged four days later.

The total cost of her medical treatment and hospitalisation was $9,245.12.

Low could have been jailed for up to 10 years, and also fined or caned for causing grievous hurt.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on October 04, 2016, with the headline 'Delivery driver jailed 20 weeks for punching aunt in the face'. Print Edition | Subscribe