Jail, caning for drug offender who ill-treated toddler, causing her genitals to bleed

SINGAPORE - A woman who worked as a babysitter allowed a recalcitrant drug offender to live in her flat for free after finding out that he did not have a fixed home following his release from prison.

Instead of repaying her kindness, Suhaimi Juma'at ill-treated a two-year-old girl under her care until the toddler suffered tears to her private parts that had to be surgically treated.

Suhaimi, 46, was sentenced to jail of 10 years and nine months with eight strokes of the cane on Tuesday (May 8). He pleaded guilty last month to one count of child abuse and four drug-related charges.

The court heard that Suhaimi was released from prison in 2014 and did not have a fixed place to live in.

In November 2016, he approached his cousin for help and the latter introduced him to the babysitter, who agreed to take him in rent-free.

Deputy Public Prosecutor Marshall Lim said Suhaimi volunteered to help with her babysitting duties instead of paying her rent.

He bought a straw of methamphetamine, or Ice, from a drug peddler on Feb 24 last year before returning to the woman's home, where he consumed about 3g of the substance in one sitting.

Suhaimi was still recovering from the effects of the drug when he was babysitting the little girl the next day.

At around 4pm, she defaecated outside the toilet and Suhaimi became agitated when he spotted her waste on the kitchen floor. He then took her into the toilet to clean up.

The toddler was in a squatting position when she started to play with some water in a nearby pail - further agitating Suhaimi, said DPP Lim.

As a result of his anger, Suhaimi greatly increased the force he used to clean the girl's private parts, added the DPP. He also touched her internally.

A friend of the toddler's father picked up the little girl about an hour later and took the child to her aunt's home.

The friend then spotted blood in the girl's disposable nappy and the toddler screamed in pain when she was cleaned up.

She was taken to KK Women's and Children's Hospital and was still bleeding when she arrived. The doctor found two tears in the girl's private parts which required surgery.

Besides this incident, Suhaimi also admitted to two counts of failing to report for urine tests and one count each of drug consumption and possession, the court heard.

Join ST's WhatsApp Channel and get the latest news and must-reads.