Man jailed three weeks for punching and damaging taxi windscreen

Gary Shen Rongji was jailed for three weeks for punching a taxi windscreen and causing damage amounting to $1,233.
Gary Shen Rongji was jailed for three weeks for punching a taxi windscreen and causing damage amounting to $1,233.PHOTO: ST FILE

SINGAPORE - A mobile phone retailer who punched a taxi windscreen and caused damage amounting to $1,233 was jailed for three weeks on Friday (July 15).

Gary Shen Rongji, 31, admitted to committing mischief at Jalan Singa in Bedok on May 23 last year. He was given a concurrent sentence of one week's jail after admitting to pushing a Special Constabulary sergeant on his chest that day.

A district court heard that Shen had been drinking with his friends at Hotel Royal when he and sales assistant Li Qingyang, 23, boarded Mr Eng Teck Chye's taxi at about 1am that day last year indicating that they wanted to go to to Kaki Bukit Avenue 1. During the journey, Shen got into a dispute with the 37-year-old driver over the route he had chosen to take.

The altercation went up a notch when Shen suddenly hit the driver's head rest. The taxi driver stopped the vehicle and told the pair to leave but was persuaded by Mr Li to take Shen home.

At Jalan Singa, Shen alighted and while Mr Li was paying the fare Shen walked to the front of the vehicle and punched the windscreen several times, causing it to crack.

Fearing for his safety, Mr Eng locked himself in his taxi and called the police.

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

When Sergeant Trainer Jit Singh tried to interview him, Shen started abusing the officers. Sgt Travinder called for help and SC Sgt Muhammad Dzulfaiz Jamaludin, 21, arrived with a colleague.

Shen abused the officers and threatened to hit the policeman.

When SC Sgt Dzulfaiz tried to calm him down, Shen pushed the victim on his chest. He was arrested.

Shen's lawyer Anil Singh said his client has low levels of stress intolerance and resorted to drinking whenever he was faced with a difficult situation. On average, he drank about three times a week and drank to the point of intoxication, he said.

The lawyer said that that day, Shen had had a heated quarrel with his wife and joined his friends for drinks at a pub after work as he was still upset. He later had more drinks at the hotel in Newton.

Mr Singh said his client was diagnosed with persistent depressive disorder caused by his financial and family stressors. He was too inebriated to realise the gravity of his actions and apologises to the officers.

Three other charges were considered during his sentencing. The final repair bill for the Premier taxi came up to $1,232, which was paid in full by Shen.