SINGAPORE – To catch a serial molester who evaded police cameras and wore disguises, Deputy Superintendent (DSP) (2) Low Jiing Haur led a team of four officers who staked out the locations the man frequented.
In just two weeks in July 2017, the man molested six girls aged 10 to 15 as they walked past him on overhead bridges in Hougang and Sengkang on their way to school.
The serial molester, who was a staff nurse with Khoo Teck Puat Hospital, had targeted a total of 15 victims aged 10 to 16 since 2015.
DSP (2) Low, now 47, said: “We were racing against time to catch him. I was scared he would commit more offences and the victims were so young.”
On July 21, 2017, after days of staking out an overhead bridge in Anchorvale Road, the team cornered a man loitering there. He had masking tape on his fingers.
DSP (2) Low said: “He appeared nervous when we approached him. After some questioning, he confessed he was looking for another target when we found him.”
The molester was arrested and later sentenced to three years’ jail and 10 strokes of the cane.
DSP(2) Low, who is now chief investigation officer at Jurong Police Division, was among 918 Home Team officers recognised at the Ministry of Home Affairs’ (MHA) National Day Awards on Wednesday. The winners are recognised for their contributions towards keeping Singapore safe and secure.
One challenge the team faced in tracking the molester was that he had managed to evade detection over a long period.
He would stick masking tape on his fingers to avoid leaving fingerprints at the crime scene and on his victims. He would also park his motorcycle on footpaths so he could make a quick getaway after committing his offences.
DSP (2) Low said: “He would park sufficiently far away from the crime scene and avoid the closed-circuit television cameras in the area.
“He brought extra clothes he could change into so the victim would be unable to recognise him or describe him to the authorities.”
The team interviewed the victims as well as Hougang and Sengkang residents to identify the locations the molester frequented. Eighty other officers from various neighbourhood police posts also helped to solve the case.
Describing the case as his most memorable experience, DSP (2) Low, a father of three children aged six to 15, said: “I was very happy and relieved when we finally caught him. This is the reason why I joined the Singapore Police Force – to serve and protect.”