Security officer admits to causing grievous hurt to colleague who died after assault

SINGAPORE - In a span of two hours, a security officer punched a co-worker six times after accusing him of defecating near their workplace and failing to repay a loan, a district court heard.

Mr Jasvinder Singh, 49, collapsed and lay motionless on the floor after the last punch by Joshua Thomas, 35.

It happened late in the night between Nov 16 and Nov 17, 2016, at a security post of a worksite in Tuas South Boulevard.

When Thomas could not wake him up, he took the money he had given Mr Singh and checked into a Geylang hotel with a Thai prostitute.

He was arrested the same evening.

Originally accused of murder, Thomas, a Malaysian, was convicted on Friday (Nov 17) of causing grievous hurt to Mr Singh, a fellow Malaysian.

He admitted to punching him repeatedly in the face and pushing him forcefully to the ground, causing him to suffer facial fractures and a fracture-dislocation of the cervical spine leading to his death.

Deputy Public Prosecutor Bhajanvir Singh said the two men slept at the security post, which was not allowed by their employer.

Mr Singh had no bank account in Singapore and would get his salary from Thomas, whose bank account he used for the crediting of his pay.

On Nov 16, the two men had dinner and drank brandy at their security post. Thomas handed some money to Mr Singh and another security officer joined them.

At about 11pm, Thomas accused Mr Singh of defecating around the security post instead of in the toilet. Initially, he denied it but later admitted and apologised to Thomas.

An angry Thomas punched him twice in the face until his turban came off. He subsequently hit him another three times before giving him a forceful punch in the face at 1am.

The third security officer tried but failed to stop Thomas.

Mr Singh, who had remained seated throughout and did not retaliate, fell to the ground, said DPP Singh.

When he tried to get up, Thomas pushed him down. He died from from a broken spine.

The case was adjourned to Jan 4 for Thomas' lawyer Melvin Loh to give the mitigation plea.

If found guilty, he can be jailed for up to 10 years, fined or caned.