Security officer lauded for stopping woman who threatened to jump from IMM carpark

Assistant Commissioner of Police Jarrod Pereira (centre) with Community Partnership Award recipients (from left) Mr Ong Kok Keong, Ms Sitti Nahida, Mr S Anpallagan, Mr Tan Eng Hai, Madam Chan Mee Lian and Mr Foo Kong Soon Sam.
Assistant Commissioner of Police Jarrod Pereira (centre) with Community Partnership Award recipients (from left) Mr Ong Kok Keong, Ms Sitti Nahida, Mr S Anpallagan, Mr Tan Eng Hai, Madam Chan Mee Lian and Mr Foo Kong Soon Sam.PHOTO: SINGAPORE POLICE FORCE

SINGAPORE - A young woman was seated on the ledge on the sixth floor of the IMM building carpark, crying and threatening to jump.

Faced with such a situation for the first time, the security officer on duty, Mr Foo Kong Soon, drew on his experiences as a parent of three adult children to console the woman, sharing how he would feel if one of his daughters attempted to take her own life.

After 10 tense minutes, Mr Foo was able to gain the woman's trust and approach close enough to pull her down the ledge.

The security officer was worried, but told himself to "be calm and do the right thing". Mr Foo, who has held the post since 2016, added: "In the security line, it is our job to safeguard the well-being of others."

For his role in averting a potential tragedy on March 16, the 55-year-old was awarded a Community Partnership Award on Tuesday (May 14) alongside his colleague, Mr Katiravan Subrayam, who alerted the building management to the situation.

The award is presented to organisations whose staff provide valuable assistance to the police.

Mr Ong Kok Keong, a security officer with Terusan Recreation Centre, Mr Tan Eng Hai, a security supervisor with Cassia @ Penjuru dormitory, and operations executives from PSA Singapore also received the award during a ceremony held at Clementi Police Division headquarters, while two members of the public were presented with Public Spiritedness Awards.

One of them, Ms Sitti Nahida, was fetching nursing home residents at a carpark in Commonwealth Drive when she spotted a barefooted man in his mid-20s loitering near the cars.

The 49-year-old senior care associate at Jamiyah Nursing Home recalled observing the man use a shiny object to scratch at the windows of several cars.

Sensing something was wrong, she alerted the police and provided a description of the man that led to his arrest for attempted theft.

"As a Singapore citizen, I felt that I should report these things rather than just ignoring it," Ms Nahida said.

Fellow recipient Chan Mee Lian, an OCBC Bank service officer, showed similar initiative when she prevented a customer from losing $32,500 to an online scam. Ms Chan, 43, felt something was wrong when the 60-year-old woman asked to make some puzzling transactions and advised her to talk to family members.

Assistant Commissioner of Police Jarrod Pereira, who is Commander of Clementi Police Division, praised the award recipients' "commendable acts of kindness, valour and public spiritedness".

He noted that "these exemplary citizens did not turn a blind eye to wrongdoings occurring right before them, but instead, stepped up to make a difference".