Singapore

Shirtless cabby jailed for assaulting motorist

A taxi driver took his shirt off and slapped, punched and kicked a motorist for refusing to take up his challenge to a fight, a court heard.

Johari Suhaimi, 35, was jailed six weeks yesterday for road rage.

He admitted to hurting GrabCar driver Teng Moh Seh, 58, on Marina Boulevard outside Marina Bay Financial Centre Tower 1 at about 8pm last Dec 11.

Assistant Public Prosecutor (APP) Dillon Kok said Mr Teng was driving along Marina Boulevard when Johari cut into his lane just as Mr Teng approached the entrance of the building. He applied emergency brakes and honked at Johari.

The two men exchanged words and agreed to talk further outside the building.

After stopping his taxi, Johari went to Mr Teng and asked him to get out of the car. He shouted at Mr Teng who tried to explain to the cabby that his driving was dangerous.

Johari also hurled vulgarities at Mr Teng. Johari then used his chest to bump the victim, causing him to stagger backwards.

APP Kok said: "The accused tried to goad the victim into punching him. However, the victim did not react to this."

FIGHT

Johari challenged Mr Teng to go to Central Boulevard for a fight. When he refused, Johari decided to fight on the spot.

He slapped Mr Teng on the cheek.

Johari then took his shirt off and punched Mr Teng twice in the abdomen and kicked him.

Mr Teng keeled over in pain, but Johari continued taunting him.

Johari took a photo of the car's registration number and called the police, saying Mr Teng had confronted him and grabbed his neck.

APP Kok said it was fortuitous the exchange was captured on camera - it saved Mr Teng from being wrongly accused of confronting and grabbing Johari.

Defence lawyer Gino Hardial Singh said his client was under tremendous amount of financial stress at the time. His mother was receiving treatment for a stroke she had three years earlier and his wife was then expecting their second child.

Johari, who has unrelated convictions for drug consumption, theft, burglary and forgery, could have been jailed up to two years and or fined up to $5,000 for voluntarily causing hurt.

- The Straits Times.

courttaxiassaultroad rage