Yishun man gets probation for throwing, killing cat
A mentally disabled man who threw a cat to its death from the 13th storey of a Yishun HDB block was sentenced to 18 months' probation yesterday.
Lee Wai Leong, 41, had pleaded guilty to one count of animal abuse last month.
Court papers said that Lee, who is diagnosed with moderate intellectual disability, was annoyed with a stray adult male mackerel tabby domestic shorthair as he found it noisy and had entered his home before.
On Oct 30 last year, at about 10.30am, he went to the ground floor of his block and saw the cat.
He picked it up and took the lift to the 13th storey, where he threw the cat over the parapet.
Lee then took the lift back down to see if it had survived the fall.
A caller alerted the police to the dead cat, which was found to have suffered significant organ tissue bleeding and multi-organ failure.
Lee was arrested and charged with one count of causing unnecessary suffering to the cat under the Animals and Birds Act on Dec 29 last year.
Last month, defence lawyer Josephus Tan, who was assigned by the Criminal Legal Aid Scheme, said in mitigation that Lee has the estimated IQ of a 10-year-old or less, is unable to work and spends his day helping out with household chores and looking after his 14 pet fish.
He added that his client, who is facing only one charge, was not responsible for the other cat deaths in Yishun.
There have been at least 39 reported cat deaths in Yishun since September last year.
Yesterday, District Judge Matthew Joseph, in sentencing, noted Lee's lack of moral intelligence and intellectual disability, but said a single act of violence is one case too many.
Under the probation order, Lee will attend programmes specified by the probation officer and his parents will be bonded to ensure his good behaviour.
The maximum penalty for causing unnecessary suffering to an animal is a $15,000 fine and 18 months' jail.