Man arrested for alleged sickle attack on enforcement officer
One of them slashed on arms and legs just after they issued smoking fine at void deck of Sembawang block
Two Certis enforcement officers were injured in an alleged attack by a man armed with a sickle in Sembawang on Monday evening.
One of them had slash wounds on his arms and legs, while the other was allegedly punched in the face, the police said yesterday.
The officers, attached to the National Environment Agency (NEA), were on enforcement duty against public health offences, such as littering and smoking, when the incident occurred at the void deck of a block of flats in the Canberra Link area, Certis and NEA said in a joint statement.
Minister for Sustainability and the Environment Grace Fu said in a Facebook post yesterday that the officers were attacked after issuing a fine for a smoking offence.
"The attacker was a third party who was present but not implicated in the smoking enforcement action," Certis and NEA said.
The alleged assailant fled before the police arrived.
The officers were conscious when taken to Khoo Teck Puat Hospital. One was treated as an outpatient while his colleague was in stable condition and recovering in hospital yesterday, said Certis and NEA.
The police said officers from Woodlands Police Division arrested a 30-year-old male suspect within seven hours of the incident after identifying him with the aid of images from police cameras and the two officers' body-worn cameras.
They also seized a bloodstained sickle, believed to be the attack weapon, which was found near the scene.
Some residents in the area told The New Paper they heard screams at about 7.30pm on Monday. A domestic helper who wanted to be known only as Jealou said: "When I looked out, I saw a man lying on the road in pain. He looked like he had been hit by a car and was holding his leg and screaming."
A 25-year-old man, who declined to be named, said he noticed a "pool of blood" on the road after the injured man was taken away in an ambulance.
Police investigations are ongoing.
The suspect will be charged in court today with voluntarily causing hurt by dangerous weapon. If convicted, he can be jailed for up to seven years and/or fined.
The police said they have zero tolerance for brazen acts of violence that threaten the safety of public servants carrying out their duties, and they will not hesitate to take action against those who blatantly disregard the law.
Condemning the attack as "unprovoked" and "unacceptable", Certis and NEA said: "(We) have zero tolerance for any act of violence against our officers who work tirelessly to keep our environment clean and safe for the community. We will stand by our officers and render our full assistance to the police in their investigation."
In her Facebook post, Ms Fu said she was upset to learn of the alleged assault.
RIGHT TO SAFETY
"Our officers work hard to safeguard the well-being of Singaporeans. They deserve our respect, and the right to safety in discharging their duties.
"They must know that we've got their backs covered. I wish the officers a speedy recovery."
She also reminded the public this was not the time to ignore safe management measures and was concerned to see an increasing number of flagrant violations of the rules.
In May, Ahirrudin Al-Had Haji Arrifin, 61, was charged with attempted murder for allegedly stabbing a National Parks Board safe distancing enforcement officer at the Sungei Serangoon Park Connector.