Man jailed for shoving son’s alleged bully
Adjunct teacher fractures rib of 10-year-old boy
Upset that his son had been bullied for almost half a year, the man shoved the alleged bully against a wall, fracturing his rib.
Tan Chin Tai, 43, who is a registered adjunct teacher with the Ministry of Education, was yesterday jailed for seven weeks for hurting his son's classmate.
The boys and their school cannot be named due to a gag order on identifying the victim.
On July 7, 2017, Tan went to pick his then 10-year-old son from school in the afternoon when he spotted the victim, who was also 10.
He approached the victim and grabbed his bag handle, causing the boy to stumble backwards.
He then grabbed his left chest and pushed him to a nearby rubbish shed.
Tan pushed him onto the wall, scolding him.
He said: "Just because you are bigger in size, you can bully others... since you can bully my son, I can bully you."
The boy felt pain in his left chest after and made a police report at about 8.30pm that evening.
After making the report, he went to the hospital at about 9.30pm and was found to have a small fracture on his left rib. He was discharged about two hours later.
Deputy Public Prosecutor Tan Wei Ming asked for a sentence of at least eight weeks' jail, saying it was a case of an adult not being an adult, and had instead attacked a child.
In mitigation, Tan's lawyer Cory Wong said Tan's actions were a result of his son being bullied for a long time.
The victim was alleged to have started targeting Tan's son since early 2017, verbally abusing him, pushing him and taunting him to fight back.
He would also allegedly threaten to beat up the other children who talked to the boy.
Mr Wong said: "My client's actions were in the spur of the moment, he didn't have the intention to find the victim in the first instance."
He said Tan had raised the bullying issue with the school but was told the alleged bully had anger management issues and felt his concerns were brushed aside.
Tan and his wife had thought about transferring their son to another school because of the bullying.
Mr Wong also said that the alleged bullying had continued after the incident, with the boy allegedly telling Tan's son that his father deserved to "go to jail and be caned 1,000 times" and that playing with the boy would "cause them to be fractured" by Tan.
But the DPP said it was in essence a case of an adult hurting a vulnerable victim, and Tan should not have taken justice into his own hands.
During sentencing, District Judge Christopher Tan said bullying was a frequent occurrence and did not warrant Tan's actions.
Tan was convicted on the charge of voluntarily causing hurt yesterday.
For the offence, he could have been jailed for up to two years, or fined up to $5,000, or both.