In a display of youthful recklessness, a 17-year-old boy has been apprehended for throwing a brick and a glass bottle into the Istana compound. The incident occurred on separate occasions, resulting in charges being filed against the teenager.
The defendant, who cannot be named under the Child and Young Persons Act, pleaded guilty to one charge of acting rashly to endanger the personal safety of others, with an additional similar charge taken into consideration.
As per reports, the teenager’s actions have caused concern among authorities, prompting District Judge Kessler Soh Boon Leng to call for reports to evaluate the teen’s suitability for probation and a mandatory treatment order. The court’s decision regarding his sentencing is scheduled to be announced on July 18.
Under normal circumstances, probation is often granted to first-time offenders between the ages of 16 and 21. This alternative sentencing approach does not result in a permanent criminal record and enables young offenders to continue their education or employment while serving their sentences.
On the other hand, a mandatory treatment order is a community sentencing option typically offered to individuals who suffer from mental conditions that contribute to their criminal behavior.
BRICK & GLASS BOTTLE
The series of events leading to the teenager’s arrest began on May 18 when he threw a brick towards the Istana compound. While it remains unclear if any action was taken against him following the incident, court documents revealed that the teen felt the subsequent arrest was unjustified, according to the report.
He claimed that he had not intended for the brick to land within the protected premises of the Istana.
In response to his perceived injustice, the teenager decided to display his displeasure by throwing a glass bottle into the Istana compound on May 25. Wearing a blue T-shirt with a grey T-shirt underneath, he carried a glass bottle of fermented beancurd that he had purchased a few days earlier. At 2:09 pm, he hurled the bottle over the Istana compound wall, causing it to shatter upon impact with the walkway inside the premises.
The defendant, aware that his actions were recorded by the Istana’s surveillance cameras, promptly changed into his grey T-shirt to avoid detection. A Certis Cisco officer, Tan Soon Hai, monitoring the surveillance feed witnessed the incident and reported it to Mr. Tan Aik Siong, the deputy commanding officer of the Istana Security Unit. Mr. Tan then directed his team to alert the police.
During the court hearing, when asked if he had anything to say in his defense, the teenager, who was unrepresented by a lawyer, simply replied, “I have nothing to say.” Since May 27, he has remained in remand pending the finalization of his sentencing.
The offense of acting rashly to endanger the personal safety of others carries penalties of up to six months’ imprisonment, a fine of up to S$2,500, or both.
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