SINGAPORE — A polytechnic student was given a conditional warning for filming a girl in a toilet near a cafe but he went on to reoffend, this time in his school.
The 19-year-old student, who cannot be named as he was below 18 at the time of the offence, pleaded guilty to two counts of trespass and one count of insulting a girl’s modesty on Monday (8 February).
A probation report was called to assess his suitability for community-based sentencing. The boy will return to court on 5 April.
On 11 November 2018, the boy saw a young girl entering a female toilet behind the Starbucks cafe in Keat Hong Community Club, and decided to follow her. He intended to peep at her in the toilet, but lost his nerve while in a cubicle as he feared being caught.
He remained in the cubicle for another 15 minutes when a 17-year-old girl entered the toilet. She entered the cubicle adjacent to the one he was occupying.
The boy then turned on his mobile phone and placed it above the cubicle wall to film the girl, who discovered the act. She alerted the police several minutes later, stating that the perpetrator was in the toilet.
He was given a conditional warning over the offence. But on 22 October 2019, he reoffended.
The youth followed a female student into a toilet at his polytechnic and placed his jacket on the divider wall. He then turned on his phone’s camera and placed it above the cubicle wall, intending to photograph the 17-year-old girl.
The victim saw the phone while in a state of undress and, immediately dressed herself. She left the cubicle and waited for five to 10 minutes in the toilet but no one emerged.
She then waited outside the toilet and confronted the boy after he exited. The boy denied taking any photographs or videos of her and no such media was recovered from his phone.
In medical reports dated 12 November 2019, the teen was diagnosed with depression by an Institute of Mental Health consultant.
Another psychiatrist stated that the teen suffered from significant depression during the offences, and that it contributed significantly to his “loss of impulse control and negative risk taking behaviour” at the time of the offences.
In mitigation, the youth’s lawyer stated that his client has enrolled in another institution and was doing well in his studies now.
Criminal trespass carries a jail term of up to three months, or a maximum $1,500 fine, or both. Insulting the modesty of a woman carries a jail term of up to a year, or a fine, or both.
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