SINGAPORE: 24-year-old Khoo Wei Yang, a Singapore permanent resident from Malaysia, has been sentenced to five months in jail for using criminal force to outrage the modesty of an 11-year-old girl in a lift.
The girl’s identity is protected by a court order.
The unsettling event unfolded on July 7 last year, when the young girl was on her way home from school.
She found herself sharing the elevator with Khoo, who pressed a different floor button from his actual residence.
The girl pressed the button for the sixth floor, while Khoo chose to press the button for the eighth floor even though he lived on the second floor.
Inside the elevator, Khoo then exposed his private part and proceeded to inappropriately touch himself, leaving the girl terrified.
The girl was able to see what he was doing from the reflection of the glass panel in the lift, and tried to avoid witnessing this disturbing act by looking down.
What followed was even more distressing, as Khoo touched the girl’s left elbow with his exposed private part, paralyzing her with fear.
Not being able to move because she was too scared, she stayed still as Khoo continued rubbing her elbow with his private part.
When they reached the sixth floor, the girl exited the lift, and Khoo followed, attempting to engage her in conversation by falsely claiming she had dropped something on the floor.
The girl realized this was a ruse and walked away, only to discover that Khoo was following her at a distance.
Realizing that she had seen him, Khoo then walked away towards the lift.
Incident left victim traumatized
The incident left the girl traumatized, to the extent that she refrained from leaving her home for several days and required an escort when using the elevator.
On the night of the same day, the girl’s father accompanied her to a police station to report the incident, leading to Khoo’s subsequent arrest.
During the investigation, Khoo confessed to his inappropriate actions, attributing them to uncontrollable “urges.”
Deputy Public Prosecutor Quek Lu Yi argued that Khoo had exploited the girl’s vulnerability, causing her considerable distress.
She highlighted that Khoo’s actions were a form of sexual exploitation as he had touched the victim skin-on-skin with his exposed private part while in an enclosed space, where the girl had no one to turn to for help.
For his crime, Khoo could have faced a maximum penalty of five years in jail, fines, caning, or a combination of these punishments.
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