You shouldn’t be touching people inappropriately and without permission.
If you don’t know what that is, it’s called molestation.
It’s quite well known that sometime back, a man from NUS, Terrence Siow, was accused of molesting a woman in September 2018.
However, many might remember that he was not jailed but put on probation due to his academic results showing he had the “potential to excel in life” on 25 September this year.
Which of course, led to massive outrage.
Because when tens of thousands of people sign a petition stating their unhappiness, an explanation is likely needed.
Now up online for the public to read, District Judge Jasvender Kaur explains why the 23-year-old victim had his punishment toned down.
It is good to note that agree or not that we should keep discussions civil.
According to Mothership, the following were some of the reasons brought to consideration.
Length Of Molestation And Circumstance
Personally, I think molestation should just be one standard category.
But I’m not the lawyer here.
Siow was guilty of using one finger to touch the victim’s buttocks over her shorts and was described as brief.
He was also accused of touching the victim’s outer side of the right thigh with the back of his left hand.
However, Deputy Public Prosecutor Deborah Lee stated that the victim “did not make a mental note of which part of the thigh was being touched”.
Kaur ruled it as a low case of sexual exploitation.
Next, she then suggested that the accusation of Siow intentionally following the victim was wrong.
He did, however, intended to alight at Serangoon MRT Station where the victim also alighted.
There was also no attempt to detain Siow after the victim supposedly reported the incident to a station officer.
Kaur noted that while it was an offence, there was no statement that the victim developed any sort of trauma.
Past Actions And Cooperation
Siow is not a first timer in committing the indecent act.
He admitted that he had previously touched other women in crowded buses or trains but was not caught.
This behaviour started when he entered university in August 2016.
I’m kind of upset someone like him was never caught, not going to lie.
Kaur clarified, however, that Siow can only be sentenced for the offence which he has pleaded guilty to and consented to be taken into consideration.
Which basically means he can’t be charged for all those other random times. Darn it.
During the investigation, Siow had pleaded guilty and cooperated throughout the process.
This led Kaur to be satisfied and felt that he was genuine about the case.
Potential For Reform
The point that got everyone angered and up in arms.
The same one where Kaur mentioned that his grades and past performance showed strong potential for reform.
In 2012 and 2013, Siow was studying in a junior college and his conduct was “excellent”.
In August 2016, he pursued a major in Mathematics in NUS and he also did 13 hours of volunteer work.
Again, personal thoughts that all of this shouldn’t be factors when considering a crime.
However, she did state that Siow was incredibly remorseful, came clean and apologised to the female victim and his own parents.
Finally, Kaur states that probation should not be seen as a soft option.
During probation of 21 months, Siow would have to perform 150 hours of community service.
He would also be subjected to a time curfew and attend offence-specific treatment programmes.
So what do you think about all of this? Do you feel Siow’s current punishment is justifiable or do you think a heavier one should’ve been imposed on him?
Regardless, it’s good to remember that above all, no one should take any liberties in committing any crime.
The stain on future records will never look good.
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