SINGAPORE — Four years after his wife took her life, a widower followed a woman whom he thought looked like her into a lift and grabbed her left buttock.
Sim Kah Hwee, 35, then fled the scene, but was arrested shortly after the victim made a police report.
Sim, a father of two, was sentenced to 10 days' jail on Thursday (25 November) after he pleaded guilty to one count of molest.
On 18 October 2019 at about 7.10pm, Sim ended work and had drinks with two colleagues. He consumed hard liquor and they finished their drinks at 11pm.
At the time of the incident, Sim's blood alcohol content was 45mg of ethanol per 100ml of blood. The legal limit for driving is 80mg per 100 ml.
Sim then took a Grab ride back to Tampines and proceeded to walk towards his mother’s house at Tampines Street 72. As he walked along a footpath, he noticed the victim, who resembled his late wife. He decided to follow her.
The victim was heading home. She entered a lift but Sim entered as the doors were closing. As the victim was squeezing past Sim to get out of the lift at her level, Sim grabbed her left buttock.
The victim turned around to scold Sim, and Sim tried to press the lift button to close the doors. The victim tried to grab Sim with both hands but was pushed aside.
Sim then fled using the stairs and went to his mother’s house. While the victim was disgusted, she was not injured.
Greatly affected by wife's suicide
In mitigation, Sim's lawyer S Balamurugan said that the death of his spouse had affected his client “greatly”. They had been married for five years and she bore him two children. "Unfortunately, she gave no indication at all that she had suicidal tendencies,” said Balamurugan.
His client turned to alcohol as a coping mechanism for his grief. He felt suicidal but decided to live for his daughters.
When Sim saw the victim, he only wanted to have a look at her, the lawyer stressed. “It is not a case where he would follow women who resemble his late wife because there was no such pattern, and this incident was the first time.”
On hindsight, Sim should have sought professional help, he added.
"However, he has since got a grip of himself and has quit drinking alcohol. He is a widower, who has promised to care for his young daughters."
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