Ex-police NSF who entered female toilet and aimed phone at policewoman showering sentenced to jail

Shaffiq Alkhatib
The Straits Times
April 13, 2023

A former full-time national serviceman (NSF) with the Singapore Police Force (SPF) was sentenced to 10 weeks’ jail on Thursday for criminal trespass and insulting a policewoman’s modesty.

District Judge Brenda Tan had earlier convicted Jonathan Chua Wei Cong, 26, of the offences after a trial.

Details about the policewoman, then 30, and the unit cannot be disclosed due to a gag order to protect her identity.

In earlier proceedings, Deputy Public Prosecutor Tan Zhi Hao said that Chua and two male course mates had ended their lessons at the unit sometime after 4.30pm on March 12, 2019.

The trio then made their way to a male toilet, passing by the female restroom along the way.

According to the two course mates, they left the male toilet first, and Chua caught up with them 30 seconds to three minutes later.

“The accused was left alone and unattended during this period of time,” said DPP Tan.

During the trial, the victim testified that she had gone to take a shower at around 4.45pm and that she heard the main toilet door open about 10 minutes later.

DPP Tan said: “About five to 10 seconds later, she turned to face the... cubicle door and saw a mobile phone appearing in an upward motion from the top right-hand side of the said door.

“The victim froze initially before she reacted by shouting ‘Oi’ loudly. She saw the phone move downwards, disappearing from her sight. She heard the main toilet door widen before she heard the said door close.”

The prosecutor told the court that the policewoman took less than five minutes to dry herself and get dressed before she left the shower cubicle.

She did not see the intruder as the person had fled by then.

The policewoman reported the incident to her superiors and provided a description of the mobile phone that she saw. She lodged a police report that evening.

DPP Tan said: “While on the stand, the victim stated that when she saw the phone pointed at her, she ‘blanked out’ and felt ‘humiliated’... She broke down and started sobbing when she was asked to recall how she felt.”

On Thursday, DPP Tan urged the court to sentence Chua to between 10 and 12 weeks’ jail, stressing that the victim had suffered trauma following the incident.

He also said that Chua had committed the offences when he was a member of the SPF, and that he “must be held to a higher standard”. Chua had also shown a lack of remorse, said the DPP.

Defence lawyer Josephine Costan, however, asked the judge to call for a report to assess her client’s suitability for a probation.

She said that there was no video recording of the policewoman and that Chua had not been charged with attempting to record the officer’s images.

Before handing down the sentence on Thursday, Judge Tan said that probation was not a viable option.

She also noted that the mobile phone had recording capability and this was indicative of Chua’s intent to make a record of the victim. Omission to make such a recording was not a mitigating factor, said Judge Tan.

Chua was offered bail of $15,000, and he intends to appeal against his conviction and sentence.

The Straits Times

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