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The Straits Times
July 24, 2023
The owner of a pet peacock that attacked a three-year-old in 2021 has been issued a stern warning by the police.
Responding to queries from The Straits Times, the police said that in consultation with the Attorney-General’s Chambers, they warned a 59-year-old man on July 3 for an offence of negligence concerning his pet peacock.
“The man has since given his peacock away and had earlier paid compensation to the victim’s family,” they added.
The current whereabouts of the peacock is not known.
Stern warnings do not amount to criminal convictions or a criminal record, but records of warnings are maintained by the police. Should those issued a warning re-offend or commit other criminal offences, they may be charged in court.
On Nov 28, 2021, the girl, her brother and father were walking home from a playground at Haus Park in Serangoon Garden. She stopped outside a house to look at the peacock, her mother, Ms Kris Chan, wrote in a Facebook post then.
The peacock, which neighbours estimated to be about 2m long, is said to have charged out and attacked the girl.
She suffered several cuts on her face and had to be put under general anaesthesia in order for the wound to be stitched up, said Ms Chan, 46.
The housewife also posted four pictures of the cuts on her daughter’s face, as well as her blood-stained clothes.
The owner of the pet peacock is believed to have moved out from the Serangoon Garden house since the incident.
Without disclosing the amount the peacock owner paid in settlement, Ms Chan told ST on Monday that her family had to file a civil suit against the owner, for him to pay for their daughter’s medical fees.
Ms Chan said that since the attack, her daughter, now five, has a fear of all animals, including dogs, cats and chickens. She declined to name her daughter.
Whenever the family visit friends who have dogs at home, Ms Chan said the dogs have to be muzzled and kept in a separate room.
“She’s gradually getting better. We finally started going to the zoo again only this year,” added Ms Chan.
For being negligent with his peacock in guarding against any probable danger to human life, or any probable danger of grievous hurt, the owner could have been jailed for up to a year, fined up to $5,000, or both for a first offence.