Singapore judge blames victim

In a country infamous for its chewing gum ban, driver Cleopatra Wong Yuin Ping gets off relatively scot free after she ran over a man on a bike.

Cleopatra was driving her dad’s Lexus ES300 when she hit cyclist Muhammad Asri Aris. Although the 19 year old man was flung into Cleo’s windshield, Cleo kept going, claiming she thought Muhammad was a tree branch. She says she had no idea she hit a cyclist in spite of the clamor and sparks from the remains of Mr Aris’s bike jammed underneath the car. Aris was hospitalized for two days with a fractured shoulder, cuts and abrasions and was off of work for a month recovering from his injuries.

When Wong got home that fateful early morning, she saw the dented bumper on her dad’s Lexus but “felt no urgency to report the incident and went to bed,” according to this Asia One news report.

Unlike a certain Colorado attorney, Prosecutor Christopher Ong argued for jail time for Mrs Wong. The judge, however, dismissed the prosecutor’s recommendation and fined the driver SG$800 instead (about US$600).

Among the mitigating factors cited by the judge? “It was apparent the cyclist unfortunately cycled in the middle of the road without appreciating the risks he was taking against all the lurking dangers he could encounter,” she writes in her decision. Thanks for blaming the victim, Judge Salina Ishak.

One comment

  • A b
    November 27, 2010 - 3:39 pm | Permalink

    New Lexus advert? “ES300 – you won’t notice the difference between Muhammad and a tree branch!”

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