Chua Kok Wan, who was driving his car, hit an e-scooter rider at a zebra crossing, but the rider died of a head injury a week later. Chua claimed that he had checked the road properly, but the evidence showed otherwise, and yesterday, Chua was given three weeks of jail time. He was also prohibited from driving all classes of vehicles for the next four years.
Last month, Chua was found guilty of causing the death of 37-year-old e-scooter rider Goh Yu Chiun through negligence in driving.
Forty-eight-year-old Chua testified during the trial that he was driving on Thomson Road from his house to a church meeting at around 8PM on August 2, 2017. When he approached a slip road into Norfolk Road, he said he slowed down at the bend. He testified that he was driving at about 20kmh to 30kmh.
Chua related that Goh suddenly showed up in front of him, riding an e-scooter. Chua slammed on the brakes immediately, but he said that it was too late and he hit the rider. Chua said that he called both the police and an ambulance. Goh was taken to Tan Tock Seng Hospital, where he was pronounced dead seven days later, on August 9, 2017.
But video evidence from Chua’s in-car camera proved that he was driving towards the zebra crossing without slowing down to stop, even though he had testified that he had done so.
“As he turned into the slip road, he claimed that he checked that there was no one at the zebra crossing or at both ends of the crossing, or approaching the crossing. He then proceeded forward,” Deputy Public Prosecutor Lim Jian Yi said in his submissions.
“The defence attempted to suggest that he was travelling at about 20kmh to 30kmh at this time, but this is pure speculation. The accused’s actual speed is unclear. It is accepted that he was not travelling at a high speed,” said Lim.
Chua also tried to place the blame on the lighting along Thomson Road, which he claimed was “varied”. According to him, the slip road was even less well-lit.
Again, the evidence did not support Chua’s claims.
“Contrary to the accused’s assertions, the lighting conditions in the slip road were even brighter than along Thomson Road,” Lim said to presiding District Judge Kan Shuk Weng.
The in-car camera had more evidence to produce – Chua’s car was “close enough” to the zebra crossing that Goh, who was in a white shirt and dark shorts and riding an e-scooter with a bright white headlight, would have been easy to for anyone to see if they were keeping a proper lookout.
Chua was given a three weeks jail sentence for causing the death of Goh through negligent driving. Chua, who is represented by lawyers Desmond Tan and Daryl Tay, has announced his intentions of appealing against his conviction and sentence. He is currently out on bail for $20,000.
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