Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Please advise women how to deal with MRT perverts
ST (online) Forum Letter

ON JAN 20 at about 7.55pm, my wife took a train from Bugis MRT station heading towards Jurong East MRT interchange.

A middle-aged man boarded the crowded train in one of the stations along the way and stood in front of her.

The zipper of the shorts he was wearing was down. He was moving his folded umbrella around his 'private parts' to attract the attention of passengers seated nearby.

He also stood in a way that enhanced the opening in his shorts.

My wife was embarrassed by the action of the man and did not know what to do. The train was also crowded and it was inconvenient for her to vacate her seat.

For the sake of women passengers, could the MRT authorities advise them on how to deal with such a situation?

Nelson Quah

Dear Nelson,

Your wife should commit to memory as many details about the pervert as she can: dress (or undress, as the case may be), accessories, facial features, identifying marks, etc.

She should alight at the next immediate MRT station and inform the MRT staff about her inconsiderate fellow passenger, give his description, and if possible, which car she last saw him in. MRT staff will board the train at the following station, apprehend whomever fits the description and confine him until your wife can make a proper identification.

If your wife positively identifies the suspect, the MRT staff will arrange for her to make a police report, following which the police will investigate the matter by interviewing both her and the suspect separately. Your wife may face more than 1 interview if the suspect claims trial.

At the trial a few weeks later, if your wife maintains an unwavering testimony and the judge finds the defendant's protestations lack credibility, the defendant may receive a fine, or get his butt thrown in jail, or both.

This is the end of the story as far as the Authorities are concerned. [True story, btw. The perv's MO looks exactly like that of the guy Mrs X threw in jail when she faced the exact same situation not too long ago. Maybe he hasn't yet learned his lesson?]

Or, your wife could just politely tell the guy that his fly is down, putting the onus back on him to zip up. Depends on how brave she is, and how much time she has to waste with the Authorities to assuage her embarrassment.

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