Drama draws 100-strong crowd

SCDF's DART personnel rappelled down to pry open the kitchen window and enter the seventh storey unit where the 51-year-old man was in.
PHOTO: Shin Min

As she waited for her favourite Channel 8 drama to start at 9pm, she was interrupted by a real-life drama taking place at the block opposite.

An unusual sound distracted Madam Gan Mei Qi, 60, a cook, so she went to her kitchen window to investigate.

The sound was coming from a machine used to deploy an inflatable safety life air pack on the ground as Singapore Civil Defence Force (SCDF) officers were preparing to rappel into a flat.

"Peering down, I saw the SCDF personnel setting up their equipment," Madam Gan told The New Paper in Mandarin.

A 51-year-old man was later arrested for criminal intimidation at the seventh storey of Block 5, St George's Lane, at Kallang on Monday evening. TNP understands that the intimidation involved the man and his landlord.

Madam Gan, a resident at Block 8, recalled a similar incident last year when the SCDF's Disaster Assistance and Rescue Team (Dart) was also deployed and an inflatable safety life air pack was set up as well.

She said: "The last time it happened, I stayed by my window to watch, and there wasn't an ending to it because no one was arrested.

"So this time, I couldn't be bothered as much and just carried on doing my own things and only looked out of my kitchen window occasionally,"

Madam Gan saw three pairs of Dart personnel standing on ledges of the building. They were on standby at the sixth, eighth and ninth storeys.

Two Dart officers later rappelled from the ninth storey to the seventh storey and pried open the kitchen window, reported Shin Min Daily News.

HANDS BOUND

Madam Gan added that about 100 neighbours and passers-by gathered at the foot of her block to watch the incident.

The police spent about 15 minutes in the unit with the man before taking him to the ground floor with his hands bound, said Madam Gan.

A ninth-storey neighbour at Block 5, who wanted to be known only as Mr Low, 49, a carpenter, told TNP in Mandarin that Dart personnel knocked on his door, requesting to use his kitchen window so that they could be on standby.

"The SCDF personnel tied cables to my gate and set up their equipment in my flat.

"Two personnel rappelled downstairs and another one stood by my kitchen window." he said.

Mr Low added: "I also heard a "bam!", and it sounded like the house was broken into."

SCDF said it responded to a height rescue incident at St George's Lane at 7.29pm. A safety life air pack and safety ropes were deployed as a precautionary measure to prevent the man from attempting to jump.

A man was brought to safety.

Police said they received a call at 7.03pm requesting assistance.

Upon arrival, a case of criminal intimidation was established and a 51-year-old man was arrested.

Investigations are ongoing.


This article was first published on October 7, 2015.
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