She was just five years old but that did not stop him from sexually abusing her.
The incident allegedly traumatised the girl so much that she became easily agitated and anxious, and began to binge-eat.
Yesterday, Mohamad Awang, 45, a petrol pump attendant, was jailed for 15 months for molesting the victim - whom District Judge Matthew Joseph said was the youngest the court has seen.
Court papers said Mohamad was living with his older sister's family and mother in a Housing Board flat in the north-eastern part of Singapore last year.
His older sister was then working as a babysitter and had been caring for the girl, who cannot be named due to a gag order, for three years.
On June 2 last year, Mohamad's sister left to visit a relative but she instructed her daughter to look after the girl before going out.
Mohamad was also at home.
At about 12.40pm, Mohamad, his niece and the girl were watching television in the living room when his niece fell asleep.
Shortly after, Mohamad went into his room, sat on his bed and called the girl in. She obeyed.
He made her sit beside him before molesting her.
After about 10 minutes, Mohamad's niece woke up and realised the girl was not in the living room.
She called out for the girl, who immediately ran out of the bedroom.
After being asked, the girl told Mohamad's niece what happened, who shared the news with her mother and the girl's mother.
The girl's mother noticed a marked change in the girl's behaviour.
Court papers said the girl, who was usually well-behaved, began to throw tantrums, showed a high level of anxiety and started binge-eating.
This prompted the girl's mother to make a police report.
Yesterday, defence counsel Troy Yeo said in mitigation that his client was remorseful and diagnosed with mid-intellectual disability.
Mr Yeo also said Mohamad's family is helping to reform the accused including ensuring that children are not left alone with him.
District Judge Matthew Joseph said this was a very serious case and told Mohamad he should consider himself fortunate to escape caning.
A second charge of molest was taken into consideration for sentencing.
This article was first published on March 18, 2016.
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