Sembawang stand-off: Neighbours say couple quarrelled often

UPDATE:

After a 17-hour stand-off with the police, a 39-year-old man was arrested for wrongful confinement and suspected drug related offences.

The boy's mother was also arrested for suspected drug related offences.

At around noon today (Sept 28) Police Special Operations Command officers broke into the flat. The New Paper understands that officers broke a window and climbed through to enter the flat.

The man was arrested and taken away in a police car.

The boy was unharmed throughout and paramedics are now assessing his condition.

TNP understands that the police are working with the Ministry of Social and Family Development for the well-being of the child.

There were more than 100 officers from the police and the Singapore Civil Defence Force at the scene.

Sembawang MP Dr Lim Wee Kiak said that the boy was the youngest of four children.

His mother who is a widow has three older children at their grandmother's place in Woodlands.

UPDATE:

The police said that at about 6.44pm on Tuesday (Sept 27), they received a call saying that a 39-year-old man had locked himself and a 2-year-old boy at a unit at Blk 462 Sembawang Drive.

The man refused to open the door to police. Preliminary investigations revealed that the man had locked himself in the house with the boy following a dispute with the boy’s family members.

Officers from Ang Mo Kio Division, Crisis Negotiation Unit and Special Operations Command are managing the incident.

As at 6.45am today (Sept 28), negotiations are still ongoing.

Members of the public are advised to stay outside the police cordon set up and comply with instructions of police officers at scene.

Sembawang stand-off: Neighbours say couple quarrelled often

A man in his 30s locked his girlfriend out of their fifth-storey flat around 6pm yesterday, and barricaded himself inside with her two-year-old son.

What followed was a stand-off with the police when he resisted all attempts to let the officers in.

At press time at 1.30am, the drama at the two-room rental flat in Block 642, Sembawang Drive, had yet to reach a conclusion as the authorities continued to negotiate with the man to surrender.

Several members of the Singapore Civil Defence Force (SCDF) Disaster Assistance and Rescue Team (Dart) and the police Special Operations Command team and the elite Special Tactics and Rescue (Star) team could be seen outside the flat.

Several police cars, a police special operations command vehicle, a fire engine and an ambulance were at the scene. The block had also been cordoned off.

(Above) Teams from the police and SCDF were at the scene. Photo: The New Paper

The New Paper observed the man, who was wearing a white shirt, pacing inside the flat as the authorities outside tried to coax him into opening the door.

But the boy could not be seen.

The SCDF set up an inflatable lifepack below the flat as a precautionary measure in case of any fall or jump from height.

Its Dart personnel could be been setting up rappelling equipment on the sixth and seventh storeys in case they needed to break into the flat. Nets were also set up at the storey below the man's flat.

A resident in her 30s, who wanted to be known only as Naz, was visiting her sister on the seventh storey when she saw SCDF officers outside.

"I was worried that something happened to my sister but it turns out that they wanted to use her flat to rappel downstairs."

More than 30 residents of the 20-storey block gathered outside their flats to observe the situation.

According to neighbours, the man had moved into the flat with his girlfriend and her son a few months ago.

They said they had heard the couple quarrelling frequently.

Last night, they saw the girlfriend knocking furiously on the door asking to be let in before the police were called.

This woman at the scene is believed to be the girlfriend. Photo: The New Paper

A resident living on the same storey, who wanted to be known only as Jason, 35, said the block has had other cases of trouble.

Jason, who works in the IT industry, said: "The block is like a kampung. We can hear everything clearly and there is a lot of noise pollution."

Jason, whose child is around the same age as the boy, added: "Why did he get the child involved? I can't sleep tonight unless I know the child is safe."

The police said a report had been made about the incident, and investigations are ongoing.

360-photo of the scene


This article was first published on September 28, 2016.
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