E-bike rider who caused jogger to suffer brain injuries jailed

Yahoo News Singapore file photo

SINGAPORE — It was his first time using an e-bike and the youth wanted to see how fast it could go.

But when Joven Heng Gin How, 20, tried to overtake a jogger outside Marina Bay Sands, he knocked him down, causing him to suffer brain injuries.

Heng, 20, was given a week’s detention on Tuesday (16 April), and ordered to serve 140 hours of community service. He pleaded guilty to one count of committing a rash act which caused hurt to Chua Kok Soon, 37.

One count of riding a power-assisted bicycle on a footpath – a breach of the Active Mobility Act – was taken into consideration for sentencing.

The facts of the case

On 9 June last year, Chua began a run with four other friends. Starting from about 4am, the group proceeded from East Coast Park to Marina Bay Sands (MBS).

On the same day, Heng was also at MBS when he met his friend Royce Lee Chin Kwee by coincidence. Lee had a power-assisted bicycle which he had brought to sell to a buyer.

Upon seeing the e-bike, Heng asked to ride it around the area and Lee agreed. While Heng was riding on the footpath outside The Shoppes, he encountered two joggers in front of him, one of whom was Chua.

Heng managed to overtake the first jogger safely, and was attempting to overtake Chua when Chua veered to the right. Heng tried to brake but was unable to stop in time.

The e-bike skidded and collided into Chua from behind, hitting his legs. This caused both men to fall to the ground.

Heng then helped Chua, gave him his contact number and left the scene before police and paramedics arrived. Chua’s friend called the police at about 5.57am.

Both Chua and Heng suffered injuries from the incident.

Heng had abrasions to his right knee and feet, while Chua was sent to the hospital. The latter was diagnosed with bleeding in the brain, scalp bruises, and abrasions to his limbs. His medical bills cost $493.56, which was covered by insurance.

Heng admitted to riding the e-bike at a high speed as he wanted to see how fast it could go. Heng, who represented himself, asked for leniency as he did not mean for the accident to happen.

Deputy Public Prosecutor Kelvin Chong sought a short detention order and community service for Heng.

“There is no doubt that the accused’s callousness affects public safety,” said DPP Chong.

“This incident occurred along a footpath in the wee hours of the morning. What one would

not expect is a PAB – or any vehicle for that matter – to be driven through such an

area. Users of this public space cannot be expected to be on guard and look out for

such vehicles.”