A woman who attended her friend’s birthday party last year offered his girlfriend a lift home, a court heard.
But the celebration ended in tragedy when the 23-year-old passenger Jasmine Lim Jia Yan died in a traffic accident, which was caused by the driver’s negligence.
At the State Courts on Thursday (14 March), the 25-year-old motorist Honami Lam Qixin pleaded guilty to causing death by a negligent act not amounting to culpable homicide.
The project manager, who failed to keep a proper lookout for traffic while making a right turn at a junction, is expected to be sentenced on 29 March. She is out on $10,000 bail.
The offence carries a maximum penalty of up to two years’ jail along with a fine. The prosecution is seeking a four-week jail term.
On 21 April last year, Lam and her boyfriend Jake Lau Zhi Wei, 26, attended their friend’s birthday party at Pine Grove condominium in Clementi.
After the party ended, Lam offered to send Lim, the birthday boy’s girlfriend, home in her car.
Lau sat in the front passenger seat while Lim, an assistant brand manager for SK-II, sat in the left rear passenger seat of the car.
At around 1am on 22 April, Lam’s car reached the junction of Jalan Anak Bukit and Jalan Jurong Kechil and she stopped the car. She wanted to make a right turn towards the PIE, heading in the direction of Changi.
When the traffic lights turned green for vehicles travelling straight, along Jalan Anak Bukit, Lam moved the car forward.
But she didn’t stop the car in the turning pocket to wait for the road to clear, in favour of vehicles moving straight from the opposite direction along Jalan Anak Bukit towards Clementi Road.
At the time, a bus was moving at about 60kmh in the opposite direction along Jalan Anak Bukit towards Clementi Road, with the traffic light in his favour. When the bus driver saw Lam’s car encroaching into his path, he braked but could not avoid crashing into the left side of the car.
The impact of the collision caused Lam’s car to spin before it came to a stop. Lam got out of the car and called the police.
Lim died in hospital from head injuries six hours later.
Lam had bruises on her right hip and left knee. She was warded for two days and given 20 days of hospitalisation leave.
Deputy Public Prosecutor Wu Yu Jie urged District Judge Kessler Soh to sentence Lam to four weeks’ jail along with a five-year driving ban.
Lam’s lawyer, David Nayar, asked for a one week jail term and a two-year driving ban.
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