Politics

Police investigating scuffle that broke out near Katong Square, Latest Singapore News



A man has been caught on video retrieving a pointed silver-coloured object from a car during a scuffle near shopping mall Katong Square on East Coast Road.

The incident, which also saw one man choking another, comes on the back of a string of recent violent incidents in public spaces involving bladed weapons like swords, knives and razor blades.

A video of the scuffle posted on Facebook on Tuesday morning (April 5) showed about eight men and two women on the road hitting and shoving each other, with a few trying to break up the exchange.

The police have confirmed that a report was lodged and are looking into the matter.

On March 14, a 37-year-old man armed with a sword was caught on video near Buangkok Square mall swinging the weapon and stopping oncoming traffic.

He was swinging it at a pedestrian before other members of the public restrained him until the police arrived and arrested him. The pedestrian was injured.

In another incident on March 23, a knife-wielding man refused to drop his weapon and continued advancing towards police officers.

Three Taser shots were fired at the 64-year-old, but he continued moving towards the officers.

As there was an imminent threat to the safety of the officers, one of them fired his pistol at the man, hitting him in the chest.

The man was taken to hospital and later pronounced dead.

The recent spate of cases was raised in Parliament on Monday.

Addressing concerns about public safety, Minister of State for Home Affairs Desmond Tan said that the number of knife-related crimes involving murder, robbery, rioting and serious hurt has remained relatively constantin recent years.

He added that it has been averaging about 150 annually for the past five years.

Mr Tan was responding to questions by Mr Zhulkarnain Abdul Rahim, who had asked about measures to protect the public in the light of recent crimes.

He said for urgent incidents, including those involving dangerous weapons, police are generally able to respond within 15 minutes of the call.

Mr Zhulkarnain (Chua Chu Kang GRC) also asked if there could be a blanket ban on carrying a knife, razor or other sharp objects in any school, public or commercial premises.

Mr Tan said the Ministry of Home Affairs currently regulates six items under the Arms and Explosives Act.

These are swords, spears, spearheads, daggers, bayonets and dangerous bows and arrows.

This list will be expanded to include items like knuckledusters and flick knives when the Guns, Explosives and Weapons Control Act replaces the Act later this year.

Regulated items will be subject to greater control, including the regulation of sales on e-commerce platforms, added Mr Tan.

He also addressed the fatal shooting of the knife-wielding man last month.

Mr Tan said that when a person refuses to comply with the police’s instructions and poses a threat to the lives of those around him, including the officers, police personnel may use lethal force.





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