Delivery rider fined for fighting pedestrian, not wearing mask and flouting safe distancing rules
SINGAPORE: Thinking that a pedestrian had insulted him as he rode by on his electric bicycle, a delivery rider alighted, removed his mask and tried to punch the man.
However, he missed and struck the man's pregnant wife instead.
Gareth Tan Chin Wei, 32, was fined S$4,000 on Wednesday (Sep 16) for one count of causing hurt by a rash act, failing to wear a mask properly and failing to keep a 1m distance from others.
An additional two charges were taken into consideration.
The court heard that Tan started his day making deliveries in Serangoon on his licensed electric bicycle at 10am on Apr 24 this year.
At around midnight, he was riding home on his e-bike along a pavement outside NEX mall when he encountered the victims, a 34-year-old Romanian man and his 35-year-old Venezuelan wife.
The man glanced at Tan because he thought the way Tan was riding was dangerous, the court heard.
Looking back at the couple, Tan sensed that the man was insulting him and grew angry. He turned around, rode ahead of the couple and parked his e-bike.
He then removed his mask and attempted to hit the man, failing to keep a metre's distance, said the prosecutor.
The man dodged Tan's swings, which struck the victim's wife on the face. She sustained a scratch above her lips.
Tan's colleague, who was nearby, rushed to stop the fight and a security guard at the nearby mall called the police.
Deputy Public Prosecutor Eugene Teh asked for a fine of at least S$5,000. He noted that Tan's breaches of the COVID-19 regulations were part of "a one-time outburst and were brief in nature".
Tan also had his mask on at all times just before the fight, said Mr Teh.
For a rash act endangering the personal safety of others, he could have been jailed for up to a year, fined up to S$5,000 or both.
For failing to wear a mask properly, he could have been jailed for up to six months, fined up to S$10,000 or both. The penalties are the same for failing to keep a metre's distance from another individual, under the COVID-19 laws.