SINGAPORE: A 17-year-old boy who helped his mother book shared cars rented a vehicle for himself using her account, but got into an accident with a parked car.
The teenager, now 18, pleaded guilty on Tuesday (Jan 4) to three traffic-related charges and a fourth charge of unauthorised computer access. A fifth charge will be considered in sentencing.
He cannot be named as he was under 18 at the time of the offences and is protected under the Children and Young Persons Act.
The court heard that the teen frequently helped his mother to book cars from car-sharing mobile application Tribecar.
He did not have his own Tribecar account as he was underage, but he knew his mother's login details.
In March last year, he changed the login ID to his own email, so that his mother would be unaware if he made any bookings.
At about 10.30pm on Apr 6 last year, he decided to book a car for a joy ride the next day. He booked a Honda Stream and retrieved the vehicle from a multi-storey car park in Jurong West the next morning.
After driving for about one-and-a-half hours, he entered a petrol station in Woodlands and tried to park the vehicle.
However, he failed to keep a proper lookout ahead and collided with a parked vehicle in front of him. He apologised to the driver of the vehicle and exchanged numbers with him, but could not be contacted afterwards.
When the teen's mother found out that her son had driven the car, she informed Tribecar and paid S$500 as compensation for the damage caused.
The prosecutor said the teenager has no previous convictions and did not object to the calling for a probation suitability report.
In mitigation, the teen said he regretted all the decisions he made throughout "these matters".
"I hope you realise it was a very foolish thing to do," the judge told him, adding that it was a good thing no one was injured.
"I hope it's something you remember - never to break the law again," he said.
The judge called for a report assessing the teen's suitability for probation and adjourned sentencing to February.