A 34-year-old technician, accused of raping his biological daughter when she was 14, said he was pressured by two police officers to confess after being told he had failed a lie detector test.
The officers had persistently told him when interviewing him on April 2, 2015, to admit to the offences as the police had found that he had been jailed before, he told the High Court yesterday in an ongoing trial.
“They kept asking me and I felt very pressured. I was confused. I thought of a lie and I lied to them. All I wanted to do was to leave the room,” he said through a Mandarin interpreter.
Details of his criminal records were not disclosed in court.
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The man, who cannot be named to protect the identity of the girl, also said that during a break in the interview, he sent his wife a text message that said the two officers kept asking him to admit to the offences. She replied that if he did not do it, he should not admit to it.
He is fighting two charges of raping his daughter, the eldest of his three children, at the family’s flat in Punggol on Nov 19, 2014 and Jan 9, 2015.
The daughter, now aged 17, is staying at a shelter for teenage girls.
She testified behind closed doors on Tuesday and Wednesday.
The court heard on Monday, when the trial started, that her mother and grandparents did not believe her and blamed her for reporting the matter.
The man had initially denied raping her.
On April 2, 2015, he admitted to having sex with her. The details he provided largely matched the particulars of the second charge, prosecutors said.
The accused is challenging the admissibility of the second statement, saying it was not made voluntarily.
Hence, a “trial within a trial”, known in legal parlance as voir dire, is being conducted to determine whether the statement can be admitted as evidence.
Describing how the statement was taken, the man said he was first told by the investigating officer of the case, Assistant Superintendent Samantha Xu, that he had failed a polygraph test. As ASP Xu asked him questions, another officer paced the room and chimed in whenever his answers were not the ones they wanted, he said.
Earlier, ASP Xu and ASP Vimala Raj testified that they did not coerce the man, and that at any one time, only one of them was in the room with him.
ASP Xu said she was alone when she recorded his statement.
ASP Raj said he went into the room and spoke to the man alone for “five to 10 minutes” and advised him to tell the truth.
When asked if ASP Raj was the one present in the room on April 2, the accused said the officer “looks very familiar” but he could not be sure.
The trial continues today.
Dad pleads guilty to hurting son: Jail for man who fractured 10-year-old’s eye socket
What started as a man’s discussion with his wife about their son escalated into a tussle when the boy taunted him.
The company managing director rained blows on his then 10-year- old son and fractured the boy’s right eye socket.
The man, who is now 51, was sentenced to a year’s jail yesterday after pleading guilty on Aug 10 to causing grievous hurt.
An assault charge involving the boy’s 41-year-old mother was taken into consideration during sentencing.
The man, who cannot be named to protect his son’s identity, committed the offences in their house in the Yio Chu Kang area at around 10.15pm on May 28, 2015.
He was undergoing divorce proceedings with the boy’s mother at that time.
The man came home that afternoon and scolded his son over his unsatisfactory grades at school.
After downing some drinks at around 10.15pm, he went to the boy’s bedroom and had a discussion with his wife about their son.
When the boy overheard them, he said: “You like that woman more than us. Why do you care for us so much?”
The man’s lawyer, Mr Ravinderpal Singh, told District Judge Hamidah Ibrahim that the boy had taunted his father about a “China mistress”. However, court papers did not reveal if she really existed.
The court heard that the boy repeated his remark after his father exclaimed: “What (did) you say?”
Furious, the man approached his son and kicked his face and body. He also pulled the boy’s hair and arms.
Deputy Public Prosecutor Kong Kuek Foo said: “(The boy) was lying on the floor and tried to defend himself with both hands. (His mother) immediately tried to intervene and tried to shield her son with her body, during which she was kicked in the back by the accused.”
The man then pushed her and she fell backwards, hitting her back against a vase and a safe.
He continued to punch his son’s face when he heard the boy uttering an expletive.
The family’s domestic helper, who witnessed the ruckus, alerted the police, and officers arrested the man when they arrived at the scene.
The boy was taken to KK Women’s and Children’s Hospital, where he was found to be suffering from injuries that included a fractured eye socket and a bruised forehead.
DPP Kong, who urged Judge Hamidah to jail the man for 15 months, said he had assaulted a vulnerable victim.
Mr Singh, however, asked for the lowest possible sentence and said his client had “snapped”.
The man is now out on $20,000 bail as he might appeal against his sentence.