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Forum: What redress is there for families facing prolonged harassment?

Forum: What redress is there for families facing prolonged harassment?

Source: Straits Times
Article Date: 09 Oct 2020

Perhaps, there should be an independent audit of how such complaint cases are handled by the police, not unlike the Auditor-General's review of government agencies.

In the case of the Yishun death, it was reported that the attacker and his stepfather had taken matters into their own hands in 2016 after the victim persisted in visiting their flat even after the family lodged more than 50 police reports against him (Yishun death: Jail for attacker and his stepfather, Oct 6).

It seems strange that despite them reporting the incidents of stalking and harassment to the police, they still took matters into their own hands in the end. Does it make sense then to report such cases to the police?

It was reported that the police had suggested to the aggrieved family to make a magistrate's complaint so that a mediation process could then be put in place.

While I have every sympathy for the victim's family, I think the broader question we need to ask is: How does one obtain redress when such intrusion goes on for a prolonged period causing distress, fear and tension to a family?

Do the police not have the capacity to handle such cases? Despite the numerous police reports, little help seemed to have been forthcoming to resolve the situation.

Perhaps, there should be an independent audit of how such complaint cases are handled by the police, not unlike the Auditor-General's review of government agencies. Any gaps in procedure should undergo a root-cause analysis with actionable consequences.

Otherwise, anyone in a similar situation will not see a need to report the matter to the police.

Ignatious Fernandez

Source: Straits Times © Singapore Press Holdings Ltd. Permission required for reproduction.

 

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