NIBONG TEBAL: For slapping a teacher two years ago, a mother of three has been jailed six months and fined RM2,000 by the Jawi magistrate’s court here.
Housewife Tan Seow Yen, 36, was ordered by magistrate Shamshol Azwa Martadza to serve the jail sentence from yesterday. She paid the fine.
Shamshol Azwa held that the defence had failed to cast reasonable doubt in the prosecution’s case.
Tan was found guilty under Section 323 of the Penal Code of voluntarily causing hurt by slapping teacher L. Vanitha, 38, at SJK (C) Chong Kuang in Sungai Bakap at about 5.15pm on Feb 2, 2015.
The offence carries a maximum one-year jail term or a RM2,000 fine, or both if convicted.
In mitigation yesterday, defence counsel Mohd Ismail Mohamed said it was motherly instinct which caused Tan to react in such a way.
He said Tan’s then eight-year-old son was pinched in the nape of the neck because he was poor in a subject, and not because he was mischievous or causing disturbance to others in school.
He said the child could not sleep as a result of the injury, and had to be sent to the hospital for treatment.
Mohd Ismail urged the court to merely admonish and discharge his client.
“But if you are not with me, I hope my client will only be given minimum fine. Please do not send her to jail, as she has to care for three children aged between eight and 14,” he said.
DPP Afiq Nazrin Zaharinan pressed for an appropriate punishment to be meted out as a deterrent, and described Tan’s action as “immoral”.
He sought a deterrent sentence, so that incidents of such nature would not recur, adding that teachers should be respected in schools.
After sentence was passed, Mohd Ismail, on behalf of Tan, applied to the court for a stay on the sentence pending appeal against the decision, but this was denied by the court.
When met outside the courtroom after the decision, Vanitha, choking with emotion and sobbing, said: “I am happy with the decision. The case is finally over after two years.
“Justice is served. The pride and dignity of a teacher must always be upheld.”
Vanitha, who taught Bahasa Malaysia to Tan’s child, has since been transferred to another school here.