A 17-hour standoff between the police and a man who locked himself in a Sembawang flat with a two-year-old boy ended after police broke into the unit on Wednesday afternoon (Sep 28).
The 39-year-old suspect had locked himself and the boy inside the fifth-floor unit at Block 462 Sembawang Drive since around 6.40pm on Tuesday. At 12.03pm on Wednesday, officers from the Special Operations Command forced their way into the unit.
The man was arrested for wrongful confinement and drug-related offences, the police said, adding that the boy’s mother has also been arrested for drug-related offences.
The boy was unharmed and is now in the custody of authorities. Paramedics are assessing his condition, the police said. Channel NewsAsia understands that the police will work with the Ministry of Social and Family Development on the boy’s well-being.
The incident was believed to be sparked off by a dispute between the boy's mother and the man, said to be a friend of the family. Police investigations are ongoing.
Earlier on Wednesday, Sembawang GRC MP Lim Wee Kiak told the media that the boy – the youngest of four children – had access to sufficient food and water at home while he was held in the flat.
“We are watching the situation very closely and the police have been working very hard to negotiate with the individual involved. Our concern is for the safety of both the individual and the child,” he said.
“We understand it’s a family dispute and they are now trying to resolve this. We have also checked our database and the family is not known to us for ComCare assistance or anything at all,” Dr Lim added.