According to STOMP and the Police..the suspect is cleared:
No attempt by man to “grab” kindergarten kid in Hougang: Police
A spokesperson for the Police has clarified that there was no attempt by a man to “grab” a child from her mother on Monday morning (May 6) near a kindergarten at Hougang Avenue 5, and advises the public not to circulate the incident.
This response comes in light of a report about a man who had tried to “grab” a child away, at the lift lobby of Block 327 — one block away from the kindergarten located at Block 328. The report states that the man ran away after his unsuccessful attempt, as the mother held on to the child’s hand.
PCF Hougang Branch at Block 328, Hougang Avenue 5, had sent a letter to parents and guardians warning them about the alleged child grabbing incident on the same day.
**NOTE: Police said they have advised the PCF branch to retract the letter.
It also mentioned that a notice had been put up outside the kindergarten to inform parents.
One Facebook profile “PoshBaby Shop” reposted the notice Wednesday night and there were already more than 5,500 “shares”. Comments ranged from those who were alarmed by the news, to those who said it was likely a hoax.
There were also a number who were sceptical because they pointed to grammatical mistakes and unhelpful phrasing such as “normal looking” in the notice, and said it does not seem like an official statement.
This report even made it to The Straits Times fueling many parents’ panic:
PCF kindergarten in Hougang warns parents about “child grabbing” incident
A couple of online users have also posted the notice on the Singapore Police Force Facebook page asking for clarification and investigation. Police responded in a media statement at 1pm Thursday that they have contacted the parent of the child and the kindergarten to get more facts. And their subsequent investigations confirm that there was no such attempt to “grab” the child, they said.
A man in his 50s, who is “a neighbourhood character”, was merely trying to interact and hold the child’s hand while he was in the lift with them. There was no attempt by him to forcefully grab the child away. The mother seemingly panicked and after they got out of the lift, she reported the incident to her husband, who called the police at 11am on 6 May. The mother also alerted the kindergarten, which then put out the notice.
Police said on its Facebook page that “what really happened could have been taken out of context through hearsay by various concerned parties”.
As a reminder to parents, the police advise that they should ensure that young children are accompanied at all times by caregivers and they should not leave your child out of sight. They shouId also inform the school or childcare centre if they have arranged someone else to fetch the child.
Childcare centres and preschools are advised to ensure that only the rightful parents or appointed guardians are allowed to come into contact with the children. Parents, guardians or caregivers of young children should call 999 or make a police report if they come across any suspicious incidents.
Credits:STOMP Singapore and InSing News