On Wednesday (March 3), a British man who molested a three-year-old girl while serving as a reading specialist at a learning center here was sentenced to 18 months in prison and three strokes of the cane.On October 20, 2018, Richard Christopher Monks, now 29, pleaded guilty to outraging the toddler’s modesty in his class.
In February, closed-circuit television (CCTV) videos taken from the classroom and played in court shows him rearranging some seats for a video-watching session around 5.20 p.m.The survivor was the youngest of six students in the school at the time.
The other children ranged in age from four to five.
Monks put himself behind the students, directly opposite the CCTV monitor, so he was aware that there was a camera mounted in one corner of the classroom, filming video from a certain angle.
As a result, the children’s upper bodies obscured his hands from view by the camera.
The lower half of the children’s bodies could not be captured from such an angle, according to Deputy Public Prosecutor Tan Hsiao Tien.Monks was seen in the video putting himself behind the victim while watching a video on his tablet. The kids then leaned against a table to look at the phone screen.
Monks repeatedly lifted the victim’s pink dress and caressed her breasts with his left hand, according to the video.She turned around repeatedly to look at him while he committed the offence.
Monks was also seen using his right hand to hold another mobile phone close to the victim’s buttocks, pointing it up her skirt.
The DPP added: “The victim was uncomfortable with the accused’s touch, and expressed her discomfort by fidgeting and turning back to look at him several times during the said duration.
“Despite (her) discomfort, the accused continued to touch and caress her buttocks.”The offence came to light on Oct 27, 2018 as the girl’s parents were preparing to take her to the learning centre for lessons but the child was reluctant to go.
When asked why, she said that “teacher Richard”, had “touched her” and pointed to her buttocks.Her mother alerted the police later that day and stopped taking her daughter to the centre.
Police arrested Monks on Nov 1, 2018, shortly after he returned to Singapore from a trip to Thailand.For molesting a child below 14 years old, an offender can be jailed for up to five years and fined or caned.