A recent incident at the Institute of Mental Health in Singapore landed one patient in jail and resulted in the hospitalisation of another patient. The violent outburst came from 33-year-old Eddie Lee, who stomped on the head of another patient at the IMH on April 12, 2016. Lee was sentenced to two years in jail on Wednesday, February 8, 2017.

The Attacker’s Story

According to testimony in the court, Eddie Lee witnessed a 56-year-old male patient abusing one of the IMH nurses. The man allegedly spat on the nurse’s head and was verbally abusive. Earlier in the day, Lee testified to seeing the older man hitting another nurse on the head. Seeing these events angered Lee, since he claims to view the nurses at IMH as his friends.

As the older patient passed by him, Lee suddenly experienced “an immense pressure in his chest … which compelled him to kick the victim,” according to his lawyer. Lee kicked the older man in the face, knocking him down. Then he continued to stamp on the victim’s head and face for 10 seconds or so, before the IMH staff reached him and restrained him from doing further damage.

The older man suffered bleeding on the brain as well as skull fractures. He later died in the hospital, not because of his head wounds, but because of a reaction to a drug administered to tranquilize him.

A History of Mental Illness

As a teenager, Eddie Lee was diagnosed with antisocial personality disorder and schizophrenia. During the past ten years, he has spent time in and out of the Institute of Mental Health. One IMH psychiatrist wrote an assessment of Lee and mentioned his “physically aggressive behaviour towards fellow patients, nursing staff and (auxiliary police) officers,” as well as his involvement in several assaults. Just two days prior to the head-stomping incident, Lee violently assaulted another patient, causing fractures and damaging the individual’s eyesight.

Jail Time and Future Treatment

Instead of the maximum penalty of 10 years in jail and caning, the judge ruled that Lee should have two years in jail for causing grievous hurt. Upon his release, officials will decide where to place him, since his violent tendencies indicate a need for long-term, intensive psychiatric treatment for his mental health.

Hope for Severe Mental Illness

Cases like Eddie Lee’s are sad to see— but there is always hope. At Adelphi Psych Medicine Clinic, we believe that rehabilitation and recovery is possible. No matter how severe a person’s mental illness may be, we are here to help. If you need the aid of an experienced psychiatrist in Singapore, contact our office and our friendly staff will be happy to arrange an appointment for you or a loved one, either in our office or at your home.

We ensure a confidential, caring environment, and we provide affordable, specialised services for patients of any age, from students and teens to soldiers and the elderly. We offer variety of treatment options that can reduce the symptoms of mental illness and help our patients find hope again.

News Feed from Adelphi Psych Medicine Clinic

Source: Channel News Asia, 8 February, 2017