Last Sunday (16 June), which was supposed to be a happy occasion for all as it was Father’s Day, turned sour for one particular family.
A 35-year-old man has been charged for murdering his two-year-old daughter, who was described as a bubbly and bright girl, in a Sengkang flat.
Johnboy John Teo, who was given the charge in hospital on Tuesday (18 June), is accused of killing Ashley Clare Teo at their house on the 11th storey of Block 163B Rivervale Crescent on Sunday evening.
The toddler who would have turned three in October was found lying motionless in a bedroom when police discovered her around 10.30pm on Sunday. However, she was pronounced dead at the Sengkang General Hospital.
Her father was also found in the same room with multiple injuries, but no further details were revealed about them in the court documents.
If convicted of murder, Teo will face the death penalty.
The Chinese-language newspaper Shin Min Daily News reported that Teo divorced his ex-wife, Eileen Cheok, in March this year, and the latter gained custody of Ashley. She then left their marital home with their daughter about a month ago.
She told the Chinese-language paper that she last saw her daughter on Saturday afternoon when the couple participated together in a family day event at Ashley’s childcare centre, and Teo had visitation rights to his daughter on Sunday.
After Teo failed to return Ashley to Ms Cheok on Sunday evening, she and her family called the police which led to the discovery of the toddler’s body.
Ashley’s cremation was conducted on the same day (Sunday) at Mandai Crematorium, and it was attended by over 40 people, including Ashley’s mother, teachers, family and friends. Teo’s family were also seen present at the crematorium centre.
Upon reading this news, many netizens were enraged with Teo’s heartless action of killing his own daughter. They penned their thoughts on ST’s Facebook page where they highlighted that the innocent girl didn’t deserve to die in such a manner. They also said that a father’s first duty is to protect his daughter, and the man deserves a harsher sentence than the death sentence.
However, some online users said that Teo took this extreme step most probably due to depression and stress, as he recently got a divorce from his wife. They also added that he didn’t want to be separated from his daughter, forcing him to resort to killing her.
Ally Tan who claims to know Teo said that he is “cool and soft type of person” and “a doting father”. She saw the father-and-daughter duo two years ago and wondered what happened after that which caused him to take this drastic step.