Thursday, June 8

Fear saved my life, says woman


SIBU: Fear caused by a previous burglary stopped Li Shiao Lan, a 28-year-old Chinese national, from going downstairs to check out a commotion in her house on the morning of January 3 last year probably saved her life.

The wife of a businessman slain in a quadruple murder at RTM Road last year was testifying at the trial of a 17-year-old boy charged with the murders of Ling Tong Hock, a 36-year-old businessman, his mother Leong Nyuk Lan, 76, and his two children, David, 10, and Amy, 7, in the High Court here yesterday.

She said she knew something was amiss downstairs but did not dare to go down to check because the house had been broken in before.

She was the eighth prosecution witness called by deputy public prosecutor Muslim Abdul Hamid to give evidence at the trial.

She told the court that she woke up around 7am that day, and went downstairs to read the newspaper.

After reading, she returned to her bedroom upstairs while her husband went downstairs.

“I then went to the toilet. A short while later after coming back to the bedroom, I heard voice shouting `Ha’,” she recalled.

Ling’s another child, Kelvin, was seriously injured but survived the attack.

The accused is charged with killing Leong, Ling, David and Amy by using a sledge hammer in their house between 6am and 7.30am that day.

He also faces a charge with attempted murder on Kevin at the same time and place.

Li told the court yesterday that she was not sure who made the sound `Ha’.

She said she did come out of the bedroom to see what was happening downstairs, but did not see anything.

She returned to the bedroom and tried to call her husband with her handphone.

“I shut the bedroom door, and it got locked automatically because the lock had been faulty for some time,” she said.

Li said her calls to her husband’s handphone were not picked up.

A short time later, she heard the sound of someone running up the staircases.

“I then climbed out of a bedroom window and staggered on the roof to the corner unit of the house where I called out to a coffee shop proprietor by the name of `Liao Chang’.

“I was standing on the roof when I called out to him telling him it looked like my house was broken into.”

Li also told Liao Chang that her husband did not pick up her phone call.

She asked Liao Chang to go to her house to call out for her husband.

“I told him the location of my house and he then went over and knocked on the gate, and called out to the occupants of the house,” Li related.

No one responded. Both the gate and the main door of the house were locked.

To a question, Li said she did not notice Liao Chang going to the back of her house. “I also could not remember seeing any neighbour coming out of their houses,” she said.

Li said shortly after that while she was still standing on the roof that a neighbour let her enter his house.

Hearing continues today.