Jail for man whose suicide bid killed lover

PUBLISHED : Friday, 04 June, 1999, 12:00am
UPDATED : Friday, 04 June, 1999, 12:00am

A judge yesterday jailed for two years a desperate man who tried to gas himself but ended up killing his girlfriend.

Judge Bernard Whaley said Yeung Chun-yee had disregarded the safety of others when he tried to kill himself by cutting a gas pipe connected to a water heater on May 21 last year.

'Even in that extreme state of depression in which a person tries take his own life, he still has responsibility towards other people,' he said.

Yeung, 31, admitted recklessly endangering the life of his girlfriend, Ng Lok-lin, and damaging the Tuen Mun flat, which he rented.

The District Court had heard that Yeung intended to commit suicide by inhaling thinner and stabbing himself with a pair of scissors, but he mistook a bottle of paraffin for thinner.

Yeung then changed his plan and cut the wires of the water heater, pulled off the copper tubing and lay in the bathtub waiting to be gassed.

But Yeung's girlfriend suddenly opened the door and the heater exploded. Ng, 28, died of severe burns three weeks later. Yeung suffered first- and second-degree burns to 45 per cent of his body.