Retired officer pinched woman's bottom at club

PUBLISHED : Saturday, 25 February, 2012, 12:00am
UPDATED : Saturday, 25 February, 2012, 12:00am


A retired police superintendent has been ordered to perform 100 hours of community service for pinching a woman on the bottom in a police club.

Steve Chiu Sim-hung, 50, who joined the force in 1979 and retired after 30 years of service, was earlier convicted of one count of indecent assault on September 2 at the Police Sports and Recreation Club in Mong Kok.

Magistrate Rickie Chan kam-cheong said Chiu's conduct was absolutely unacceptable in a civilised society and the influence of alcohol could not be used as an excuse.

'It is possible you lowered your awareness after you left the police force,' Chan told Chiu in Kwun Tong Court, where his friends and former colleagues filled the public gallery. 'Beware of your conduct. Better still, drink less.'

The magistrate added: 'You have free will to decide whether to drink or not. If you can't control yourself, you have to bear the consequences. However, many people fail to understand this and end up harming themselves or causing irreversible errors.'

He said what Chiu did was not the most serious kind of offence and the victim was not traumatised, though it was certainly unpleasant for her.

Judging from Chiu's unblemished service record, Chan believed it was a one-off incident and decided to give him a chance, as the probation report showed Chiu was unlikely to re-offend.

Chiu was very remorseful and his wife, a police sergeant, was supportive, the court heard.

The victim, a teacher in her 30s, went to the club for her son's barbeque party, the court heard. As she walked past the bar she felt someone pinching her right buttock. She looked back and saw Chiu removing his left hand. He smiled and said: 'Sorry for touching your butt.'

The defence did not dispute that Chiu, who was attending a former colleague's gathering, did touch the woman. But Chiu claimed he mistook her for a male stranger who had just had a brawl with him.