Judge questions motives of knife-wielding father
A judge called it “strange” that a man with glowing letters of mitigation could have hurt his 13-year-old son with a kitchen knife, in District Court on Monday.
Chief District Judge Poon Siu-tung made the comment in the case of Tsang Ping-kwan, 54, a decoration worker who pleaded guilty to one count of wounding with intent.
Tsang attacked the boy around midnight on May 17, as the youngster was sleeping in the sitting room of their family home at a Sha Tin public housing estate.
Prosecutor Catherine Ko Po-chui said the son saw his father “holding the knife, chopping at his neck”. The boy raised his hands to protect himself and yelled for his father to stop, she said. The attacks left wounds on the boy’s neck and left thumb.
Despite Tsang’s violent attack, his 17-year-old elder daughter described the Shenzhen-born man, in the mitigation process, as “a responsible father” who never hurt his beloved children.
His brutal outburst resulted from work pressures and quarrels with her mother, she said.
The judge said he needed more information to understand why Tsang acted in such an extreme way, contradicting the personality described in his mitigation letters.
In one letter, Tsang’s employer said the man got along well with his colleagues and took good care of his family.
The defence counsel told the court that this was “an isolated incident”, pointing out that Tsang, who has no criminal record, did not repeat his attempt to hurt his son.
She said the boy had met a social worker several times since the incident, and the youngster was not suffering any long-term effects from the incident.
Poon adjourned sentencing until November 12, pending reports on Tsang from psychiatrists, psychologists and probation officers, and a psychologist’s report on his son.