Hong Kong teen who skipped class begged teacher to forgive him moments before falling to his death
- Form 4 student at T.W.G. Hs Kap Yan Directors’ College promised not to do it again
- Teacher had challenged pupil about lying to mother, when he told her he had afternoon off
A student who faced being disciplined for skipping class begged a teacher for a second chance moments before he fell to his death from a Tin Shui Wai building, an inquest heard on Monday.
Leung Cheuk-ming, 17, was found lying near the back door of his residence on the evening of March 21, 2017, soon after being told he could get a major demerit for missing lessons at T.W.G. Hs Kap Yan Directors’ College, in Sheung Shui.
“I beg you, please let me off,” Leung reportedly said to teacher Po Chi-keung. “I will change next time.”
On a day of emotional testimony at West Kowloon Court, Zhang Xiulan, the teenager’s mother, cried as she recalled hearing him begging Po for forgiveness over the incident, which began that afternoon.
Taking the stand, Po, who was in charge of discipline for all Form 4 pupils at the school, said he had been notified that Leung had gone missing, after attending classes in the morning.
The teacher called Leung, who told him he was feeling sick and had told the school office about leaving. Po said there had been no record of Leung doing that.
In a follow-up call with the family that evening, Po recalled Zhang telling him she believed it had been a test day, which was why the teenager was home early.
“I asked him if he had lied to his mother, and told him what he did probably amounted to skipping classes, which would warrant a major demerit,” Po said of his next conversation with Leung.
During her testimony, Zhang recalled how at that juncture, her son, who moved to Hong Kong from the mainland with her when he was little, begged Po for forgiveness.
“I said I could not make the decision,” Po said, when asked how he had responded.
Zhang said Leung then left home while she was taking a shower. She quickly called Po, who suggested she call police, but she did not want to make a scene at that stage.
Describing what happened next, a visibly distraught Zhang recalled going downstairs to look for him and running into a security guard who was investigating a loud noise made by a falling object.
“Immediately I wondered whether it would be my son,” she said. “I went over and checked it out, and it was him.”
The teenager was rushed to Tuen Mun Hospital, but did not survive the fall.
The inquest continues before Coroner Stephanie Tsui May-har on Tuesday.