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Ronald Loh
Monday, Jul 28, 2014

Singapore

Police trying to find boy's family but he just won't talk

The New Paper | Ronald Loh | Monday, Jul 28, 2014

On Saturday, police established the identity of a boy who was found wandering by himself at Marina Promenade on July 21.

In a statement, the police said that the boy is believed to have been dumped in Singapore by a 45-year-old man, presumably his father.

Hong Kong Police Force detained the man in Hong Kong on July 25.

Investigations are ongoing and arrangements will be made to return the boy to his place of origin as soon as possible, the police said.

Before the boy's identity was established, The New Paper reported that the police were unable to establish his identity as he refused to speak to officers.

Here is the article detailing the circumstances which left many puzzled.

ljessica@sph.com.sg


Police trying to find boy's family but he just won't talk

By Ronald Loh

The police and social workers have a unique problem on their hands: Getting information from a silent child so they can return him to his parents.

On Monday at 8pm, a boy thought to be between eight and 10 years old was found wandering along Marina Promenade.

When police officers approached him, he could not provide the names of his parents or their mobile phone numbers.

He is now with the Ministry of Social and Family Development (MSF).

Police are appealing for information about him and efforts are ongoing to locate his next-of-kin, a police spokesman said.

They posted his picture on their Facebook page on Wednesday, but so far no one has come forward to claim him.

The New Paper understands the boy has not been communicating with police officers. So they do not know if he is a local or foreigner.

Experts who spoke with TNP thought it unusual that the boy was not revealing any information about himself.

Dr Brian Yeo, a consulting psychiatrist at Mount Elizabeth Medical Centre who has been practising for about 20 years, said: "Police officers would be able to ascertain if he is a child with special needs.

"Even most children with special needs are generally able to give basic information about themselves.

"The way the police are broadcasting this alert suggests he is not willing to share his particulars. He could be running away from home or think he may have done something bad and is fearful of the consequences."

Said psychologist Daniel Koh of Insights Mind Centre: "The boy may have faced some trauma, abuse or betrayal and is now unable to open up to people, especially those in authority such as the police."

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