Murdered man found in Toa Payoh void deck
Witness who could have stopped the brawl just left. -myp
RETIREE Tan Kok Kong, 59, saw a man slash and stab a younger man with a broken beer bottle several times - but he just left.
He said that he tried to stop the drunken brawl between the two men last Saturday night, but left after being punched in his left eye.
The younger man, Mr Charles Gonalingam, 36, was pronounced dead by paramedics at 11pm, half an hour after police received a call about the dispute at the void deck of Block 170, Lorong 1 Toa Payoh.
The police arrested a 57- year-old man in connection with the case at 10.55pm the same night at a void deck near Block 168, Lorong 1 Toa Payoh.
Residents said that he was in charge of the cleaners around that area, and was usually mild-mannered.
Mr Tan, also a resident in the area, said that he, the two men, and some others had been playing cards and drinking. For some reason unknown to Mr Tan, Mr Gonalingam and the suspect started spewing vulgarities at each other in Tamil.
Then, the scuffle broke out.
Mr Tan said that he left the scene a while after he was punched because he was upset about being attacked.
Another resident, Mr Subra Maniam, 37, who is self-employed, said that he had been good friends with Mr Gonalingam for eight years.
Residents, mostly retirees, gambled at the void deck every night, but his friend, who was jobless, joined in only recently, after his girlfriend of about seven to eight years broke up with him a couple of months ago, he said.
He said that he was sad to have lost his friend, whom he described as "a great person when he was sober".
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