Teacher Accused Of Taking Upskirt Video, But Should We Judge Him So Quickly?

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Man Behaves Suspiciously On MRT, But Person Who Took Video Is Also Suspicious

Mr David James Chua is either a disgusting pervert or a wrongly accused man, depending on what you believe over the Internet.

But what’s sure is that he’s probably the most hated man in Singapore right now, after he was caught on a video posted last Saturday (July 15), appearing to take upskirt photos of a woman on the MRT.

But why are we not hating on the person who took the video, who filmed Mr Chua for 2 whole minutes before he did anything suspicious?

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Dubious Behaviour

The 2-minute video, which according to Channel NewsAsia took place on the Circle Line between the MacPherson and Paya Lebar stations, showed the accused fiddling with his mobile before placing it onto his bag in a strange position.

When a female commuter moved behind him, he was seen turning around and shifting his bag, with the phone on it, under her skirt.

Dubious behaviour? Judge for yourself by checking out the video here. Pay attention to the last 5 seconds:

CSI Sleuths

Most people thought Mr Chua’s behaviour was indeed dodgy, and the resulting public outcry led to him being CSI-ed by the Internet.

It was discovered that he was a PE teacher at Xinmin Primary School.

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Xinmin then confirmed that he was a teacher at the school, and he was placed on leave amid police investigations.

Judgmental

Though his behaviour was admittedly suspicious, many netizens already seemed to make their mind that he was guilty — comments crucifying him popped up in hordes no matter the platform or publisher.

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And these were just the nice ones.

Not Perverted, But A Habit?

However, not everyone on the Internet thought Mr Chua was guilty.

A former colleague known only as Ms Naidu who claimed to be a “very close friend” of Mr Chua’s was one of them.

She sent an e-mail to Alvinology, saying that she would like to “speak out in hopes of justice for my Friend who’s being a victim of this accusation at the moment that is circulating online”.

Having known the accused for 5 years, she said that Mr Chua had a tendency of “leaving his phone on the surface of his bag”, citing it as a “habit” done even when nobody else is around, instead of a “perverted purposeful act”.

She maintained her friend’s innocence, saying that he had a “gem of a heart” and that there was “no glimpse in his characteristic to suggest” what he did.

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We think she might have a point, as we can’t prove that Mr Chua’s phone was even recording anything when it ended up under the woman’s skirt.

Internet Vigilantism

Whether Mr Chua is innocent or guilty, it’s quite obvious that this is yet another case of online vigilantism in Singapore, where netizens are quick to play judge, jury and executioner.

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It’s not being fair to the accused and even to the alleged culprit to immediately jump to conclusions using incomplete information based on what someone on the Internet said.

Because if it’s on the Internet, it must be true, right?

Seek And Destroy

Sometimes the vigilantism and the resulting judgement can be merciless — and totally wrong.

We’ve seen it happen before, when an innocent woman and her boyfriend were wrongly accused by netizens of pushing an elderly man in a Toa Payoh hawker centre. Read our story on the Toa Payoh couple who was wrongly identified as bullying an elderly man.

Why are people so quick to hunt down suspected culprits?

“People may enjoy the feeling of accomplishment of being the one who solves, or helps solve, the puzzle of identity. Others may wish to show how clever they are,” said social media expert Michael Netzley in a report by The Straits Times on online “CSI” vigilantes.

It is important to note that while we here at MustShareNews are not defending Mr Chua’s alleged actions, we hope that our readers not contribute towards destroying his reputation but let the investigation run its course instead.

After all, the allegation has yet to be confirmed and the video, while suspicious, does not conclusively prove his guilt. Hence he shouldn’t be judged as guilty until it’s proven that he is.

Otherwise, you’ll start seeing unnecessary, sweeping statements such as this.

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Come on.

Really, Just Look At Some Of The Comments

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You tell them, guy without a profile picture.

Suspicious Video-Taker

Amid the sea of hatred, few thought to ask another question.

Why was the person shooting the video filming Mr Chua for 2 whole minutes before anything actually happened? How could he have known that Mr Chua was going to do something suspicious?

And when he did do something suspicious, why didn’t he report it to SMRT officials, rather than just posting the video on the Internet?

Okay, now raise your pitchforks.

Reserving Judgement

If Mr Chua indeed tried to take an upskirt video, he’s worthy of our revulsion.

But until that is proven, we would like to reserve our judgement on him.

After all, nobody’s reputation should be ruined because of an inconclusive video on the Internet and the mob mentality of some netizens.

Featured images from KnowYourMeme and YouTube.

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