Late last year we ran a story about a man being reported to police for asking schoolgirls for directions in Aichi and the possible social implications of this.
Last week in Osaka a similar incident occurred. However, in this case it’s uncertain who the truly “suspicious” person is; the man or the girls who reported him.
Here a translation of the police report as posted in the Osaka section of safety bulletin website Anzen.
From: Osaka Pref. Police
Date: 2013/01/16 02:02:03
Subject: Incident of Calling to Middle School Girls
On 16 January, at approximately 12:10 a.m. on a street near 3-10 Migaoka, Neyagawa City, a middle school student was pushing her bike alongside a friend after school on their way home. An incident occurred wherein they heard a man in work-clothes calling out “Where is the train station?”
The suspicious person was a lone male, 30-40 years old, a little stout, wearing beige colored work-clothes and glasses with short hair.
If you see a suspicious person report it to an adult and make a report to 110.
[110 = police emergency number]
When this report hit the internet, people responded with the same “you can’t even ask someone for directions anymore” and “it’s the end of society” type comments that we saw during the Aichi incident.
The jokers also came out with witticisms such as “it’s only the truly perverted who are into hearing station directions” and “it certainly is suspicious to see a guy not using Google Map for directions these days.”
But finally one commenter made the most shocking observation. Some of you probably noticed it too. Let’s check the first line of that e-mail again.
“On 16 January, at approximately 12:10 a.m. on a street near…”
Why are these junior high girls walking home from school at ten past midnight!? Sure students in Japan have it rough with cram schools and other extra-curricular activities, but midnight?
Having walked home from work at around midnight in Osaka several times myself, I can safely say that most people out there are “suspicious.” That includes myself, guys in beige work-clothes and most definitely young girls.
In fact, I would like implore all middle-aged men who see middle school girls on the street at midnight: For your own safety, DO NOT TALK TO THEM and call the police immediately. Those girls must be up to something shady.
Together – we can make a difference.
▼ The Osaka police report listed at 12:10 a.m.
▼ Also, if the suspicious guy is reading this, here’s the way to the nearest station.