72-year-old man arrested for threatening to kill ‘noisy’ tenant living above him


Police in Asahikawa, Hokkaido, on Sunday arrested a 72-year-old man on suspicion of threatening to kill the tenant who lived above him in a municipal apartment building after a dispute over noise.

According to police, the incident occurred at around 7:20 p.m. on Saturday. Local media reported that the suspect went upstairs and banged on the door of a man in his 70s. When the door was opened, he told the man that he was going to kill him unless he stopped being so noisy. He then went back downstairs to his own apartment.

The threatened man called police who detained the suspect for questioning. The suspect was quoted by police as saying his upstairs neighbor was always making noise and it had reached a point where he could no longer bear it.

Police did not elaborate on what the “noise” was.

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Monster neighbors are a real threat in Japan. I had one living underneath me for a while. She called the cops a few times telling them lies about what I was doing. She called the cops once and told them I was using a chainsaw on my second floor balcony, which was a vacuum cleaner. Flushing the toilet late at night was enough to send her off. Be careful of your neighbors. There are too many whackos out there.

20 ( +24 / -4 )

Yep, I echo what Lindsey said. It's not just Japan, in the UK I had some horror neighbours. That's why I bought a detached house in Japan rather than an apartment with a shared space. It can seriously effect your life.

9 ( +11 / -2 )

Loud, thumping footsteps, so fierce that they cause bottles to clink and rattle on the bureau in the apt below, continual rumbling of opening and closing Japanese-style closet and room doors on those small pulley wheels, that sound like an earthquake approaching... Continual opening and closing of noisy sliding glass doors, and morning and evening rolling up and down of storm like shutters, and screens slammed shut, can jolt a person out of sleep.

Landlords blame you for complaining, and say it is to be expected, living in a “mansion” building...

No, it’s called carpeting, and consideration for others.

I have since moved to a top floor apt., with doors with hinges, and will never endure that horror, again.

I 100% understand this man’s frustration, and how oblivious people can drive you to that point.

Police can be called, but if the offending person doesn’t answer the door, they won’t pursue it further...

Rental agencies won’t talk between other agencies, to air grievances, and many agencies are used for one apt bldg.

It’s a system sorely needing reform, in no mistake.

7 ( +9 / -2 )

When I lived in Singapore all the apartments had marble flooring and unluckily for me, I swear, their lived 3 or 4 women of ill repute, right above, that came home in high heels at 3AM almost every night. It was a dilemma because when I went up and knocked on the door... these women were damn hot. The horney side of me almost won out but I had to get a good nights rest so I politely asked if they could please just take off the high heels when the arrived back home. The story goes on but nobody probably wants to hear about it.

8 ( +12 / -4 )

When looking for somewhere to live, I always choose 最上階 角部屋 - corner apartment on top floor, just not worth taking these risks, no time to waste with noisy/nosy neighbors

6 ( +7 / -1 )

Noise is a big problem in cities where neighbours live close to each other and walls and ceilings are thin. I once lived in an apartment below a neighbour who had a teen age daughter listening to loud rock music every night just above my bedroom. After a few phone calls which produced no improvement, I told the mother, "Do you know, loud rock music can cause crimes to be commited?" and I banged down the phone. Soon I had a call from the police warning me not to threaten my neighbour !

6 ( +7 / -1 )

For 30 years, we have always lived in houses. The neighbors are quiet and also very friendly. I sometimes worry about disturbing them. During the night there is total silence.

4 ( +8 / -4 )

One of the best things about owning a house is there are no upstairs or downstairs neighbors to deal with. Also, no shared spaces, no waiting for elevators, no kids in my way. Can't beat it.

8 ( +11 / -3 )

On my daily strolls around the neighborhood I have discovered two houses where the TV is so loud I can hear it from across the street. Both houses have elderly homeowners (about 70 or 80 plus). Owning a home, even detached (aren't they all?), in Japan doesn't protect you from noise, unfortunately.

Maybe Mr 72 was fed up with listening to Mr 70s' TV? Or talking on his landline to his mahjong friends?

3 ( +5 / -2 )

As things are noise laws are in favour of those making the noise rather than those impacted. Everyone seems too polite to do anything. I firmly believe a dedicated noise control team should be available for people to ask to intervene and rule on any complaints, asking bored koban police to intervene is a little too extreme..

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Fortunately I’ve always had good neighbors. The neighbor above is a little noisy but he is a good guy. I’ve talked with him. He seems to be dropping something heavy every day on the floor so you can hear a big thud. I’ve have no idea what the guy next to me is doing. He talks for long periods, about 3 hours and dominates the conversation. About 80 percent. I would get tired talking that long. The thin walls are a problem. I heard sex noises one time in another place I heard.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Buy a house and basically it all goes away…

2 ( +3 / -1 )

@ Lindsay

" She called the cops a few times telling them lies" I heard this happens frequently. IMO be careful because depending on who is involved , they'll believeb it, and if you don't have S.O.F.A. good luck.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

" She called the cops a few times telling them lies" I heard this happens frequently. IMO be careful because depending on who is involved , they'll believeb it, and if you don't have S.O.F.A. good luck.

Use security cameras for evidence

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

I moved house because of psycho neighbours downtairs. I bought a house and sometimes play my piano at 2am.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

I'm more on the Oversensitive Neighbor side. I live in Hong Kong, but our family does have an apartment in Japan. During one of the periods I went to visit, the guy under us complained about noise. No, I don't even play music, so that isn't it. But I have to use the toilet, including at night sometimes, and my door is on rollers. That small noise, which is insufficient to wake my parents in their sleep, apparently penetrated to our neighbor's apartment.

The only thing I can say is darn it I have to use our premises. If Japanese insist on making paper-thin walled apartments (and I'm not even living in a cheap apaato, but a "proper" 2LDK mansion), they should learn to acclimatize themselves to the noise of their neighbor's regular movement.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

That's your apartments made of cardboard walls which are available 95% on cases. ZERO noize canceling, ZERO insulation for both walls, floors not windows, even for the brand new buildings.

It's amazing how those buildings are getting a license for construction, when in any other country in the world those would be firmly denied. Except earthquake proof and maybe burn proof, those buildings have ZERO quality materials that can make the tenants life good and private.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

This is an interesting case. Once the Japanese are concerned with social values (respect for others) while the police are concerned with threatening 72 years old. "He told the man that he was going to kill him unless he stopped being so noisy", this was a metaphor for how the noise threatened his right to privacy.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

I already can ear my neighbour's dog scretching his ears at a fast pace, i m sure its one of his dogs. When tgey first moved in i heard his wife screaming while doing sex. How better neighbours one would wish for? Hopefully they will move away like the 3 previous couples before them, low eraners trying to fit in good neighborood...

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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