crime

79-year-old woman arrested for 24th time for pickpocketing

41 Comments

A 79-year-old woman was arrested in Tokyo’s Nakano Ward for attempting to steal money from a 62-year-old woman’s purse at a Musashino City department store, police said Thursday.

Police identified the woman as Sato Kamiyama, a notorious petty thief who has been arrested 23 times for similar offenses over the last 60 years, TBS reported.

Police caught Kamiyama in the food basement of the department store, Kamiyama’s preferred hunting grounds. Kamiyama was quoted by police as saying that shoppers are looking at the items, and don't pay close attention to their bags and purses, TBS reported.

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41 Comments
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I believe that you get a medal, a pension and a special meal for the 25th time caught. Excuse my flippancy but this is really ludicrous.

7 ( +7 / -1 )

hope she has been single all her life (never married)...or has children and grand children?

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

I was going to say lonely old woman crying for attention - but shes been doing this since she was 19, so maybe not! At what point does something like this go from being anti-social behaviour to a mental sickness?

5 ( +5 / -0 )

At what point does something like this go from being anti-social behaviour to a mental sickness

My guess 5th time.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

she is exploiting her age to gain sympathy from the police no doubt. She needs to be put away for a longer time...

0 ( +3 / -4 )

Jail??! Perhaps cut off her pension?

-4 ( +1 / -5 )

Chopping hands is maybe barbaric but at least it works...

-5 ( +5 / -10 )

On a related topic of old age and crime, I heard that the number of seniors committing petty theft is rising. Some of the reasons reported was loneliness and a way to relieve boredom. Does anyone have info related to this?

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Old habits never die.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

What was she thinking, she is 79 years old and she got arrested, "they aren't nice in jail."

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Go granny go!

-4 ( +4 / -8 )

She should try something else, she's not very good at pickpocketing?

13 ( +13 / -0 )

She needs to be kept off the streets, seeing as she will probably never change her ways. If not, ,maybe put her picture up in local stores for awareness and public humiliation? No sympathy for this woman.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

If she was arrested 24 times in her 60 year career as a pickpocket, I wonder how many times she wasn't caught pickpocketing. I also wonder if the cops called her デパ地下 (depachika) granny?

1 ( +1 / -0 )

She has been known as "Depa-chika no Sato Baa" (Granny Sato of the food basement department store). She is a wealthy woman, an owner of an apartment and everything, living with her family. Her neighbors are talking about her like this. "I haven't seen Sato for a while." "She must be in jail AGAIN."

7 ( +7 / -1 )

@JapanGal: Go granny go!

What! How would you feel if she stole (pick pocketed) yours or my grandma's monthly pension money. Suddenly not so funny or cute is it?

6 ( +6 / -0 )

Silly old woman - must be demented due to her age! I think it'd be for the best if she spends her last days locked up in some type of facility.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

I was thinking the same thing Zichi, but then I realise I don`t know how many times shes actually gotten away with it! She could have a 99% success rate! It certainly looks like she has made enough to make a career out of this!

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

I guess she hit lots of places in that area. Okigubo, Nakano Broadway, etc in her time plenty of big shopping places around.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

And it wouldn't even enter my head as I stood perusing the shelves that that sweet looking old lady was eyeing up my bag! It reminds me of that Airport 'some year' movie with the old granny hopping on and off planes without paying!

Jesting aside, as someone else posted, she is breaking the law and who knows how much she has made off with over the years. My friend is a single Mum and she had an envelope of cash stolen from her bag. That money was to pay the monthly bills. I only found out about this after I found her sobbing in her genkan as her electric had been cut off. We cannot possibly know how much of a snowball effect this 'sweet, little old lady' could have had on someone's life.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

elsewhere it says she is like addicted to gambling, probably pachinko or something.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

The busy shoppers with purses don't notice her lurking near them: Just the other countless shoppers behind and next to this slow-hand, 79-year-old granny. Thus, the arrests. She needs to develop some peripheral vision, or better yet, ethics.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

It's all cute and funny until she steals YOUR wallet. I say, lock her up for at least three months and see if that changes her behavior. If not, she might be a kleptomaniac.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Ed O Jidai.

Those would be the same shoppers that don't care into whose way they walk, etc. Visit those stations, etc areas when they get busy again, they are packed and you get bumped every few seconds.

Those places are mayhem at times and it is easier to walk through a rugby scrum.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I guess people generally don't pay attention to their belongings when in public as they feel confident that no one would dare steal their stuff here in Japan, especially when you are surrounded by "unsuspicious-looking" people. I mean, who would have thought that a Japanese granny would try to steal? However, when I'm back in my country, I'm always very vigilant (hugging my bag, never taking out my phone in public) because I know pickpocketers are everywhere (no matter how presentable they appear to be).

0 ( +1 / -1 )

they should make her a high ranking member of the government....she would fit right in with the rest of the criminals there!

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Spot on "Redcrescent". No breaks for her at all! Cut her pension off I say!

0 ( +0 / -0 )

"Kamiyama was quoted by police as saying that shoppers are looking at the items, and don’t pay close attention to their bags and purses" but if a gaigin is around they may scurry and hold on to bags for dear life...thanks to the j-media

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

Poor woman, 23 times.. Government should have financially help her, for considering the Age.

-4 ( +0 / -3 )

byouki kamo?

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Poor woman, 23 times.. Government should have financially help her, for considering the Age.

What? Help her not get caught? Given that she's been doing this her whole adult life, her age is nothing to do with it. And I thought Japan was very safety... though you wouldn't expect grannies anywhere to be ripping you off- I felt someone at my back once in Hong Kong & turned round & there was just an old dear there, thought nothing of it. Got home to find a very fine slash through my leather bag- scalpel job I'd say. Can't trust anyone.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I would have more sympathy for this woman had her career not spanned 60 years. That's about one arrest every 2 years or so. I'm assuming that she must have spent some time in jail as well, but who knows how many other times she stole but wasn't caught.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Tough call. At that age, it is hard to say put her in jail, but in her case that is probably necessary.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

zichi:

" She should try something else, she's not very good at pickpocketing? "

She got caught 23 times, any idea how many times she was sucessful?

1 ( +1 / -0 )

She has been known as "Depa-chika no Sato Baa" (Granny Sato of the food basement department store). She is a wealthy woman, an owner of an apartment and everything, living with her family. Her neighbors are talking about her like this. "I haven't seen Sato for a while." "She must be in jail AGAIN."

The question is, did she gain her wealth (and apartment) via other people's wallets? She's a one-woman crime-spree.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

So why didn't the department store have an employee follower her every time she showed up in the Depachika? Since they know who she is and what she is doing, where is the customer care? Why didn't they show her the door every time she showed up to rip off other people?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

They won't do anything to her now because of her age. The conversation probably went something like this (only in Japanese of course)..."Honored mother, we're sorry to interrupt your shopping, and for any embarrassment you may feel at this moment. Would it be alright if we asked you to give back that wallet?"...

1 ( +1 / -0 )

I believe she did not do this because she doesnt have money... this is some sort of mental illness like kleptomaniac. I know what she did was not good but more than hate I pity her. just thinking...

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

why does she pick your pocket? she loves the RUSH! Like I point out.....the government should give her a job and then she can help them figure out how to pick tax payers pocket even deeper! ever asked why your government steals your money and lies to you?

1 ( +1 / -0 )

How many times will she have to get arrested to learn she aint suppose to pickpocket someone.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

I'm sure back at the precint, the cops and her are having tea (or coffee...) and cracking jokes "back in the day, remeber the time you....." Cops should start a pool and bet when she'll be back.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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