crime

American man arrested over theft of car with children in back seat

68 Comments

Police have arrested a 43-year-old American man on suspicion of stealing a car with two children in the back seat from the parking lot of a convenience store in Ome, Tokyo, on June 15. Police suspect the man is part of a gang of thieves responsible for a number of car thefts in the Tokyo metropolitan area.

According to police, the two children — a girl aged 5 and her 2-year-old brother — were left in the car just after noon while the parents went into a convenience store to pick up a few items, leaving the key in the ignition, Fuji TV reported. The children’s father immediately called police and reported that their car had been stolen with the children inside.

The car was found just over 20 minutes later only two kilometers away from where it had been stolen with the children crying but unharmed.

Police quoted the suspect, identified as D Thompson, unemployed and of no fixed address, as saying that as soon as he noticed the children, he pulled the car over as soon as he could and fled the scene, Fuji TV reported

Meanwhile, police said they had arrested two other unemployed men as part of the car theft gang. Yasunari Fukuma, 45, and Takeshi Endo, 41, were charged with grand theft auto after it was discovered that they had stolen a display vehicle worth over 1.6 million yen from a dealership in August of last year.

Fuji TV quoted police as saying the two suspects were also responsible for a number of larceny cases in which they used a crowbars to break into restaurants and other establishments. In total, the two suspects stole well over 100 million yen from the stores during their raids.

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68 Comments
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Kick that Idiot American out of the Country!

14 ( +20 / -6 )

Thanks for making Americans look even worse D. Thompson...you slime! Go back to the US and be an a$$ over there, and stop tarnishing the image of us decent Americans!

33 ( +36 / -3 )

I'm kind of disgusted the headline starts with the person's foreign nationality, but the other two arrested are Japanese. It is exactly this kind of prejudice that is gonna stop Japan becoming a globalised nation.

17 ( +39 / -22 )

I wonder why no first name was given for the American suspect, even though the first names were given for his partners in crime.

I would be interested to get more background information on this dimwit, who unfortunately happens to be a compatriot.

5 ( +6 / -1 )

As usual, the headline put emphasis on the nationality, as if it matters more than the crime he committed.

20 ( +27 / -7 )

Kick that Idiot American out of the Country!

After serving time for your crime.

14 ( +15 / -1 )

For what it's worth, the Japanese media reports his name as "トンプソン・デュード", which I would guess would be rendered as "Dude Thompson." Still, there are apparently no other details being reported about him.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

Crime rate of foreigners are probably higher overall, but if you exclude the visa problem, crime rate of japanese in Japan is actually higher than foreigners in japan. Foreigners who have been abused with wrong facts by xenophobic Japanese, you can proudly tell them that the foreigner's crime in japan is no where near as bad as they try to make it out to be.

10 ( +14 / -4 )

I don't have a problem with identifying his nationality. Two kilometers is a long way. What a dumbass.

11 ( +12 / -1 )

He dont have Japan citizenship, thats why they say American, is that a problem ? He dont have permanent residence , so, he should be home in the US , not in Japan .

-16 ( +7 / -23 )

Asahi Newspaper reports his name as "トンプソン・ラッド・デュード," or "Rad Dude Thompson."

Obviously, this guy has no identification and is playing games with the police. This certainly raises doubts as to whether he provided a false nationality as well.

Here is the link: http://www.asahi.com/articles/ASG6K3VXNG6KUTIL014.html

8 ( +8 / -0 )

Nenad Jovanović Jun. 19, 2014 - 08:08AM JST He dont have Japan citizenship, thats why they say American, is that a problem ?

Doesn't matter in Japan. Even if you have Japanese legal resident or citizenship, you will always be a gaijin (American, Chinese, Korean, etc.) and news will report as such.

18 ( +19 / -2 )

He is the Dude?

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

He's a persona non grata.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Are Japanese car theft gangs hiring foreign talent these days?

7 ( +9 / -2 )

After reading other news, I doubt the is really an American citizen. My guess he is not, but can speak American English fluently and is pretending to be from USA. The years I lived in Japan, never heard of a homeless US citizen also.

4 ( +11 / -7 )

Lost.

You would be surprised how many homeless foreigners exist in Japan.

7 ( +12 / -5 )

Yes, that's right IT'S ME. But Americans are well supported their embassies and consulates. If an American goes homeless, I am sure he is offered some support to return to USA or to find a solution to his problem in foreign lands. Of course, once in USA he'll be charged, but not left by himself.

-2 ( +3 / -5 )

Sensato,

Yep, this guy is obviously taking them for a ride (haha).

You would be surprised how many homeless foreigners exist in Japan.

So enlighten us with all your statistics on the issue. Please...

so, he should be home in the US , not in Japan . He should feel at home there?

-2 ( +6 / -8 )

Rad? Ladd? as in Alan Ladd. Dude? Deud? Gaijin crimes are rare in Japan that American became crime headline. He could be some kind of American. Japanese LEA caught very quickly. He probablu on a list of criminal database.

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

@Alphaape: You wrote excellent analysis, I wrote some kind of American but I agree with you.

0 ( +4 / -4 )

I was going to say the D in his name is for Dumbass, Dropkick, Dimwit, or something simillar, either way lock his dumbass up and then throw him out of the country.

A real loser unemployed, and no fixed abode, too dumb or too lazy to get a real job and run a real abode.

I wonder if this group is also responsible for the raft of motorcycle thefts lately.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Who cares... He is part of a Car Thief Gang.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Dude or Jude? Lad Jude would still be an odd name...

0 ( +1 / -1 )

They will deport him soon and im sure he speak in his own language ... pretending he don't understand nihongo?

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

An unemployed American of no fixed address?? Even before I saw his name I smelled a fish that had been dead for millenia.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

@Sensato No way The Dude is a Car Thief! He is not even called Lebowski.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Kick that Idiot American out of the Country!

Why do we have to put heavy emphasis on his nationality? I can already see just by that outburst how bias can play a prejudicial part in this. How about just "Kick that guy out of the country?" Where he's from is irrelevant.

3 ( +6 / -3 )

Imprison and then deport him, banning him from ever returning to Japan.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Let him gooo, let him gooooooo!

1 ( +3 / -2 )

Obviously he is not homeless! He just don't have registered address or is not telling the police where he lives. No matter the nationality he had a "well paid" job as part of the car-theft gang.

And think if something like this had happened in your country wouldn't media start with stating it was foreigner?

5 ( +5 / -0 )

And think if something like this had happened in your country wouldn't media start with stating it was foreigner?

I think it's the JT that's come up with the headline because other Japanese media headlines do not start with the word American. Other J-news says the man who stole the car with 2 children in the backseat was arrested. and in the content of the news, they mention his nationality. JT used the word American in the headline because it'd be more catchy for JT readers.

12 ( +13 / -1 )

Unlikely a US citizen would be living here with no visas ( tracking US citizens entering and leaving is quite strict ) and stealing a car would be the weirdest thing ever...

1 ( +3 / -2 )

Doesn't matter in Japan. Even if you have Japanese legal resident or citizenship, you will always be a gaijin (American, Chinese, Korean, etc.) and news will report as such.

Actually not really. They often don't mention when someone is a Korean or Chinese, but you find out when they say the name and its not a normal Japanese name. It even seems like they go out of their way to not give them a bad image.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Japanese news sources say that at least one of the three men is a member of an organized crime group that is part of the Inagawa-kai (稲川会) syndicate, Japan's third-largest yakuza group with operations mainly in Tokyo and Yokohama.

This story is but one example of what I consider to by sloppy reporting by Japanese-language journalists in this country.

It looks glaringly obvious that the police have yet to ascertain the true identity of "Rad Dude," yet the way the Japanese-language media reports it is that the suspect has been identified as "D Thompson" and that he is an American. The media should have made that clear — the subject identified himself as "D Thompson," and he is allegedly an American national.

5 ( +6 / -1 )

Thanks a lot you piece of sh**, D. Thompson. This society already thinks most foreigners are criminals. Now, you just helped to further perpetuate the lie. A$$hole!

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

"43-year-old American man on suspicion of stealing a car with two children in the back seat from the parking lot of a convenience store in Ome, Tokyo, on June 15."

Ome is near Yokota Air Base. Many Americans and foreigners live in Ome. Yokota Airbase provides housing assistance to Americans in Ome, Hamura, Fussa, Tachikawa, and other nearby places.

Looks like he's facing GTA and kidnapping, and child endangerment.

The base, JN cops, and Embassy already know his ethicity, whether they release such info is up to them.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

Police quoted the suspect, identified as D Thompson, unemployed and of no fixed address, as saying that as soon as he noticed the children, he pulled the car over as soon as he could and fled the scene, Fuji TV reported

Won't someone please think of the children?

Actually I'm quite serious about this. We're concentrating on the wrong part of the story. Thankfully happy ending. Mr. Whoever and pals getting caught were just a bonus.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

At least the American had the decency to not harm the children when he noticed them.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

I'm not so offended this time at the title. This site caters predominantly to 'foreigners' anyway, I am guessing. If it were just Japanese arrested, it would not even be on JT's site. As an American I always find it horrifying when another American creates a bad image for us over here. The title piqued my interest for sure.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Since we reported the story when it first broke, we certainly would have reported it if the car thief were Japanese.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

@wowyz

Looks like he's facing GTA and kidnapping, and child endangerment.

Surely "kidnapping" involves a demand for ransome?

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

Surely "kidnapping" involves a demand for ransome?

Kidnapping would just be defined as taking someone to another place without their consent. Also it isn't confined to kids despite the name.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Not really hooktrunk2.

Tons of crime news involving only Japanese citizens have been posted with regularity on JT the past months, past year. Elderly Japanese committing crimes. Japanese stalkers. So on and so forth.

Certainly if a Japanese person committed a crime like this, it would also be on JT. So there is no anti foreigner/American bias on this website despite what some may think.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Good thing that two kids are safe.

It was basically parents' fault that they left the key in the car with their children inside. Lack of consideration that someone might notice it and drive it away.

However, I think, the parents might had thought two kids would suffer from the heat if they got the key and turned off the aircon. In fact, there were many cases in which children died of heatstroke in the car when their parents were away.

People just have to be careful as bad people are everywhere even in one of the safest countries, Japan.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

However, I think, the parents might had thought two kids would suffer from the heat if they got the key and turned off the aircon. In fact, there were many cases in which children died of heatstroke in the car when their parents were away

They should have also being thinking about one of the kids climbing up front and putting the car into gear . . . or someone coming for the kids rather than the car. There is no benefit of the doubt to be given here.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

**Asahi Newspaper reports his name as "トンプソン・ラッド・デュード," or "Rad Dude Thompson."

Obviously, this guy has no identification and is playing games with the police. This certainly raises doubts as to whether he provided a false nationality as well.

Here is the link: http://www.asahi.com/articles/ASG6K3VXNG6KUTIL014.html**

I can't help but smirk. The cops nailed this guy and he's playing with them. Is he scum for car theft? Yep but the cops here reply on confessions and this guy is not going to roll over and give up anything.

As for the question about the yaks working with foreigners, it is well known that they work with the Russians when it comes to cars. There are also plenty of folks from the Middle East work in the business as well. You have to have someone on the otherside to offload and sell these cars.

-3 ( +2 / -5 )

What about the idiot parents leaving two young children in an unlocked car and the keys in the ignition? They had to go into the shop? Really? You see this kind of neglect all the time, most of the cars in any car park has unaccompanied little kids in them. Why don't they take them in the shop with them?

0 ( +6 / -6 )

Readers, please refrain from insulting the parents.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I also feel that the parents were careless. If there were 2 parents present ( as implied by the article) then why was it necessary for BOTH to go into the store at the same time and leave the kids alone in the car with the keys in the ignition? In some countries such as the US, this is actually a crime nowadays and considered to be child abuse/neglect. As for the thief being an unemployed & homeless American, well I'll leave others to comment on that....

5 ( +6 / -1 )

Is there any proof this guys is really American, and didn't just say he was? Was there a reason they linked him to the two other car thieves other than the fact that they WERE car thieves?

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Sounds like it was a pretty easy GTA to pull off with the keys in the ignition. Not sure I see the link with the other two blokes. Also is there any detail on how he was identified and tracked down?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

So what if the headline points out that the thief was American. I would expect any country to announce that if a crime was carried out by a foreigner it would be reported as such. Hardly a Japanese trait. Had a car been stolen by an American in the UK with kids in the back you can bet that's how it would have been reported.

Had this car thief been a British dirtbag I certainly wouldn't get on my high horse about it.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Wouldn't they have Dude's fingerprints?

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Why does Nationality matter?

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Headline should be: "Three men arrested over theft of auto with children in the back seat - two Japanese and one American"

Moderator: That would be incorrect as only the American stole the car.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Surely "kidnapping" involves a demand for ransome? ;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;

Kidnapping often do not involve ransom demand.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Thanks a lot. Seriously we have hard enough time proving we get to be there without another one adding to the list of why we should not.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

DisillusionedJun. 19, 2014 - 07:30AM JST I'm kind of disgusted the headline starts with the person's foreign nationality, but the other two arrested are Japanese. >It is exactly this kind of prejudice that is gonna stop Japan becoming a globalised nation.

Newspapers here report the nationality of a criminal if they are not US citizens. And I think we a pretty "globalized".

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

"Dude... where's my car?" (Crime Boss to Dude after the event. )

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Well, this Dude doesn't abide.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Has there been any follow up on this story? Did they actually determine if he was indeed an American?

1 ( +1 / -0 )

I wonder what kind of visa D Thompson has. Specialist in House Invasion and Theft perhaps.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Hey, he's got fingerprints. And you have to give a finger print when you enter the country. Beyond that, Interpol and the FBI would run his prints if asked. This guy's identity can't be that hard to determine.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Seems to me h e left a jokingly message inside the car.

It is not his real name. Rad Dude Thompson

0 ( +0 / -0 )

He's a car thief working with Japanese car thieves. If he's working with them, then can he really be "unemployed"? ;-)

American, Canadian, Zulu, it doesn't matter. Employed or unemployed, it doesn't matter. Homeless or living in a mansion (the English meaning, not the Japanese meaning), it doesn't matter. He's a car thief. THAT'S what matters. The only props I'll give this guy is for bailing out of the car after only a couple of kilometers due to the kids. He COULD have kept driving and disposed of the witnesses in a much harsher manner.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Nothing wrong with the title... JT reported it in a factual manner. The guy is a scum for committing crime in a country that is not his. I'm just glad that he left the children without harming them. Having said that it's a shame that the parents left the children alone in the car. They should take more care and learn from this incident

0 ( +0 / -0 )

From our comments we seem to be showing that Americans self-esteem is compromised or just low. People from all countries have the potential to do bad things. Most news are about Japanese and you don't read of any Japanese saying, "Why did they mention that he's Japanese?" It's time to grow up!

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

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