Fukuoka Prefectural Police have arrested a 73-year-old man for the crime of eating a grape from a storefront.
The incident occurred at approximately 9:50 a.m. on the morning of Oct 3 outside a greengrocer in Higashi Ward, Fukuoka City. The suspect allegedly walked past the front of the store, pinched off a single grape valued at 55 yen, and ate it. Just then, he was apprehended by the store manager, who had been secretly watching, and turned over to police.
Fifty-five yen for one grape might seem quite expensive depending where you’re from, but it’s not uncommon in Japan.
The store manager had been tipped off to the crime because for about half a year leading up to the arrest, discarded grape peels were repeatedly found on the pavement in front of the store.
Police are currently investigating the suspect’s connection to the past incidents of grape peels found on the sidewalk as well. If found guilty, he could be responsible for damages running upwards of 1,000 yen.
The suspect also denies the charges, saying he “wasn’t stealing” at the time. Other readers of the news, however, were far less sympathetic.
“Wasted his bright future for just one grape…”
“A crime’s a crime, regardless of how much it is.”
“He was ruining the entire bunch by stealing one grape. Throw the book at him.”
“I think due to the nature of his crimes he should be tried as a child.”
“This is like something from an ethics textbook.”
Whether you abhor the suspect’s behavior or not, everyone can agree it was the peeling of the grapes that did him in. In the end he was allegedly a victim of habit, as peeling grapes before eating is a common custom in Japan, often because the varieties of grapes sold typically have thick skins.
Sadly many people just don’t realize that for various reasons, such as added nutrition, delectable texture, and more efficient larceny, eating grape skins is recommended by nine out of ten doctors and degenerates alike.
Source: Asahi Shimbun, Hachima Kiko
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