crime

Man gets 2 years in prison for assaulting 17-year-old boy who asked him to stop smoking on train

33 Comments

The Utsunomiya District Court in Tochigi Prefecture on Tuesday sentenced a 29-year-old man to two years in prison after he was convicted of assaulting a 17-year-old boy who asked him to stop smoking on a train.

According to the court ruling, the incident occurred aboard a train operating between Suzumenomiya and Jichi Medical University stations on the JR Utsunomiya Line at around noon on Jan 23, Kyodo News reported. The defendant, Kazuma Miyamoto, a restaurant employee, was smoking an e-cigarette. The boy, a high school student, approached Miyamoto and asked him to stop smoking.

At the time, the boy was with four classmates. After he asked Miyamoto to stop smoking, Miyamoto stood toe to toe with the boy who pushed him back. Miyamoto then started punching and kicking the boy while his classmates tried to break them apart.

When the train arrived at Jichi Medical University Station, Miyamoto starting hitting the boy again once they were on the platform. The boy sustained serious injuries, including a fracture to his right cheek.

Miyamoto fled the scene at Jichi Medical University Station by hopping onto a train. However, he was arrested at around midnight in Utsunomiya.

© Japan Today

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33 Comments
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2 years not enough.

23 ( +33 / -10 )

This is why people don't get involved in Japan. You never know what kind of psycho you are chastizing.

2 years seems a bit light for a serious assault on a minor.

28 ( +39 / -11 )

2 years is nothing. That older guy should have known better. Thank goodness that student's mates got involved.

20 ( +26 / -6 )

2 years of Karma in prison I am sure he will learn his lesson. Other inmates don't like older people harming youths

2 ( +13 / -11 )

Give that kid a medal or at least waive off all of his assignments for the rest of the year. Heroism like this in Japan is rare and we need more of it. I agree with the commenters, this guy should serve more time or do a lot of hard labor. Smoking is banned in trains. I guess the guy's pride got trampled when a teenager called him out.

16 ( +26 / -10 )

Maybe 10 years would have been more justified.

-9 ( +5 / -14 )

this is why people do not confront strangers when they see something bad in public. the victim get hospitalized and the attacker gets only a few years of prison and that's it. again very 表面的な対応

-3 ( +7 / -10 )

Something vaguely similar happened to me when a british punk was smoking on the yamanote line and I told him there is no smoking the the trains in japan.

Naturally he had words to say and I just stood my ground and he didn't like getting showed up so he got off at the next stop. Strangely enough, once he exited the train and glared through the window at me and he flashed a switchblade.

Didn't see that coming.

-6 ( +8 / -14 )

Simplify it.

Just give all smokers 2 years in prison.

But here's the kicker.

They can all smoke all they like in the joint.

Unlimited cigarettes.

The windows will all be bordered up of course.

Then that'll fit the crime.

-2 ( +8 / -10 )

In Japanese prisons smoking is restricted.

8 ( +12 / -4 )

Punishment is suitable in this case. The man needs to take anger management training more than being locked up. Society must move away from the punitive model of dealing with crime as it it is a lose-lose method for all involved.

-8 ( +1 / -9 )

This happened to an ex-military friend of mine, but with a very different ending. Let's just say that the 'smoker' in question regretted throwing that first punch like he'd never regretted anything before...

-1 ( +7 / -8 )

"The man needs to take anger management training more than being locked up." Yeah. He didn't simply violate the law. He created health problems for his fellow passengers. He physically assaulted a boy who begged him to stop smoking. This is more than a simply an issue of "anger management." The guy went out of his way to pollute the air of his fellow passengers, likely presuming in some twisted way that he was doing noting wrong. This sort of person is not rare.

I recall standing in line while waiting for a train. The guy in front of me starts to smoke. I politely ask him not to smoke as it is against regulations and the law. In return I get a cynical smile and smoke in my face. I then say, "I hate cigarette smoke!" That generally works because it is personal and not a matter law. Why that works is a mystery to me.

-7 ( +1 / -8 )

@DisillusionedToday 08:15 am JST

2 years seems a bit light for a serious assault on a minor.

For Assault, two years is the statutory maximum. The judge is taking it seriously, but the prosecutor didn't want to go for Injury so that's that.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

jeancolmarToday  11:18 am JST

"The man needs to take anger management training more than being locked up." Yeah. He didn't simply violate the law. He created health problems for his fellow passengers. He physically assaulted a boy who begged him to stop smoking. This is more than a simply an issue of "anger management." The guy went out of his way to pollute the air of his fellow passengers, likely presuming in some twisted way that he was doing noting wrong. This sort of person is not rare.

I recall standing in line while waiting for a train. The guy in front of me starts to smoke. I politely ask him not to smoke as it is against regulations and the law. In return I get a cynical smile and smoke in my face. I then say, "I hate cigarette smoke!" That generally works because it is personal and not a matter law. Why that works is a mystery to me.

Yes, what he did was 'terrible' but what good does locking people up do? How does it help the victim, how does it help the perpetrator and society at large? Nobody gains from the punitive model of crime resolution.

Yes, the man is a risk to society right now so must be taken out of contact for others while he is helped to better manage his impulses (which we all have in one form or another).

Prisons are archaic and useless and cause more harm than any good.

-9 ( +1 / -10 )

I'm really glad Miyamoto got some jail time. I thought he was going to get away with parole or something light.

What surprised me the most about the incident was how his four friends allowed their friend to have his face smashed in once on the platform. They broke it up in the train but then let their buddy get pummeled after that.

There's no way on Gods green earth me or my buddies would let one of us get beat up like that without us jumping in. That smoker was in the wrong.

0 ( +6 / -6 )

@ letsberealistic

Prisons are archaic and useless and cause more harm than any good.

Really? How about in regards to the guy that murdered Abe-san? Got a "good" alternative to prison for that one? Ok, maybe the comparison is a bit far reaching, so let's hear your "better" alternative to jail time for this punk. And 'let's be realistic' about the data that shows your way is better.

-5 ( +3 / -8 )

Although I don’t like tobacco or cigars, does an E Cigarette even produce any exhaust, so to speak?

Maybe just reporting the guy would have been a better option?

-1 ( +6 / -7 )

Ken HolcombToday  01:38 pm JST

@ letsberealistic

Prisons are archaic and useless and cause more harm than any good.

Really? How about in regards to the guy that murdered Abe-san? Got a "good" alternative to prison for that one? Ok, maybe the comparison is a bit far reaching, so let's hear your "better" alternative to jail time for this punk. And 'let's be realistic' about the data that shows your way is better.

Yes, anywhere except a prison. I don't have a 'way', I'm just saying prison is one of the dumbest human inventions.

-8 ( +0 / -8 )

I told a smoker to stop on the train. He tried to hit me, but I pushed the emergency button and at the next train station, three staff dragged him off.

2 ( +8 / -6 )

Beating up on a minor and running away... keep it classy dude!

@WA4TKG

Although I don’t like tobacco or cigars, does an E Cigarette even produce any exhaust, so to speak?

Whether it produces "exhaust" or not is not the point here. There is no smoking on the trains PERIOD. No one should be subjected to have breathe in whatever is contained in those e-cigarattes. Also, keep in mind that we're still in a pandemic here, and cases are on uptick again, so he should keep that hole on his face covered up so he doesn't spread diseases.

0 ( +6 / -6 )

They should make the cigarette smoker chain smoke for two years in a lighted cell.

The worst thing about Japan is all the tobacco smoking everywhere.

It used to be impossible to find a restaurant ,bar or coffee shop that's tobacco free.

It is a little better than it was.

Smoking tobacco is just plain stupid !

Intelligent and kind considerate type people don't smoke.

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

Sounds like some wannabe gangster... or he's not just smoking an e-cig. Explosive violence like that isn't normal

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Any country you live, mind your own business in all public places.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

He should get at least 10 years!

for smoking on the train and hitting a teenager….

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

You never know what's going on with any stranger. Especially if they are breaking some kind of rule, they are already signaling they may not be predictable. What carries the heavier disrespect someone smoking an e-cigarette on a train or a young kid walking up to an unpredictable adult smoking the e-cigarette. Stay safe if no one's life is in danger mind your own or something like this can happen. The guy should have ignored the kid, on the flip side what's to say a young man with such boldness wouldn't have escalated it himself to show off for his buddies but at the least the e-cigarette guy could have walked away then and the kid wouldn't have been hurt. Fyi one of the reason e cigarettes are there was originally for people to be able to smoke without bothering others, but seems this little detail has been missed in Japan. Everyone need to take a chill pill as they say.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Man gets 2 years in prison for assaulting 17-year-old boy

Yawn...

who asked him to stop smoking on train

I will now click your article.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

First off if the boy was so concerned about smoking he should have reported the train staff. Second he shouldn't have push the guy who was smoking if you are going to make a point stand your distance because you never know what is in the head of the person you are telling what they can and can not do. Yes in Japan people see things and don't say anything perhaps because it is not their business and they don't want to get involved. A lot of the posters are saying the punishment should have been longer. Perhaps this is why people don't report because they know little or nothing is going to happen. The best thing to do is contact the people in charge thats what they get paid for. Its not worth it to get your jaw broken unless someone is endangering someone else and it is life threatening.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Wow.... impressive....in Italy don't give even 5 years I'm prison if you kill someone..... Japan is a serious country....2 years is not a short time as everyone is commenting here.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Yes, what he did was 'terrible' but what good does locking people up do? How does it help the victim, how does it help the perpetrator and society at large? Nobody gains from the punitive model of crime resolution.

It took a violent criminal off the streets for two years. That benefits all of us. We all gain from this punitive model of crime resolution.

And anyone saying 2 years is not a long time, think back to what you were doing two years ago, and how much stuff you've done since then. Now imagine all of that two years was was spent contained by four walls.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Hew deserved 20 years.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

StrangerlandJuly 20  11:40 pm JST

Yes, what he did was 'terrible' but what good does locking people up do? How does it help the victim, how does it help the perpetrator and society at large? Nobody gains from the punitive model of crime resolution.

It took a violent criminal off the streets for two years. That benefits all of us. We all gain from this punitive model of crime resolution.

And anyone saying 2 years is not a long time, think back to what you were doing two years ago, and how much stuff you've done since then. Now imagine all of that two years was was spent contained by four walls.

Yes, and that is the issue. The majority of the public lack the intelligence and awareness of human nature to find better solutions to crime than just throwing people in a box. Human evolution is a slow process to be sure.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I encountered a similar psycho in my local Super-Market store, he was with a bunch of friends, tall guy (for Japanese) long lousy bleached hair - looked semi-drugged / slow moving / stupid-like , after passing through the checkout, he walked back and banged on the plastic shield between the assistant and himself, and started complaining, it was a bit like watching one of those Yak movies, so I guess he'd been watching too many of them, he then started raising his voice accordingly, and getting a bit more stroppy... you know the slow, fashion with raise intonations; I was standing at the checkout right behind him, at the time, and becoming a bit concerned over what was going on.... COVID proximity, etc. His friends soon noticed I was watching him closely, and them too, and maybe - perhaps, as such, they decided to scarper, abandoning him .... I don't know why... ;) But anyway, the Checkout assistant was brilliant, didn't react, but coldly talked to this guy without emotion, and called in her manager to assist who went on to deal with the situation, again calmly - clearly, they've been trained on how to deal with "difficult" persons.

Standing back from a situation, is sometimes the best thing to do, rather than getting involved, you just need to make the right judgement - when to "assist" and when not to; simply getting involved could make a bad situation even worse and involve more causalities, or lead to property damage that you could be personally held to account for. When in doubt, step away, call 110, and ask for the Police to assist with a potential situation, also note, taking a video may bring attention to yourself and/or even make the situation even worse - so be wary of doing so - also, don't call 110 for minor things.. read the Aesops fable - "The Boy who called Wolf".... so, some things to think about...

As for this Psycho, I later found out, that the Yaks within the region, have recently descended to my small part of the World to thrash out a new Leadership , after one of theirs passed away - so who knows whether or not he was one of them. As long as they leave me alone, I'm fine.

Be safe. Think before you act.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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