crime

Police step up patrols at train stations

77 Comments

Police have stepped at patrols at a number of busy train stations around Japan following a series of attacks on trains and station premises over the past few months.

Police officers and security dogs have been deployed at major stations such as Tokyo, Shibuya, Shinjuku, Yokohama and Shin-Osaka.

More officers have also been assigned to platforms at subway stations.

The increased security was implemented after a man was arrested on suspicion of attempting to start a fire on a shinkansen (bullet train) from Hiroshima bound for Kagoshima-Chuo Station last week. That followed an Oct 31 incident in which a man wearing a costume reminiscent of Batman villain the Joker injured 17 people, including one seriously, during the attack on a Keio Line train in Tokyo.

In August, a man stabbed and slashed 10 passengers on an Odakyu Electric Railway commuter train in the capital's Setagaya Ward.

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77 Comments
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Past due. Hope they have enough coverage.

2 ( +8 / -6 )

will they do it forever ?

5 ( +11 / -6 )

An APB had been put out for anyone dressed like The Joker

10 ( +16 / -6 )

I guess the Joker is their training video.

2 ( +8 / -6 )

It seems so futile to amp up security on trains because one weirdo dressed up in a costume tried to cause trouble and couldn’t even kill anyone, why don’t they increase security in old peoples homes and manga headquarters too? Those places suffered far worse crimes.

-5 ( +8 / -13 )

I feel more secure if they actually post at least 1 police officer inside the trains and not just within the station itself. Attack did happen inside the trains itself. Personally i think they should train a few undercover ones and put them in certain spots. Kinda like sky marshal in some airlines.

0 ( +11 / -11 )

Personally i think they should train a few undercover ones and put them in certain spots. Kinda like sky marshal in some airlines.

Even if they do that inside train it will take their personnel, it's not only happen in Tokyo area.

https://japantoday.com/category/crime/woman-injured-in-knife-attack-at-japan's-fukushima-station

4 ( +6 / -2 )

whack-a-mole

9 ( +12 / -3 )

A safety officer with adequate training to be stationed in each carriage provided by the transport company you purchased your train ticket with.

By law the transportation company should be required to provide a safety environment for its customers and not rely on local law enforcement.

-2 ( +8 / -10 )

If Japan could encourage more first responders training among the younger generation that could potentially help to stop the rising of violent crimes .

-4 ( +5 / -9 )

Japanese police need better uniforms. They always look like they just got some work clothes out of the bargain bin at Jusco and sewed a few patches on.

8 ( +15 / -7 )

Dogs can be trained to sniff out knives, mallets, hammers, and awls?

18 ( +24 / -6 )

J police gambate ne.

-11 ( +3 / -14 )

Always a big show after a few crimes. Too late at the gate as always.

6 ( +12 / -6 )

Japan is no longer the safe place it was. Though, was it ever really?

-9 ( +9 / -18 )

That psychopathic attackers at train stations were very rare case. I don't hear such incidents everyday on news, maybe once a year. Such police patrol seem to be only week job. Police will not patrol after a week.

-4 ( +3 / -7 )

HiroToday  07:14 am JST

I feel more secure if they actually post at least 1 police officer inside the trains and not just within the station itself. 

Totally agree. But unrealistic in terms of manpower and resources. Even in New York the only time that took place was in the year or so following 911.

0 ( +4 / -4 )

Probably a good thing. I saw a few cops and 3 German shepherds at ikebukuro station yesterday.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

While in France, I felt less secure after seeing French soldiers carrying guns around train stations. But then I find it worrying to see anyone carrying a gun anywhere.

I hope Japan does not become like countries I have visited and lived in where armed security forces, public or private, or even private citizens are common sights. In the US being out in public and near a person, in uniform or not, carrying a gun makes me feel less secure.

Gulf cities like Dubai, Abu. Dhabi and Doha tend to be fairly safe from violent crime, in part because there are so many under cover police everywhere. I do not like violent thugs, but do not think police states are the best answer to dealing with them. If Japan can continue keep guns away from the general public that would create a safer environment. As it is, I feel safe here in Japan, though remain aware that anything can happen, anywhere, especially around public transport facilities.

3 ( +7 / -4 )

People starting to pop. All the mental and social distancing was bound to have an effect. Watch for the next mental health crisis, it’s coming. Lot of empty shells walking around unfortunately. Very sad.

Why am I not surprised copycat crimes are a thing here too?

8 ( +9 / -1 )

So Police seem to think that people who are thinking to do something on a train will have a sign saying "I am about to commit a crime on a train" and thus easily identifiable? Last time the Joker guy walked right past a pair of Police officers, but they didn't stop him... What changed?

8 ( +9 / -1 )

Uniform looks heavy and how can they run to catch with those boots?

3 ( +5 / -2 )

I would feel much safer riding public transport in New Zealand or any northern European nation any day than on Tokyo public transport.

4 ( +6 / -2 )

@zichi Perhaps they couldn't catch you in their heavy boots.

It's good to see police walking around,rather than sat in kobans.

Next,enforce seatbelt, child seat laws,phone and traffic light offences, please.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Finally, some steps to prevent this madness. However, I think they should do a bag check when you enter the metro station.

That is the way to keep people safe.

-4 ( +2 / -6 )

Dogs can smell knives?

5 ( +6 / -1 )

The police must be really annoyed that they actually have to do some active policing for once.

13 ( +20 / -7 )

OxycodinToday 09:37 am JST

Dogs can smell knives?

Quick google says in London the police were unable to train dogs to find knives, and another article suggested it would be very difficult.

The dog is there to chase you down and maul you should you attempt to flee.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

" I think they should do a bag check when you enter the metro station."

and get tasers, and military grade mace.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Dogs might not be able to smell knives but dogs have a keen sense of people with bad intentions .

Dogs sense of smell is hundreds of times greater than a human and they detect pheromones that come from bad people.

And they don't spend all day online.

3 ( +7 / -4 )

Kyo wa heiwa dayo neToday  09:55 am JST

Dogs might not be able to smell knives but dogs have a keen sense of people with bad intentions .

Dogs sense of smell is hundreds of times greater than a human and they detect pheromones that come from bad people.

And they don't spend all day online.

Hilarious!

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

Uniform looks heavy and how can they run to catch with those boots?

Those are modern cop boots, they're pleather and soft rubber, more like tall sneakers really so they're not that heavy.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Finally, some steps to prevent this madness. However, I think they should do a bag check when you enter the metro station.

It'd take you an hour of waiting in line to get into the station.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Pictured: One suit & tie ‘salaryman’, perhaps well-prepared for another ‘knife & fire’ attack? - Seems to have brought his own folding step-ladder for climbing out windows when abruptly halted outside stations:

- Oct 31, ‘21: “The driver stopped the train 2-3 meters away from the designated stop, prevented the train car doors and the platform doors from opening. According to the Tokyo FD, some of the passenger seats had burned in the 6th car, where the fire was started. Police found a 2L plastic bottle appeared to contain an oil-like substance. In a backpack, investigators found 3-4 plastic bottles containing transparent liquid & several pesticides.”

The dogs may be trained for arson investigations to detect flammables, etc.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

This is so Japanese. Something happens and the paranoid people ask "what will the government do to make sure this doesn't happen again?" and so you get an increase in security that probably won't do anything other than shut the paranoid people up.

However, if the government was really serious about this problem, they should provide more support for mental illness. If this type of thing DOES happen again, the next step will probably be banning the sale of knives.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

The policemen are for show, but the dog means business. You misbehave on my train and I'll bite you.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

JR and the Police engaging in a little security theater is good for the moment heading into the winter holidays.

Afterwards, a division plain clothed police distributed along major ground domestic transportation routes would go a long way to containment of these outburst.

If not, a healthy compromise would be uniformed peace officers (like those old guys with arm bands)

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

A couple issues with some of the ideas presented.

“Japan should encourage civil first responders.” Problem with this is that civil first responders can get caught up in over reacting to a situation. On thing people never think about J police is how they well they are able to de-escalate many situation.

”Transportation companies should be required to have private security personnel on hand.” / This is essentially telling a business to pay for police through taxes and then pay again for their own security forces. Not a good precedent to set as businesses will want to pay less taxes for a police force not required to protect their (a business’s) interest.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Police step up patrols at train stations

Ahh, yes.

Reaction only AFTER the horrible incidents take place.

Precautions that should have been there from Day 1, in anticipation of danger.

And after the hype dies down after a couple of weeks or so, never to be seen again.

The Japanese protocol 101 on how to make it seems like changes are being made, when in reality it's just another farce.

Keep Japan from evolving guys, as usual.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

“Finally, some steps to prevent this madness. However, I think they should do a bag check when you enter the metro station.”

Too time consuming. It won’t just be cases of train delays, but also due to bag checks.

Mire personnel will be needed. You might as well deploy more security on trains.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

HiroToday  07:14 am JST

I feel more secure if they actually post at least 1 police officer inside the trains and not just within the station itself. 

Officers are on the trains as well. This morning I saw a couple of police officers on the Tokaido (Ueno-Tokyo) line train I used.

There are a lot of police officers in Japan so it’s good to put them into use.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

good move.thumbs up

-4 ( +0 / -4 )

Too time consuming. It won’t just be cases of train delays, but also due to bag checks.

Doesn't China do bag checks at the entrances of train stations?

They were the last time I was there.

Not a very good idea when you're traveling on a tight schedule.

My 2 cents.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

I don't necessarily begrudge the effort in theory, but it seems more for show than anything else. Airline checkpoints barely catch anything, I have (entirely by mistake) traveled on planes with knifes/razors before, and those are far more thorough than patrolling police.

Also what are the K9 units for? If it were a drug crackdown okay, but everything they are supposedly looking for wouldn't be helped by the dogs.

Good point is it should maybe help reduce response time when something does happen.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I am long enough here to know that this is not preventive but only part of an aftermath, when something severe happened, the police show overdoing presence, communities make more evening patrols, parents panic and take their kids by the hand bringing them to kindergarten or schools, all such activities. Then it slowly normalizes, the next big incident, accident or crime occurs and this cycle starts again from scratch.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Japan is great at tokenism.

How about some serious investment into mental health care, and a public debate into the causes and ways to prevent such attacks?

0 ( +4 / -4 )

How about some serious investment into mental health care

That would involve Japanese doctors actually having to study the latest medical research in English though....

-4 ( +4 / -8 )

A leavened response in light of recent incidents - a visible presence, even if purely psychological. Japan is and remains one of the safest countries on earth.

The very odd responses dovetail into a vapid understanding that typify individuals who are not actually wedded to the fabric of the culture and view Japan from outside the normative and are in no way integrated into the body social. It betrays a prejudice that prevents genuine understanding and instead imposes a largely foreign & presumptuous & arrogant take on a unique and somewhat unfathomable, but very civilized country.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

The dogs may be trained for arson investigations to detect flammables, etc.

Wouldn’t help if someone got aboard the Shinkansen with a couple of cans of hair spray and a Zippo.

(NB Don’t try this at home, kids!)

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

A lot of comments here are fear mongering… am wondering if any of those who made such comments actually live/lived in Japan and commute/commuter everyday. Tokyo is generally safe. Police presence is good but not at a level to show or mean that threat to our safety is everywhere, which IS NOT the case. We can’t really prevent weirdo’s act and it happens when it does… Most of us are not weirdos.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

What happened to video surveillance? I would trust that to j cops any day.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Tom San,

we are not China!

1 ( +1 / -0 )

More officers have also been assigned to platforms at subway stations.

Nice gesture, but they can not possibly patrol all stations all the time. Also, instead of this uniformed parade shown in the photo, patrols in civilian clothes would be preferrable. But maybe this is meant to pacifiy the public rather than to deter any potential murderer.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Having a more officious spectacle on view for the public is not going to solve the dire state of mental health in Japan,is it?

0 ( +3 / -3 )

If you, as a foreigner, face one of these freaks down, and act like you’re going to something, they’ll likely run away like a little girl

2 ( +3 / -1 )

we are not China!

we're getting there

0 ( +3 / -3 )

Stop saying "mentally ill," you're contributing to the marginalization of people with mental illnesses.

People with mental illnesses don't go about causing unprovoked violence.

A major factor in these incidents is social isolation and not having role to perform in society.

-3 ( +2 / -5 )

treble4punkToday  04:58 pm JST

Stop saying "mentally ill," you're contributing to the marginalization of people with mental illnesses.

People with mental illnesses don't go about causing unprovoked violence.

A major factor in these incidents is social isolation and not having role to perform in society.

Yes, that, and the thing we all suffer from in differing degrees; the habit of listening to an egocentric conditioned mind. We all need an awareness practice.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

A major factor in these incidents is social isolation and not having role to perform in society

Which can have an effect on mental health causing abberative behaviour…

-5 ( +0 / -5 )

LOVE that German Shep. LOVELY.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

My 4 year old GSD is a Japanese Police Dog Academy graduate. Rescued him from being euthanized after his previous owner passed away last February. A truly great dog.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

I believe under Japanese law you can legally carry a concealed knife. Carrying a knife with a locking blade, or a folding blade longer than 5.5 cm (around two inches), is illegal in Japan.

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

Looks like its that time of the year! As holidays come upon us so does the increase in depression and crime.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

Law abiding commuters need the right to carry arms for self defense.

The deployment of more officers is little more than a public relations move meant to temporarily allay public fear and increase reliance on government authority.

Remember, when danger of assault is seconds away, the best response that you can hope for is that police will arrive in under 10 minutes.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Law abiding commuters need the right to carry arms for self defense.

Ridiculous. Putting more weapons in the hands of the people is something only extremist Americans would suggest.

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

Remember, when danger of assault is seconds away, the best response that you can hope for is that police will arrive in under 10 minutes.

Eh? There are kobans in many stations. Responses can come in seconds.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

It only takes seconds for a stabbing to occur-game over.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

It only takes seconds for a stabbing to occur-game over.

So lets arm more people right?!

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Only naive dilettantes who have never been the victim of violent assault, or who have never had a loved one raped or killed would be content to rely on imaginary heroes to protect them.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Danielsan

Law abiding commuters need the right to carry arms for self defense.

No. Look up real-life videos of knife attacks. Typically, they are ambushes, where the victim does not know what is coming. Being armed or not makes no difference there. It is not like you are going to be challenged for a duel! Your suggestion makes no sense.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I want that dog after he retires. Lovely.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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