Youth in toothpick prank videos sent to juvenile correctional facility


A 19-year-old youth who uploaded a series of prank videos on YouTube in January, including one in which he inserted a toothpick into a snack food in a supermarket, was sent to a moderate security juvenile correctional facility.

A judge at the Tokyo Family Court issued the ruling, saying that time in a correctional institution was an appropriate punishment, Fuji TV reported Thursday. He had been charged with forcible obstruction of a business.

The youth was placed on a nationwide wanted list after he inserted toothpicks and other foreign objects into snack foods in supermarkets, as well as engaging in shoplifting -- acts which he had filmed and posted on YouTube.

He admitted committing the acts, saying his intention had been to "encourage revision of the juvenile act." In one of his YouTube videos, he had boasted that because he was a minor, the police wouldn’t be able to do anything to him.

Police were able to identify the youth after examining a Jan 5 video shot at a convenience store in Musashino, Tokyo, in which he took a bottle of iced tea, drank from it and left the store without paying for it. Then on Jan 14, he posted a "Declaration of Evasion," and subsequently posted additional provocative contents, declaring the police to be "incompetent."

The case came to light after a video was uploaded to YouTube on Jan 11, in which someone is seen stabbing a toothpick into the package of a snack food at a supermarket in Chofu, Tokyo. The video began with the man’s voice saying “Are you all well? This is ‘prank at the supermarket’ round 2!” He then took a toothpick and walked up to a display filled with dry goods and snacks. He used the toothpick to pierce the top of one of the packages, pushed it in and then exited the store without purchasing anything.

That video received more than 500,000 views in three days.

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In one of his YouTube videos, he had boasted that because he was a minor, the police wouldn’t be able to do anything to him.

Oops. Now he knows better.

7 ( +7 / -0 )

500,000 people watched that? It just goes to show people will watch any old rubbish on YouTube.

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

community service and a fine would be a better punishment i.m.o. Why waste more tax money locking him up?

-2 ( +3 / -5 )

He is 19 and rehabilitated at 20??? I agree a fine and community service is where he could really reflect on his crime.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Not sure, but putting anything like toothpicks, rice balls etc..sounds just disgusting and dangerous, so I am happy this nut case will be put behind bars for crime.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

is 19 juvie age?

2 ( +2 / -0 )

What a twat.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

hmm teenage college, he will learn to do it better next time

1 ( +1 / -0 )

I agree that all that stuff done by this youth are punishable (community service sounds better than a detention facility), However, it seems that they are missing the point, doing all that stuff and put it on youtube was to call the attention to the system's flaws, at 19, he is a minor, and all that stuff (shoplifting, altering products, eating stuff and not paying for it, etc) are petty crimes that often go unpunished in this society.

As I see it, he only opened the eyes of the people to look better at the system. How many videos uploaded before he was detained? (how many crimes did he have to commit before he was punished?)

And yes, it would be better for him to do community service, let's use all that youth energy into something valuable

0 ( +0 / -0 )

slumdog: "Oops. Now he knows better."

Not really. Since his so-called purpose was to encourage the revision of the juvenile act, and he's simply charged as a child would be and will go to a reformatory for a few months, I'd say "they can do nothing" is pretty apt and on the mark. If it were only for 'obstruction of business' and the convenience store incidents (plural), I'd say the judge is correct and the punishment fitting, but given that he caused a NATION-WIDE manhunt, which is how much tax money?, and also threatened to kill someone outside a train station in Fukuoka, he should have been charged as a result and told, "There, you wanted to see us do something (beyond the usual treat you as a child), we have!"

0 ( +2 / -2 )

13? Maybe. 19? WTF!

1 ( +1 / -0 )

I am pleased that they sent him to a "juvenile" correction facility. In America, we try hard to convict our children of adult crimes (look up Jordan Brown, age 11, sentenced to life without parole (youngest in the world); Cristian Fernandez, age 12, tried as an adult, plea bargain saved his life). Even though he is 19, he clearly has an immature mindset defining his motives and would likely benefit from a system that is designed to teach children to be become better young adults.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Why waste more tax money locking him up?

Oh, they don't just lock you up in Japan. They reform you.

This kid is coming out a different person....

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

What a jerk.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Please let me finished my opinion and read it until end. We have been living in Westernized Countries for more then half of our age. I have met and talk with young Japanese and they thought Westernized culture is same as they seen in pictures (Movies) and they wanted to copy it. They though it’s cool. I told them we live as what we live in Japan and we must be living as law abiding citizen. Westernized Countries’ law doesn't allow living like Lawless what they seen in Western Movies and Videos on the Net but they seem to be disagreed with me. Now I saw many young Japanese are copying bad behavior of Actors and Actresses from Movies and Internet Videos and News. No one can live like without job and money like Actor and Actress in movie.

I want to say to our fellow Japanese young peoples, US or other Western Countries’ Law or Government do not allow bad behaving what they have seen in Movie, Video and Internet. Movie is just imagination and creating of director and individual person. It does not advocate you can do what you like. It’s unrealistic and just imagination. On Internet, it’s just opportunity of peoples who want 15 minutes of fame. Please, live like Japanese and appreciate Japanese culture. I don’t want to discuss about whether some of peoples living in Westernized countries were morally corrupted or socially disoriented community.

We are very sad when we read about today young Japanese are copying and behaving like Western Movies and from Net Videos. It doesn’t make you as hero for putting toothpick into a snack food package. To all young Japanese, if you were boring and then learn something it benefit for society and please don’t do like idiot. People who has brain does not do stupid thing.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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