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Japanese police officers increasingly forgetting their guns in public restrooms

19 Comments
By SoraNews24

Have you ever used a public toilet, and when finished, forgot to zip up your pants or tuck your shirt in properly? It’s pretty embarrassing, but now imagine that instead of those things, you leave behind a lethal weapon in an area where people with extremely short-fuses are known to patronize.

That a level of embarrassment is felt by a growing number of police officers across Japan who have left their firearms hanging up in toilet stalls. The most recent incident took place on Jan 24 when a 26-year-old officer with the Narita Airport Police left his belt with handcuffs and a loaded handgun in the airport’s employee restroom.

Luckily, it was recovered by another worker at the airport only four minutes later and nothing came of the misplacement. The officer explained by saying, “I forgot,” and the airport police issued an apology saying they would take steps to prevent this from happening again.

At least that was in a lavatory with somewhat limited access. However, only a week earlier a 31-year-old officer left his belt, with loaded pistol attached, in the restroom of a 7-Eleven in Okazaki, Aichi Prefecture, proving once again that you really can get anything at a 7-Eleven in Japan.

This time the gun was picked up by a customer who gave it to the staff, and the officer returned about 25 minutes later to retrieve the weapon. The Aichi Prefectural Police issued a statement saying, “We sincerely apologize for giving the people of this prefecture cause for anxiety.”

About a month before that, a 49-year-old lieutenant with the Machida Department of the Tokyo Metropolitan Police left a gun with five rounds inside in a convenience store restroom. It too was discovered by a customer and returned to police custody about an hour and 45 minutes later.

This was about three months after a sergeant with the Hyogo Prefectural police was forced to resign for leaving her belt, with cuffs and loaded gun attached, in the women’s room of a train station in Aioi City. At least she had a good excuse: she was extremely busy moonlighting as a sex worker at the time.

And then there’s also the officer who left his gun in an Itami Airport restroom when the G20 summit rolled into Osaka last June. At that time, the media were wondering why this was happening so often. Tokyo Shimbun interviewed a former officer who said that the main reason for removing the guns is that because they are so heavy they would drag the pants down to the floor with it, which we can all agree is pretty gross in a public restroom.

Another officer told Tokyo Shimbun that they avoid the problem by never using toilets outside of police stations or koban (remote police offices around cities). However, that’s far from foolproof and many in Japan wonder if there isn’t a better way:

“This is really getting popular with cops.”

“At least it’s usually employee toilets.”

“We already strap the guns to them. What more can we do?”

“It looks like security is all set for the Olympics.”

“All these people are getting fired, right?”

“In airports too?! That’s terrorist central.”

“Do the police employ first-graders?”

“Either stop carrying guns on their belts or give them shoulder holsters.”

Source: Chiba Nippo, Mainichi Shimbun, Tokyo Shimbun, Jiji.com

Read more stories from SoraNews24.

-- Police officer found to be sex worker after leaving her gun in a public restroom

-- Police officer arrested for repeatedly clogging women’s toilets, watching them get upset about it

-- Wakayama cop loses fully-loaded automatic handgun on the street while guarding PM

© SoraNews24

©2020 GPlusMedia Inc.

19 Comments
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It looks like security is all set for the Olympics.”

Love this comment!

11 ( +11 / -0 )

They have more than one guns.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Why police in Japan need a gun to begin with is a mystery let alone a flipping 1940's style revolver. Guess they've got to solve those mamachari crimes somehow.

4 ( +6 / -2 )

Have you ever used a public toilet, and when finished, forgot to zip up your pants or tuck your shirt in properly? It’s pretty embarrassing, but now imagine that instead of those things, you leave behind a lethal weapon 

These things are not even remotely related. I forgot to zip up my pants is not the same as I forgot a weapon that can be used to harm or kill someone.

@Capuchin

Why police in Japan need a gun to begin with is a mystery

While it may not happen as frequently as some places, shootings still happen in Japan. There have already been several shootings this year. Being unarmed when facing an armed assailant isn't going to help police officers much.

2 ( +5 / -3 )

the NPA should give those negligent police officers a shoulder holster and replace their hip holster for their firearm instead so they won't need to take it off when they're using the toilet. Never a good idea to leave a loaded firearm in a public place, even in Japan

3 ( +4 / -1 )

This one takes the cake!!!!

Police officer found to be sex worker after leaving her gun in a public restroom

6 ( +7 / -1 )

Perhaps, they need to update both their protocols and the equipment they use. They are still wearing 'Batman Utility Belts' with six-shooter revolvers from the 1960's that must weight 10-15 kilos. Come to think of it, I don't know why Japanese police cary guns at all. The only times they get used are on themselves or to shoot aggressive dogs. Obviously, normal beat cops do not need to carry guns. Just dump them and only have special response teams carrying guns, like they do in many other countries. There has also been a few cases where Japanese beat cops have had their guns taken from them in a scuffle. It seems the dangers of Japanese beat cops carrying guns are far greater than if they don't carry them at all.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

This article made my day! :D

4 ( +4 / -0 )

I would love to find one !

5 ( +5 / -0 )

loaded gun .... At least she had a good excuse: she was extremely busy moonlighting as a sex worker at the time.

Was trying to figure out how that could be an excuse, then realized she must've had other loaded guns on her mind.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

No problem losing your gun, Japan is a safe country, LOL

5 ( +5 / -0 )

I bet they didn't forget their iphones/smartphones..

5 ( +5 / -0 )

You don't want to bust a cap as you cr-p.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

It's crazy. In the UK, a country where police DO need guns, they routinely don't have them. Yet in Japan, a country where they are really not necessary, they have them.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

“Do the police employ first-graders?”

This was good. And yes, they do.

Tokyo Shimbun interviewed a former officer who said that the main reason for removing the guns is that because they are so heavy they would drag the pants down to the floor with it, which we can all agree is pretty gross in a public restroom.

> > "they are so heavy.........."

Three things here.

A. It's called a belt, google it.

B. That's what she said.

C. How about you guys go number 2 before you leave the house in the morning and as soon as you come home like normal people? If it's an emergency, idk, how about NOT FORGETTING a lethal weapon in a public place that can be traced back to you?

3 ( +3 / -0 )

I would be worried if there was really a scientifically-proven increase in forgetfulness. That there have been cases like this over recent years, not only in Japan, I am well aware.

To forget is human, to forget your gun in a public place is embarrassing; especially where it is drilled into everyone in Kindergarten how serious it is to commit 忘れ物 wasuremono, (forgetting to bring things to school, or lost and found).

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Simple solution would be to prohibit all Police Officers from using bathrooms alone. Their partners should either accompany them into the bathroom (not the stall, ok?) or stand out side and wait. Not only can the partner check that the belt has not been forgotten, but also reduces a risk as a LEO alone in a bathroom can be vulnerable.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

this is my rifle this is my gun...

0 ( +0 / -0 )

with six-shooter revolvers from the 1960's that must weight 10-15 kilos.

Ok, even if you've never handled a gun in your life, there is no way you can believe a pistol has ever weighed 20 pounds...

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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