On May 28th, Twitter user @influencer_com_ uploaded a video that shows a man in a suit fleeing from two high school girls shouting "don't run away!", racing across a train platform of Akabane Station in Tokyo. As he makes his way across the platform, a bystander suddenly sticks out his foot, causing him to trip and stumble, before the schoolgirls catch up to him on the platform escalator. A girl has come forward and said the man had touched her inappropriately on the train.

The next day, a panel on daily morning news program Mezamashi TV discussed the video and the incident, Nico Nico News reports. According to the panel, the man was apprehended by station staff following his stumble, and subsequently admitted to groping before being arrested on suspicion of forced indecency.

The high school boy who filmed the incident was also interviewed. "I simply felt like I had to film it," he said. "You can call it a sense of justice, it could be evidence." He also added that the high school girl who came forward said that the man had touched her breast, and that she had been experiencing similar harassment for a month, and after growing angry, decided to apprehend her assailant.

A large amount of discussion regarding the incident, however, has centered on the man who nonchalantly tripped the groper--namely whether or not his actions are classified as illegal. Yahoo Japan consulted with Ryuji Nishiguchi of the Kobe Marine Law Office. Nishiguchi noted that while the bystander's actions could be assessed as illegal, if they are determined to be in the aide of a fleeing criminal, he would be legally protected. The difficulty is in determining the awareness of a crime being committed at the time of the tripping. A panel member on Mezamashi TV supposed that the bystander would likely not be prosecuted.


By - grape Japan editorial staff.