19,920 stalking cases reported in 2011, NPA says

TOKYO —

The National Police Agency said Thursday that 19,920 stalking cases were reported nationwide in 2012. The NPA said on its website that the figure was 36.3% up over 2011 and the highest number since the NPA started keeping records on stalking cases in 2000.

The NPA said arrests were made in 1,504 cases. Figures on the NPA site showed that 85.9% of the stalkers were men. More than 60% of incidents involved a current or former lover or separated spouse. The next biggest number involved acquaintances, followed by work colleagues.

The NPA came under intense pressure last year to tighten stalking laws after it was learned that Chiba prefectural police delayed accepting a report on a known stalker for more than a week and went on a three-day excursion to Hokkaido in December, 2011. The stalker killed two women shortly after.

Relatives of stalker victims have complained that victims in Japan are not offered the necessary protection from stalkers who ignore police restraining orders.

Japan Today

  • 0

    ChibaChick

    Yep. I was one of them. (victim, not stalker!) It was very scary at the time. The police were great with me though. It was just after the Chiba scandal so I think they were especially hot on the problem at the time.

  • 1

    Brainiac

    I don't understand why police and judges think that a stalker will obey a restraint order. Stalkers suffer from an extreme form of addiction. The urge to get their fix is greater than any warning. They go in and out of a fantasy world. They should be given one warning only and if they continue to stalk the victim afterwards, whether it be by email, phone or following, then they should be arrested. Unfortunately, though, even one warning can trigger them to commit murder.

  • 1

    Disillusioned

    Brainiac - You are right, but it is also a two way street. It is very easy for a woman to use the stalking laws as away of taking revenge on an ex-lover. The stalking needs to be investigated and proven before the police can take action. However, if the stalking is proved the penalties should be swift and severe.

  • 0

    EngrHassanASabi

    I guess stalking is a big thing in Japan. I hope when i get there, I won't be one of the unlucky 19 thousand+ who have stalkers.

  • 1

    papigiulio

    Did they ever punish the police that went on a trip btw?

  • 1

    Nessie

    I guess stalking is a big thing in Japan.

    Big in most places, including Japan.

  • 0

    rickyvee

    besides locking them up for a few days, what else can be done with stalkers? i don't think there is an adequate solution out there.

  • 1

    Yubaru

    19,920 stalking cases reported in 2011

    Which means that there are probably closer to 100,000 cases per year that actually occur, maybe more!

    The police have a bad habit with "accepting" reports from people. Meaning that not many times, too often that is, cases that are "reported" are never officially "reported" and leave no paper trail.

    Not including the people as well that dont trust the cops to do anything about their stalkers and suffer in silence. The NPA is just as much a part of the problem as the solution.

  • -1

    smithinjapan

    papigiulio: I had a stalker here once. Twice, actually, though one let up after a pretty short time. The first one kept at it for the longest time after only a couple of months of dating (and I decided she was a bit off), would call me at 4:00 a.m. to see if I would pick up, and if not send me 40 emails by morning to ask where I was. Then 20 more soon after in apology, etc. Believe it or not, her name was Saiko -- no joke! Fortunately we only hung out and stayed in the city and she didn't know where I lived, so once I changed my phone that was that (still looked over my shoulder when in the city). I wasn't about to call the police or anything, but for a little while I was at a loss as to how to deal with it.

    Anyway, I have a serious problem with how the police deal with stalking in Japan -- and needless to say the Hokkaido vacation was ludicrous! -- but I also know there is not much the police can do by law here until a law is committed. In other words, by definition it has to be too late for them to do anything that would be affective against a dangerous stalker. I'd love to see that changed so that if the threats and stalking persist the person is locked up, but I doubt the laws will change any time soon.

  • -2

    FPSRussia

    These laws do not apply to you!!! What do you mean? I got this crazy chick who keeps knocking at my door.

    Sorry but you have to report your address change within 2 weeks according to immigration law.

    But there's a clause that says if you fear domestic violence then you don't have to. I have no police report and they didn't take any action so guess what? She will find you.

    It's unfortunate but the law is always abused. Divorce lawyers encourage their clients to immediately contact the police if their ex does anything out of the ordinary. So if he's calling to speak to his kids is that stalking? YES,and no. We know its not REAL stalking. A father just wanting to speak to his children is not a stalker. Now if she's a vindictive women then yes he suddenly becomes a stalker.

    I won't deny there are nut jobs out there but this law will be be misused. It's all at someone's whim to post-it note someone as a stalker.

  • -2

    avigator

    I always suspected there are a lot of looneys out there.

  • -1

    GW

    My guess is its really over 200,000 cases, probably even higher

  • 0

    misstiatokyo

    Imagine - if this many are reported, how many are not?

  • -1

    warnerbro

    "19,920 stalking cases were reported nationwide in 2012...arrests were made in 1,504 cases"

    So a stalker's chance of being arrested is less than one in ten. The other 90% of stalkers are still at large.

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