JR employee arrested for striking commuter over smartphone argument
Police in Kuki, Saitama Prefecture, said Tuesday they have arrested a 59-year-old JR employee for striking a commuter after the commuter told him to stop using his smartphone while walking on the platform at Kuki Station.
According to police, the incident occurred at around 10 a.m. on Monday. Fuji TV reported that the suspect, JR employee Hiroyuki Hayashi, was told off by a 54-year-old man for using his smartphone. Hayashi was quoted by police as saying he got angry and struck the man across the face to get his attention.
The issue of “smartphone walkers,” as the Japanese media call them, has been getting a lot of coverage recently.
Pedestrians glued to their phone screens are often oblivious of their surroundings causing them to frequently bump into other people, or even to drop their phones from train station platforms.