JR employee arrested for striking commuter over smartphone argument

SAITAMA —

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.

Japan Today

  • 2

    marcelito

    Wow...if everyone reacted as this JR employee, Japan would be a daily fightclub battleground.

  • -2

    Mirai Hayashi

    Call me a bad guy, but I kind of have respect for the JR employee.. I don't condone the action, but I agree with his frustration.

  • -1

    afanofjapan

    The number of times i have wanted to do this... congrats to the JR employee! Pity he got arrested for it

  • 1

    papigiulio

    He shouldnt have hit the guy, he shouldve thrown his keitai on the traintracks.

  • -1

    Frungy

    I don't agree with hitting the guy, particularly on the face, but walking and using your smartphone is really bad manners and endangers not only yourself but the people near you. The ketaiguy should have at least been fined or something.

  • 8

    CrazyJoe

    According to the news, it was the JR employee who was using the smartphone. The JR employee was warned not to use the smartphone by the 54 year old man and in a fit of rage the JR employee struct the 54 year old man.

    http://headlines.yahoo.co.jp/videonews/jnn?a=20131209-00000036-jnn-soci

    • Moderator

      Thanks for the correction. The story has been amended.

  • -2

    Mirai Hayashi

    This JR employee should be totally fired for using his smartphone on the job.

  • 1

    Pukey2

    I'm just curious as to why exactly the commuter asked the other guy to stop using his phone. This wasn't even on the train. I'm wondering whether he bumped into the commuter while walking and speaking on his phone (it doesn't say that specifically here).

  • 4

    Strangerland

    This JR employee should be totally fired for using his smartphone on the job.

    There is no indication from this article that he was working.

  • 0

    Disillusioned

    Another highly strung company employee on the edge of rationality. Be careful people! I've seen quite a few of these people 'snap' and it's not pretty.

  • 2

    timeon

    one important piece of information is lacking: was the JR employee working at that time, or he was just passing by? the article seems to imply that the guy was playing with his phone during work

  • -2

    afanofjapan

    I take back my earlier comment. What a douche...

    The news i saw is that he worked in Tokyo, and was heading home to Kuki station after the night time rush. So he wasnt working. But to be a mindless smartphone zombie, and then hit the person who called you out for it, is just plain weak.

    I have been tempted so many times to just flick their phone as they just about walked into me. Just telling them wont fix their ways; let their smashed screens be a constant reminder

  • 1

    Jeff Ogrisseg

    ...he got angry and struck the man across the face to get his attention.

    So, Mr. JR Worker struck the man who had just publically scolded him to "get his attention"? Huh?

    I always like to give "walkers" (like zombies in the TV show, get it?) a last-second finger-snap to jar their senses. But perhaps I should reconsider this.

  • 0

    taj

    There's always that one cranky old whack job. The off-duty JR worker could've been just standing there, and had a nutter go off on him.

    Still, no excuse to slap him across the face.

  • 1

    Offwithyourarrogance

    people should just mind their own business. I am fed up with ordinary citizen walking around telling what others can and can't do! You virtually can't take a leak without being watched or scrutinized, I am sure the ruddiness of the old guy had something to do with the sack he got! haha

  • -1

    Knox Harrington

    So basically two grumpy old oyaji full of pent up agression and a lot of repressed feelings? What else is new? Old people really like to scold in Japan, don't they?

    Nothing to see here. Move along...

  • 0

    the_odeman

    Champion

  • 2

    Manoa-boyz

    One question Offwithyourarrogance: should we just mind our own business when some unthinking, thick-skinned, and self-centered dweeb walks around with a cigarette dangling from his or her fat mouth polluting our God-given right to breathe clean air? And for being unable to take a "leak" without being "scrutinized or watched", I hope you're not talking about doing it in public or I'll be the first to mind your business. By the way, it's rudeness not "ruddiness". Learning how to spell before making commentary may help others to take you more seriously.

  • 1

    justbcuzisay

    people should just mind their own business. I am fed up with ordinary citizen walking around telling what others can and can't do! You virtually can't take a leak without being watched or scrutinized, I am sure the ruddiness of the old guy had something to do with the sack he got! haha

    I remember reading recently JR has been making announcements and signs asking people to not walk and use their smartphone in stations, because there have been several accidents. So 1. there was a darn good reason the man has been aware of the dangers and butted in and 2. As a company employee, he should be respecting the rules of his company, especially while still on company 'premises' (I am not sure if he was in uniform, but still I am sure the JR employee has been told many times that they have a problem with accidents at stations

  • 0

    Scnadal.Lova

    dont forget "Smart phone bicycle riders".

  • 1

    ka_chan

    It doesn't matter if the JR employee was on duty or off, he was on JR property. If was in uniform than he should be fired. Since he assaulted the guy, he should be arrested. It is also another reason for firing especially on the platform. They should throw the book at him. As for JR, maybe they should setup a system where phones, smart or otherwise will not work on the platform.

  • 0

    WA4TKG

    If is WASN'T a "Smartphone", then it's OK to use ? ( nobody bother answering that thanks).

  • 0

    602miko

    at work no one's allowed to used a smartphone for emergency maybe ???

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