Police must confront ‘stalkers’

Regarding the Oct. 11 front-page article “Tougher stalking law failed to stir police“: The death of a child may not be the police’s fault, but there are serious issues with Japan’s police force. Not accepting the victim’s first report and suggesting that the victim take the matter to another police station was totally wrong.

Crime doesn’t choose the places and times to accommodate police officers when they are on duty. Policing should be a 24-hour job. The main job of a police officer is to serve and to protect.

“Stalking” is now as illegal as any crime. Japanese police need to take it more seriously. When a person reports a stalker, police need to send someone to both residences right away. The most important thing is to pick up and question the person being reported. Calling the stalker by cellphone is not the right approach. You need to approach him or her. Of course, the stalker will deny the accusation; that’s why police need to question him or her and use their best judgment on whether to hold him or her. You don’t just pick up someone for committing a crime then let him go.

Lawmakers need to know that laws are meant to be followed and that they need to be changed when they don’t work. Remember that the lawmakers are where they are because of the people — and not because of themselves.

What will lawmakers do now that the police didn’t follow the new law? Maybe a police officer needs to be arrested for not following the new law. In this case, the first officer seems to have forgotten that he is there to serve and to protect.

iamanamericantoo
from the japan times online

The opinions expressed in this letter to the editor are the writer’s own and do not necessarily reflect the policies of The Japan Times.