National

Halloween revelers overturn small truck near famed Shibuya ‘scramble crossing’ in Tokyo

Kyodo, JIJI

A small truck was overturned and five people were arrested for alleged groping or similar offenses over the weekend, police said, as scores of people clad in Halloween costumes gathered in Shibuya Ward, Tokyo — a hub for the celebrations.

The small truck was besieged by several people, with some riding on the rear deck in a shopping center near JR Shibuya Station at around 1 a.m. Sunday. While the driver left the vehicle to alert police, the group, including several young people, overturned the truck leading to damage, authorities said.

Video footage posted to Twitter showed two people standing on the overturned vehicle, dancing and shouting.

No one was injured in the incident, but the truck’s left door was damaged. The police are investigating the case on suspicion of property destruction.

Out of the five arrested — all men in their 20s to 50s — three were held for alleged violence, and two others were suspected of groping women or trying to take photos or videos up their skirts during the festivities in the area.

Police officers tasked with crowd control, including those dubbed “DJ police,” called on people to follow traffic signals and walk slowly as waves of Halloween revelers, including foreign nationals, flocked to the famous scramble crossing outside Shibuya Station.

The festive gatherings, usually held over the weekend ahead of Halloween, have taken root in Shibuya in recent years. Around 70,000 people visited the district on Halloween in 2015, with the numbers increasing every year since, according to the Shibuya Ward office.

The police are maintaining vigilance until Halloween day on Wednesday.