Five schoolgirls, aged eleven and twelve, were assaulted by a drunk whilst riding a train home, and passengers in the carriage did nothing to help.
The girls, who were returning home after a trip to a nearby town, had an encounter with a man which ended with him apparently slapping three of them in the face, and hitting them with his bag.
It seems he did them no significant harm, for we hear that they were uninjured.
They issued a plaintive report of their experience: “There were one or two adults on the carriage, but they didn’t do anything to help us.”
They left the train as soon as possible, and their parents reported the incident to police.
On receiving the report, police soon investigated and tracked the assailant down. He was arrested, and turned out to be a 53-year-old unemployed man. He admitted his crimes, saying “I woz drunk an’ I ‘it ‘em”, or something to that effect.
Police are still looking into the particulars.
It is not clear whether the girls were engaged in any action which might be provocative.
Via the NHK.
The story has unleashed a storm of comments on 2ch, with a probable majority sympathising strongly with those passengers who did nothing.
They generally point out their impotence in the face of a possibly knife wielding opponent, the extreme risk of a one to one fight on a train with an unknown opponent, and the probability of being arrested for getting involved, though many are unhappy at the oppressive weight of this logic in the face of their desire to intervene.
Some also suspect the girls of having done something to arouse the man’s wrath, though this is pure conjecture.
2ch is hardly a representative sample, so let us pose the question ourselves in an equally unrepresentative venue:
You are riding home from some unspecified business. The carriage is nearly empty when a rough looking man reeking of alcohol takes offence at some real or imagined slight made by a gaggle of cheeky schoolgirls. He starts slapping the girls, and they look plaintively at the few other passengers, who are all pretending to be asleep.