Activists call on US Marine who stole, crashed car in Japan

Activists call on US Marine who stole, crashed car in Japan

IWAKUNI, Yamaguchi Activists have collected signatures calling for a U.S. military serviceman stationed in this western Japan city who allegedly stole and crashed a car to face legal consequences.

Members of the Shimin Rengo Iwakuni citizens group took to the streets near a supermarket in the city's Mikasamachi district on January 20 to call for the U.S. Marine to compensate the victim and face punishment under Japanese law. The 38-year-old victim of the theft also participated, along with the group's co-leader Hiroshi Okamura, who said that the U.S. serviceman was not arrested and settlement negotiations have not proceeded. He said he will be happy if his signature can help prevent others from facing the same ordeal.

According to Iwakuni's municipal government and other sources, an officer stationed at U.S. Marine Corps AirMarine Corps Air Station Iwakuni allegedly trespassed into a city car dealership on the morning of December 3, 2022, where he took a car key and took off in a stolen vehicle. The car crashed at an intersection soon before reaching the base. The Marine is thought to have left the vehicle behind and returned to the base. The Iwakuni Police Station is investigating the incident on a voluntary basis, on suspicion of larceny and other charges.

Okamura stated that they want to collect 20,000 signatures and they want to reach the point where the victim can receive compensation and the U.S. officer will be properly subjected to punishment under Japanese law.