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Luckily no one was harmed in the tense encounter.

On 18 May, the Tokyo Metropolitan Police Department announced the arrest of a 17-year-old high school student in Yokohama City for violating the Stalker Control Law and Act on Punishment of Physical Violence. The victim of these crimes was Taiko Sasaki, member of the up-and-coming Johnnys’ Jr. group 7 MEN Samurai.

▼ 7 MEN Samurai, with Taiko Sasaki second from left

According to police, the student was reported to have followed Sasaki around on at least four occasions between 1 April, 2021 and 8 May, 2022. She would suddenly appear either calling out to the musician or grabbing him out of the blue, and fearing for his safety he consulted with his agency, who contacted police last November. The authorities issued warnings to the girl and spoke with her parents on four occasions, but it didn’t appear to deter her actions.

On 30 April she once again approached Sasaki and followed him for about 200 meters (650 feet), only this time holding a box cutter. Sasaki was wearing headphones at the time and couldn’t make out what she said, but according to Asahi Shimbun her words while brandishing the blade were, “You don’t need to worry about stalking, because I won’t go on anymore,” while Nikkan Sports reported her as saying, “I bought this box cutter to die. I came to you to because I wanted to apologize before dying.”

According to the police, Sasaki managed to stay calm and quickly went to his management’s offices for fear that she might harm someone in the crowded street. Fortunately, she was apprehended before any harm came to herself or others.

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