December 14, 2010

Japanese police officer ignores traffic accident to question cyclist

Found on Debito's site this morning, a video showing a cyclist in Japan who has been stopped for a bicycle registration check being questioned by a police officer.  This is not an uncommon occurrence for foreigners in Japan as bicycle registration checks serve as a convenient excuse to stop and question us dangerous foreign criminals.

But on this occasion we hear a traffic accident in the background, and rather than attend the accident the police officer continues to question the cyclist.  At the prompting of the cyclist the police officer eventually calls dispatch and notifies them of the accident then returns to questioning the cyclist rather than attending to the accident to assist any possibly injured people, or even direct traffic around the accident site.

During the confrontation with the officer (in which the cyclist does a good job of standing up for his rights) the cyclist indicates he is filming the incident and will put the video up on the web, to which the police officer essentially responds "go ahead and upload it".

So not to disappoint the officer, the cyclist uploaded the video to YouTube, and I'd like to do my bit to make sure it gets viewed by as wide an audience as possible.

This is Japan where it seems that questioning suspicious foreigners is more important to the police than attending the scene of an accident.  Sometimes foreigners in Japan are overly sensitive about incidents like this which is why I would like to ask:  What would a police officer in your country do in such a situation?

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