After recovering from injuries sustained while trying to run from police in September, a suspected panty thief was discharged from the hospital and subsequently arrested earlier this week.
According to police, on September 25th Masatoshi Maeda, a 58-year old company worker, stole 4 pairs of women’s panties that were hanging out to dry from the first floor residence of a woman in her 20’s in the Kami-Ikebukuro area of Tokyo. After being noticed and questioned about his actions by a passing man, Maeda fled the scene, jumping over a fence and ending up on the tracks of Tokyo’s JR Yamanote Line between Ikebukuro and Otsuka Station. Police eventually captured Maeda but not before he broke bones in his right leg and lower back.
This incident caused the JR Yamanote Line and other train lines to stop for approximately 30 minutes, impacting about 19,000 people.
Since his capture Maeda had been in the hospital recovering from his injuries. Upon his discharge from the hospital police arrested him, charging him with theft and breaking and entering. Maeda has admitted to the charges, saying “There is no doubt that I stole the underwear from the apartment.”
Following Maeda’s capture police searched his apartment and found 146 pairs of women’s underwear. It is not yet clear whether all these were also stolen by Maeda but police are investigating.
Although panty thief stories come up fairly frequently in Japan this is really an exceptional case. And I don’t mean that in a good way. It’s simply quite amazing that this guy’s desire for panties ended up inconveniencing almost 20,000 people. If only this guy had just bought his used panties like all the “decent” used panty lovers out there, none of this would have happened.