|Hide your pudding. Hide your ice cream.
Image source: ANN News
On Monday (Mar. 21), police in Tokyo arrested a 51-year-old man suspected of being a serial burglar known for his love of sugary treats, such as ice cream and pudding.
According to Tokyo Metropolitan Police, in August of last year, the suspect, an unemployed resident of Wajima City, Ishikawa Prefecture named Yasuhiro Wakashima, broke into a tax accountant’s office in Musashino
City, Tokyo and stole various items, including sandals and ice cream.
Police say that Wakashima ate the ice cream while still at the Musashino office. In addition to this incident, police also believe that Wakashima is the man behind a long series of similar burglaries dating all the way back to August of 2013.
Security camera footage and other evidence has has led police to believe that
the suspect is responsible for at least 40 burglaries of offices in Tokyo and Ishikawa Prefecture, in which approximately 5,500,000 JPY (US$49,423) in cash was stolen.
Wakashima’s trademark appears to have been stealing sweets from the offices he broke into and eating them before making his escape. Police believe that he did this in 15 of the burglaries he is suspected of.
According to police, Wakashima would rummage through office refrigerators and other places, in search of ice cream, pudding, candy, chocolate, soft drinks and other sweets. And when he found these sweets, he would consume them right on the spot. In total, police say that he consumed about 250 stolen sweets. In one case, Wakashima is said to have drank four bottles of carbonated soft drinks before fleeing the scene of the crime.
During the course of the investigation of these peculiar burglaries, some police officers began referring to the then unidentified culprit as “Sugar” due to his love of sweets.
Police used blood found at the scene of the Musashino burglary to identify Wakashiama via DNA testing. They arrested him on March 21st under suspicion of theft.
Wakashima has admitted to the Musashino burglary, however, he has yet to admit to eating the ice cream. Police quoted him as saying “I don’t remember whether I ate the ice cream but there’s no doubt I did what you’re charging me with.”
In an ANN News report on this story, Kenji Kiyonaga, a veteran reporter who has extensive experience covering burglaries, commented that stealing sweets was common behavior for burglars in the Showa period. He added that Wakashima, in addition to trying to obtain cash, was likely trying to “test himself.”
If you’d like to see a CG recreation of this story, check out the TomoNews Japan video below.