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Okinawa cops accuse another U.S. serviceman of drunk driving

Kadena Air Base
Kadena Air Base (NHK)

OKINAWA (TR) – In the latest incident involving a person affiliated with a U.S. base in Okinawa, prefectural police early Monday arrested a serviceman from Kadena Air Base on charges of drunk driving in Naha City, reports Jiji Press (July 4).

At approximately 4:05 a.m. on Sunday, police stopped and questioned Christopher Aaron Platte, a 27-year-old staff sergeant, who was driving on a road in the town of Chatan. During questioning, police noticed liquor on the suspect’s breath. The results of a breathalyzer test revealed an alcohol level in excess of the legal limit.

Platt denies the charges. “I didn’t drink at all,” the suspect is quoted by police.

Prior to pulling Platt over, police observed his vehicle weaving on the road.

Only the latest arrest

The arrest is only the latest arrest involving personnel affiliated with a base. On June 26, police arrested Francis Shayquan, 24, a shop clerk at Kadena Air Base, on suspicion of driving while intoxicated at an intersection in Okinawa City. Earlier that month, police arrested four civilians employed at the same base for the import, use and possession of illegal drugs.

U.S. forces imposed a drinking ban on its members and civilian personnel in Okinawa from May 27 to June 28 as part of a “unity and mourning” period in light of public uproar after Kenneth Franklin Shinzato, a U.S. military contractor and former marine, admitted to raping and murdering 20-year-old Rina Shimabukuro.

But on June 4 during the drinking ban, Aimee Mejia, 21, a U.S. Navy worker, was charged with drunk driving after she drove the wrong way along a highway and smashed head-on into two cars and injuring two individuals.