TOKYO (TR) – A 22-year-old man who fell to his death from a restaurant window in Shibuya Ward last month had marijuana in his system, police have revealed.
Police believe that the hallucinogenic properties of the drug caused the death of the man, reports the Yomiuri Shimbun (June 11).
At around 5:00 a.m. on May 21, the man plunged about 12 meters to the ground from a window of an Italian restaurant on the fourth floor of a restaurant in the Udagawacho area.
The man, who suffered severe head injuries, was later confirmed dead at a hospital, police said.
At the time of the incident, the restaurant was closed but hosting a group of six persons, aged in their teens to 20s.
“From the night before, we were drinking and smoking marijuana,” one of the five other participants told police.
“He got up and started running”
Prior to the arrival of police, the remaining five persons are believed to have disposed of the marijuana they had on hand.
However, the results of analyses of the urine of the six persons gave positive results for four of them, including the man who died, police said.
“He went to sleep on a sofa after looking a bit strange, but suddenly he got up and started running,” one of the five other persons told police of the man who died. “He then opened the window himself and fell.”
Based on evidence at the scene, there were no signs of a struggle or reason to believe that he committed suicide, police said.
Police attempted to learn how the group obtained the marijuana. But since the Marijuana Control Law does not regulate use, the four who tested positive were not arrested.
According to the Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare, harmful components in marijuana can affect the brain and cause hallucinations and memory loss. However, there are widespread misconceptions among young people that marijuana is harmless.
According to the National Police Agency, about 70 percent of the 5,034 people who were arrested last year for possession of marijuana were in their 20s or younger. Earlier this year, the ministry advanced police for criminalizing the use of marijuana.