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Tokyo cops arrest man for reckless driving at Shibuya ‘scramble’ crossing

Shibuya 'scramble' crossing
A 52-year-old employee of a construction firm crossed into the crowded Shibuya ‘scramble’ crossing while driving a van last month (TV Asahi)

TOKYO (TR) – Tokyo Metropolitan Police have arrested a 52-year-old man for recklessly driving through the famous “scramble” crossing in front of JR Shibuya Station last week, reports the Sankei Shimbun (Oct. 3).

At around 10:00 p.m. on September 25, Toshio Miyoshi, an employee at a construction firm in Sendai City, Miyagi Prefecutre, allegedly drove a black van into the busy intersection while it was full of pedestrians as he was being pursued by a patrol car.

As the van quickly passed through, pedestrians rushed back to the sidewalks. In security camera footage, one male pedestrian in a gray suit can be seen attempting to kick the side of the van as it barreled through the throngs of people.

After the incident, Miyoshi fled in the van. There were no injuries.

On Tuesday, Miyoshi turned himself over to the Shibuya Police Station. “I thought that if I got interrogated about driving with a suspended license I would lose my job,” the suspect told police.

Prior to the incident, Miyoshi passed through the same intersection by running a red traffic light when there were nearly few pedestrians in the path of his van as the patrol car followed.

Suspended sentence for possession of stimulant drugs

According to Fuji News Network (Oct. 5), Miyoshi is currently serving a suspended prison term for the possession of kakuseizai, or stimulant drugs. On Thursday, police searched the office and residence of the suspect in Sendai for evidence in the case.

Known around the world, the scramble crossing in Shibuya has been used as the backdrop for a number of television commercials and films, including “Lost in Translation.”