When we're faced with an adult causing trouble or making a scene in public, finding the right words to warn them or persuade them to stop can be a challenging task. We often hesitate to say something out of fear of retaliation. However, if the problem is being caused by a young child, surely it's safe to say something... Or is it?

In a tweet that seems to have struck a nerve with SNS users in Japan, veteran cosplayer Chiba Josui (@Josuicp) recounted what happened to his friend recently, when he saw a group of elementary school children in front of the entrance of his apartment as he was coming home one day.

Apparently, a group of them were standing next to their bikes and engrossed in conversation, completely oblivious to the fact that they were blocking the entrance to an apartment building. Unfortunately for Chiba Josui's friend, that apartment happened to be where he lived and he wanted to get inside. He had no choice but to warn the kids that they were causing a nuisance. They dispersed, and he thought nothing of the incident after that.

However, a month later, he was surprised when the police suddenly showed up at his doorstep. Astonishingly, he was suspected of assaulting a minor.

---"A friend of mine warned some elementary school kids who were loitering in front of his apartment building. A month later, the police suddenly showed up and asked him to come to the police station since he was suspected of assaulting a minor. After three hours of interrogation, his innocence was proved. Apparently, the police told him: Even if kids are causing a nuisance or blocking the road, you should not warn them yourself and instead inform the police by calling 110 [the emergency number for the police in Japan]. Scary..."

The officer was upset with his friend for trying to take matters into his own hands:

---"Rather than risk messing things up by warning people yourself, this kind of problem can be avoided if you just call 110, so please do so in the future," the officer advised repeatedly.

In reaction to Chiba Josui's original tweet, which has over 36,000 likes and over 47,000 retweets at the time of writing, comments ranged from general concern about the relationship between citizens and the police, to concern about dealing with children's lies and concern for the police officers:

* "Has it come to the point where we need to ask an official third party to intervene for anything and everything we do?"
* "I can understand that parents want to believe what their children tell them, but children can also tell lies."
* "It looks like we need video or photographic evidence."
* "This will only be an extra burden for the authorities."
* "Apart from the officer who handled your friend, there might be others who don't welcome the extra work."

Notably absent from the comments were any concerns about possible risks to citizens due to additional police involvement in their lives...

By - grape Japan editorial staff.