US military police officer arrested on suspicion of driving under the influence

December 21, 2014 Ryukyu Shimpo

On December 21, the Okinawa Police Station arrested a military police officer stationed at the U.S. Kadena Air Base on suspicion of driving under the influence of alcohol (violation of traffic law in Japan). According to police, the suspect has admitted to the charge that he was driving a car under the influence of alcohol on a road in Miyagi, Chatan. About twice the legal limit of alcohol was detected in the suspect’s breath. The breath-alcohol concentration limit for driving is 0.15 mg/l in Japan. At 11:38 p.m. on December 20, police officers on patrol found the suspect driving a car dubiously in the residential area at Miyagi, Chatan, and ordered him to stop his car. They arrested him at the scene after detecting alcohol on in his breath. Riding in his car, there were also two acquaintances of the suspect. The U.S. military police officer confirmed that they drank at his home in Chatan. He was taking them to their homes in his car.

On December 9, U.S. forces in Japan eased its ‘liberty policy’, which is the off-base code of conduct for U.S. service members and its civilian personnel on Okinawa during off-duty hours. After that, two incidents by U.S. service members involving drinking have taken place. On December 18, a captain assigned to the U.S. Army Torii Station in Yomitan Village was arrested for obstructing officers from performing their duty. According to the police, the captain was drunk when he assaulted an Okinawn police officer who was questioning him.

(English translation by T&CT)

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