What started off as a basic robbery attempt turned into a mortifying experience for one wannabe robber in Fukuoka Prefecture. Seriously, either the konbini gods were conspiring against him or he met his ultimate match in an old woman, but either way, his attempt at crime was completely foiled thanks to an unusual series of events.

According to AOL New Japan and other reports, on July 29 at a little past 4pm, an approximately 170-cm-tall man (that’s 5’10” for those of you in the US) wearing a black knitted hat and white face mask walked into an undisclosed convenience store in Kawasaki, Fukuoka Prefecture. He went up to the register and held out his smartphone to the nearest staff member, on which was written, “I am a robber,” along with several other lines of small text.

While those circumstances may appear to be a blatant declaration of criminal intent to most people, the shop worker whom he came face-to-face with was none other than the branch’s manager, a 70-year-old woman whose eyesight was poor due to advanced age. She took a quick look at the smartphone’s screen but couldn’t make out the digital words, which led to an awkward standoff where she apparently didn’t even realize that her store was in the process of being robbed!

The epic glare-off continued until the ‘robber’ finally snapped and whipped out a knife, saying, “Give me your money!” out loud to drive his message home. TomoNews imagined the situation must have looked something like this:

▼The man’s temper flaring


Here’s the coolest part! Even after being verbally threatened, the woman still didn’t lose her cool, but calmly replied, “We don’t have any money here.” The fellow must have been so humiliated by his own botched attempt to strike terror into her heart that he gave up without a fight and left the store looking dejected.

▼Going home with his tail between his legs, if he had one.


You can watch the full brilliant reenactment clip made by our friends at TomoNews Japan below:

The question remains as to why the man conveyed his message through his smartphone in the first place. Perhaps he was a local and didn’t want his voice to give away his identity. Or maybe he thought he would appear more professional-looking by using a high-tech gadget. Regardless of his motivation, the incident has inspired some funny reactions online:

“Analog shopkeeper repels high-tech robber!”

“‘There’s no money here’ (´;ω;`) Bwahaha”

“If you’re going to rob the elderly, use a tablet, lol”

“It reminds me of that old lady character that Ken Shimura plays [a Japanese comedian]

“A robber with a communication problem, huh.”

We can laugh all we want at the ludicrous series of events in hindsight, but we really should be thankful that no one was hurt. Let’s just hope that all those wannabe robbers out there end up going home empty-handed like this guy!

Sources: AOL Online Japan, TV Asahi
Images: YouTube – TomoNews Japan