Age ain’t nothing but a number, but it’s got to be the correct one.

Wouldn’t it be nice to be 17 forever? I mean, not for me at least because that was the age I got banned from my D&D party for being a virulent mind flayer apologist.

My political beliefs aside, it would still be nice to have all the health and protections that come with being a minor. But once you turn “the big 1-8” there’s no turning back, and here to remind us of that is the Aichi Prefectural Police.

On 3 October, they arrested 28-year-old Takuya Fujiwara for impersonating a 17-year-old in order to get support from child protective services. According to police, he used a false name in order to be put under the care of the Westside Child Guidance Center in Nagoya City from June to August. There he was given a free place to stay and three square meals a day.

However, a staff member at the facility found an item left behind by Fujiwara that seemed to throw his age into question.

▼ Reports don’t say what the staff member found, but I think he probably left his HitClips lying around.

The staff member then contacted police who launched an investigation which found Fujiwara to be the ripe old age of 28. However, the suspect is denying the charges against him with this doozy of an alibi: “I’m 17 years old, so I don’t remember anything.”

It’s an interesting stonewalling tactic but one that seems like it would really get under the cops’ skin. They’ll surely keep up the pressure in future interrogations, but in the meantime, readers of the news were more impressed that a 28-year-old could convince anyone that he was over 10 years younger.

“Talk about a baby face…”
“He’s a 28-year-old that looks 17?!”
“I could see a 38-year-old pretending to be 27, but there’s no way 28 can pass for 17.”
“They didn’t even bother to check his ID?”
“He’s 17 at heart!”
“It’s a crime but it also exposes a big weakness in that system.”
“He’s eternally 17.”

Looks aside, the Westside Child Guidance Center told media, “If the protection system is misused, it will also affect the children who really need it.” While the comments saw the system as “weak” it’s rather comforting to know that they are willing to help someone out who didn’t even have the proper identification and in all likelihood looked suspiciously older. Unfortunately, with each person who exploits this generosity the center becomes less willing to offer it, which will ultimately hurt actual children in need.

As such, Fujiwara is facing a charge of interfering with the facility’s normal operations and possibly other charges since the investigation is still ongoing. Personally, I can’t help but wonder if the suspect had a run-in with a mind flayer based on his testimony. Of course, I’m not blaming the mind flayer in this instance, they have a right to exist just like anyone else.

Source: NHK News Web, Kyodo, My Game News Flash
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