Military to add Naha to courtesy patrol list on Okinawa

By STARS AND STRIPES Published: November 21, 2012

CAMP LESTER, Okinawa — U.S. forces on Okinawa will begin late-night courtesy patrols in the prefectural capital of Naha to enforce a military curfew following a string of alleged crimes by servicemembers, according to announcements Wednesday by both the Marine Corps and Air Force.

The patrols will include plain-clothes servicemembers from all branches who will walk the streets of the city between 11 p.m. and 5:30 a.m., the services said. Similar teams already patrol areas around major bases on the island.

The military has struggled to rein in servicemembers despite an 11 p.m. to 5 a.m. curfew across the Japan following the alleged gang-rape of an Okinawan woman in a parking lot by two sailors. Since the incident, servicemembers have been accused of two separate cases of drunkenly trespassing into local homes.

The commander of U.S. Forces Japan has placed an 11 p.m. to 5 a.m. curfew on all U.S. troops in Japan, meaning an end to late-night visits to popular U.S. troop hangouts, such as Gate 2 Street outside Kadena Air Base, Okinawa. The curfew, which goes into effect immediately, came in the wake of this week's arrest of two U.S. sailors for the alleged assault and rape of a 20-year-old Japanese woman.


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