Multiple Dresses Ruined in Shocking Coming of Age Day Attack

A rare criminal incident has marred Coming of Age Day for at least seven victims whose expensive clothes were ruined by an unknown assailant.

Unseen Japan
2 min readJan 9


By Unseen Japan

Man and woman in Coming of Age attire

It’s unusual for Coming of Age Day in Japan to bring news of crime. Unfortunately, that’s what happened in Kitakyushu in an attack on multiple attendees.

The incident occurred in Kitakyushu, a city on the island of Kyushu in Fukuoka Prefecture. It’s typical for participants in Coming of Age Day — a ceremony traditionally held when a young person turns 20 — to dress up. However, Kitakyushu has developed a particular reputation in Japan for its participants decking out in flashy fashion.

That reputation drew unwanted attention this year. A young woman reports that, on her way home from the ceremony, she purchased a monorail ticket. That’s when she noticed a black stain on her sleeve.

Upon further inspection, she noticed that several parts of her dress, including her belt, her socks, and her shoes, were stained with an “ink-like” black liquid.

The woman filed a report with police. Soon after, additional reports of stained clothes flowed in. Broadcast morning news programs in Japan report that the total number of victims has risen to seven.

Stained Coming of Age Day dress
Picture: ANN via YouTube

Besides being an insulting violation, the assault may also prove costly for the victims. The initial victim says she put in her rental order for her dress the year before last and paid JPY 300,000 (around USD $2,275) for the privilege. She says she has no idea how much it’ll cost her to have the damage repaired.

The victim told Asahi News Network that she felt like she couldn’t go see her grandmother to show her the dress. She also couldn’t take pictures of her in the dress, which typically happens after the ceremony.

“I want to know what the perpetrator was thinking,” she said. I’m pissed.”

Police are still looking for the assailant.

Coming of Age Day originally reflected that young people became legal adults in Japan at the age of 20. However, with the legal age falling to 18 this year, many municipalities have turned the event into a “Turning 20 ceremony” — an interesting case of tradition adopting to the law.

What to read next

Coming of Age Day and Age Milestones in Japan


振り袖に“墨汁”式典で被害「祖母に見せられない」被害者語る無念. Asahi News Network