Woman, partner arrested over death of her 3-year-old daughter

Posted on April 6, 2016. Filed under: Abuse Neglect Death | Tags: , |

SAITAMA — January 13th, 2016

Police in Sayama, Saitama Prefecture, have arrested a couple on suspicion of abandoning responsibility for Fujimoto’s 3-year-old daughter, whose body was found with burn marks on her face. Police believe the girl’s death may have been the result of recurring domestic abuse.

The suspects, Ayaka Fujimoto, 22, and her common-law husband Yuki Okawara, 24, are accused of abandoning responsibility for Fujimoto’s second oldest daughter Hazuki after she had suffered severe burn injuries, which led to her death, Fuji TV reported. Fujimoto also has a 4-year-old daughter.

According to police, on Jan 9, Okawara called police reporting that the girl’s body was cold when he woke up. When officers arrived at the scene, Hazuki was lying face up in her futon. She was confirmed dead at the scene.

According to police, the couple has admitted that they never took Hazuki to a hospital despite being aware that the child had suffered burn injuries. Fujimoto also admitted to scalding Hazuki’s face with boiling water.

Besides burn injuries on her face, Hazuki’s body also bore traces of other scars and injuries, leading police to believe that the child may have been abused on a regular basis, officials said.

Neighbors were quoted by police as saying that at the end of last year they could hear loud children’s cries coming from the suspects’ house, often for up to an hour, and that they had not seen the children since.

Police also revealed that they had been summoned by neighbors on two occasions last June and July after residents had witnessed the children locked outside the house. At the time, however, police found no signs of abuse on either child and no reports were made to the local child consultation centers.

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Woman arrested for stabbing 15-month-old grandson to death

Posted on April 26, 2015. Filed under: Abuse Neglect Death | Tags: , , |

SAITAMA —March 21st, 2015

Police in Saitama said Saturday they have arrested a 65-year-old woman on suspicion of fatally stabbing her 15-month-old grandson.

According to police, Mie Tanaka stabbed her grandson Eisuke Kimura at her apartment sometime between 2 and 4 p.m. Friday, Sankei Shimbun reported. At the time of the attack, Eisuke’s mother was out, leaving the boy alone with his grandmother.

The boy’s mother returned home at around 4 p.m. and found her son unconscious and bleeding from a stomach wound. She called 110. Eisuke was rushed to hospital where he was pronounced dead.

Police quoted Tanaka as saying she stabbed her grandson but said she has so far given no motive.

Tanaka and her husband lived with their daughter and their grandson.

Japan Today

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Mother jumps from roof while holding 17-day-old baby

Posted on April 26, 2015. Filed under: Abuse Neglect Death | Tags: , , , |

SAITAMA — April 9th, 2015

A woman jumped from the roof of a building, while holding her 17-day-old baby daughter in her arms, in Saitama City, police said.

The woman, who is in her 30s, survived the fall but the baby died, Fuji TV reported Thursday.

Police said a call came into 110 at around 9:20 a.m., reporting that a woman and a baby were on the ground in front of an apartment building in Urawa Ward. The mother, though in critical condition was still alive at the scene, but the baby girl had fractures in her cranium, and was later confirmed dead at hospital.

Paramedics who spoke with the mother in the ambulance on the way to the hospital, said she admitted that her jump from the top of the building had been on purpose.

Police said the woman’s husband had gone to work when the incident occurred.

Japan Today

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18-month-old girl dies after being left alone in hot room for 18 hours

Posted on September 15, 2013. Filed under: Abuse Neglect Death | Tags: , , , |

SEP. 15, 2013 – SAITAMA

Police in Saitama have arrested a woman who left her 18-month-old daughter alone at home in a non-air-conditioned room last month, causing the child to die of heatstroke.

According to police, 22-year-old Kaori Ishizuka left her infant daughter Riona in their apartrment alone from 12 noon on Aug 10 for 18 hours while she went to work, TV Asahi reported. She did not turn the air conditioning on when she left. The temperature outside that day reached 37.7 degrees in Saitama, according tot he Japan Meteorological Agency.

Police said Ishizuka has been charged with manslaughter. During questioning, Ishizuka was quoted by police as saying, “I had left her home alone before, so I thought she would be okay this time too.”

Police said Ishizuka was investigated by a child consultation center once before in July when she was suspected of having left her daughter unsupervised. Ishizuka has denied the charge, but when social workers followed up with visits to her home on two separate occasions, nobody answered the door.

Japan Today

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Mother says death of 2 children was failed murder-suicide bid

Posted on August 1, 2013. Filed under: Abuse Neglect Death | Tags: , , , |

CRIME JUL. 30, 2013 – SAITAMA —

Police in Kuki, Saitama Prefecture, said Monday that a woman arrested on suspicion of murdering her two children has confessed that it was part of a failed murder-suicide bid.

According to police, 44-year-old Harumi Ishikawa contacted emergency services at around 1 a.m. on Sunday to report that she had slashed her wrists. Fuji TV reported that police found that she had apparently stabbed her 14-year-old daughter and 10-year-old son to death with a kitchen knife prior to making the call.

During police questioning, Ishikawa was quoted as saying that she had planned to kill her children before taking her own life. Doctors have described her injuries as minor.

Japan Today

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39-year-old man arrested for beating 1-month-old son to death

Posted on May 23, 2013. Filed under: Abuse Neglect Death | Tags: , , , |

 MAY. 22, 2013 – AITAMA —

Police said Wednesday they have arrested a 39-year-old man over the death of his 1-month-old baby son in Konosu, Saitama Prefecture.

According to police, the man, who has been named as Yuji Obaku, was investigated after his son Ryuto was taken to hospital and diagnosed with brain damage in early March, NTV reported. Staff at the hospital advised police that the boy’s injuries may have been caused by violence.

Following a police investigation, Obaku was accused of seizing the infant by the head and slamming him into a futon mattress. Police say Obaku also shook the boy repeatedly.

Obaku and his 27-year-old wife already had two children before Ryuto, police said. It is currently unknown whether Obaku’s other children also suffered from assault or mistreatment.

During police questioning, Obaku was quoted by police as saying: “I got angry because he wouldn’t stop crying.”

Japan Today

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Woman held for throwing 2-yr-old daughter from 4th-floor balcony

Posted on May 15, 2013. Filed under: Abuse Neglect Death | Tags: , , , |

SAITAMA —Crime May. 05, 2013

Police on Saturday arrested a 31-year-old woman for allegedly throwing her two-year-old daughter from the 4th-floor balcony of their apartment in Ageoshi, Saitama Prefecture.

According to police, an eyewitness called authorities at 9:30 a.m. Saturday to report that a woman had thrown a child from the balcony. Police rushed to the scene and found the child lying on the ground.

Fuji TV reported that she remains in a coma in hospital. The girl fell a distance of about 10 meters, police were quoted as saying.

The mother, who is Chinese, was quoted by police as saying she was sorry for doing such a terrible thing, but gave no motive.

Her husband, who is Chinese, was out at the time. The couple also has a 1-year-old son who was home at the time of the incident.

Japan Today

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Woman tries to kill son while husband, 3 kids sleep in same room

Posted on March 26, 2013. Filed under: Abuse Neglect Death | Tags: , , |

Japan Today Mar. 25, 2013     SAITAMA —

Police said Monday they have arrested a woman after her husband allegedly caught her trying to strangle to death one of her children in the night at their home in Kumagaya, Saitama Prefecture.

According to police, 29-year-old Miho Shinohara was asleep with her husband and four children when the incident took place at around 9:30 p.m. on Saturday, Fuji TV reported. Shinohara’s husband awoke to find her strangling their eldest son, a 4-year-old boy, with an electrical cable, police said.

The couple’s son was taken to hospital where doctors say his condition is not serious. Shinohara has reportedly confessed to attempted murder, although police say her motive is still under investigation.

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Woman throws newborn baby out of toilet window

Posted on January 24, 2013. Filed under: Abuse Neglect Death | Tags: , , , |

 JAN. 24, 2013 SAITAMA —Japan Today

Police said Wednesday they have arrested a woman for allegedly killing her newborn baby son by throwing him out of a toilet window in an apartment in Honjo, Saitama Prefecture.

According to police, Madoka Masuda, 26, Masuda was staying at her 30-year-old boyfriend’s apartment when she gave birth to the child in the toilet on the evening of Jan 19, TBS reported. Immediately following the birth, police say she threw the child out of the window and left it outside to die.

Masuda’s boyfriend was quoted by police as saying that he noticed something was amiss due to an unusual odor in the bathroom and looked out of the window. He saw the baby’s body outside and notified the authorities.

Masuda was arrested at the scene on a murder charge.

Japan Today

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17-year-old youth held for abusing 2-week-old son

Posted on December 30, 2012. Filed under: Abuse Neglect Death | Tags: , , , |

 DEC. 29, 2012 –  SAITAMA —

Police in Toda, Saitama Prefecture, on Saturday arrested a 17-year-old youth on suspicion of abusing his 2-week-old son after the infant suffered a broken right arm.

According to police, the suspect, who is unemployed, threw the child onto a futon, breaking his right arm at his apartment on Dec 26, TBS reported. The suspect and his wife, who is also 17, took the baby to a hospital on Friday and the hospital notified police about a possible case of child abuse.

The suspect was quoted by police as saying he got angry after the child wouldn’t stop crying. His wife, who was at home at the time of the assault, is also being questioned by police.

Japan Today

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Woman arrested for stabbing her child to death in Saitama

Posted on December 30, 2012. Filed under: Abuse Neglect Death | Tags: , , , |

CRIME DEC. 30, 2012 – SAITAMA —

One child died and another was seriously injured after their mother stabbed them with a kitchen knife at their Saitama home earlier this month, police said Saturday.

According to police, 34-year-old nursing home employee Atsuko Kurihara was arrested for murder and attempted murder after stabbing her sons at her home in the early hours of Dec 19, Fuji TV reported. Her 5-month-old son was killed in the attack, while her 2-year-old son sustained serious injuries.

Kurihara then attempted to commit suicide by stabbing herself in the abdomen, police said. Fuji reported that she was taken to hospital following the incident and discharged on Friday, at which point she was arrested.

During police questioning, Kurihara was quoted as saying that she didn’t want to live but has so far given no motive for her actions.

Japan Today

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Newborn girl found in bag near highway in Saitama

Posted on December 25, 2012. Filed under: Abuse Neglect Death | Tags: , , , |


Police said Tuesday that a newborn girl was found in a tote bag near a highway in Misato, Saitama Prefecture, on Monday. The infant is being treated in hospital.

According to police, a woman walking her dog spotted the vinyl bag among shrubbery by Route 298 at about 4:40 p.m., and notified police. TV Asahi reported that the infant was wrapped in a towel and still had her umbilical cord attached.

Police said they are looking for the person or persons responsible on a charge of abandoning the baby.

Japan Today

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Bullied teen remains in coma / Boy unconscious since alleged assault by 3 classmates in January

Posted on September 15, 2012. Filed under: Bullying | Tags: , , , |

The Yomiuri Shimbun

SAITAMA–A 15-year-old boy who attended a middle school in Kawagoe, Saitama Prefecture, has been in a coma since January after he was punched and kicked by three of his classmates, according to investigative sources.

The then second-year student had reportedly been a target of chronic bullying by the trio since enrolling in the middle school in 2010. The municipal school had acknowledged frequent troubles between the boy and the trio, but failed to recognize them as bullying before the incident, according to the sources.

The incident occurred on Jan. 5 during a winter recess. After finishing morning activities related to a sports club that the boy and the trio belonged to, the three told the boy to come with them to a city park where they allegedly punched and kicked him repeatedly. Noticing that the boy had stopped moving, one of the three called for an ambulance.

Prefectural authorities arrested the three later that day on suspicion of injurious assault. They were later sent to a juvenile reformatory.

The trio reportedly told the police they punched the boy because they “disliked the boy’s attitude,” claiming the beating was the result of a “one-on-one fight” rather than bullying by the group. Further investigation, however, led to the suspicion that the three likely assaulted the boy in turn while surrounding him.

The school did not acknowledge the boy had been bullied until it conducted a questionnaire-based survey among its students in January after the incident. Up to that point, the school had recognized altercations between the boy and the trio on eight occasions from April 2011 to December 2011, including a fight that broke out in class after the boy was teased by the trio. At that time, the teacher reprimanded both the boy and the trio, possibly unaware the boy had been bullied.

The survey, conducted among about 130 second-year students in mid-January at the request of the boy’s family, revealed alleged chronic bullying by the trio. Respondents reported they saw the boy frequently beaten by the trio and others immediately after they enrolled in the school in 2010. There were also reports of the boy being verbally abused with phrases such as “kimoi” (creepy) and “Don’t come near me.”

The boy also was forced to wade into a pond to retrieve a ball the trio threw into the water, The Yomiuri Shimbun learned Thursday.

According to the municipal board of education, the incident occurred in the second term from September 2011 to December 2011. The trio threw a ball into a pond near the school, then ordered the boy to retrieve it. As the boy waded into knee-deep water, the three taunted him and took pictures with a cellular phone. They later showed the images to their friends for amusement.

The board of education also found the trio forced the boy to play a game involving money dubbed “the home run game,” in which the boy pitched a ball for the trio to hit. According to the rules established by the trio, the boy had to pay 500 yen every time they successfully hit the ball. The education board said it could not confirm whether the boy actually paid money.

The board of education now believes malicious bullying of the boy, including the above instances, occurred repeatedly.

Just after the January incident in which the boy fell into a coma, the board of education said there had been no bullying. It claimed to be unaware of the bullying until it conducted the survey later that month.

“Because we did not realize it was bullying at the time, we addressed the series of incidents on a case-by-case basis, as if it were an issue such as a quarrel. We apologize for our lack of awareness,” an official from the municipal board of education said.


Mother demands probe

The boy’s mother demanded the municipal board of education and the school conduct a thorough investigation, saying she “wanted to ask my son, but he can’t speak now.”

“Why couldn’t the school prevent the incident from occurring when it was aware of the troubles [between my son and his classmates]?” she said.

The boy has been hospitalized in a coma for eight months since the January incident. He has suffered cardiac arrest twice–just after the incident and again this spring. He was weaned from ventilatory support, but is still being fed through a tube. His mother goes to the hospital every day after work to take care of her son.

The mother recalled the boy had complained of a stomachache around last April and often missed school. Now she wonders if that might have had to do with bullying. But the boy started going to school again the following month because he “loved the club” he belonged to, according to the mother.

(Sep. 14, 2012)

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Baby’s body found in Saitama river

Posted on August 20, 2012. Filed under: Abuse Neglect Death | Tags: , , |

AUG. 20, 2012 – SAITAMA —

Police said Sunday that the body of a baby girl was found in a river in Kawaguchi, Saitama Prefecture.

According to police, a man fishing in the river noticed the body at about 10:30 a.m. Saturday and notified police, TV Asahi reported. The man told police that at first, he thought it was a doll floating.

Police said the baby was naked and appeared to be several months old. She had been dead for a couple of days, police said, according to TV Asahi. There were no external signs of injury on the body, they added.

Japan Today

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Soka boy bullied into taking leap off school

Posted on July 20, 2012. Filed under: Abuse Neglect Death | Tags: , , , |

Friday, July 20, 2012 Japan Times

SAITAMA — A 13-year-old boy broke bones in his waist and chest in April after being bullied into jumping off a public junior high school building in Soka, Saitama Prefecture, it was learned Friday.

The board of education believes the boy had been bullied routinely before jumping off the eaves of the second floor in a “test of courage” on April 18.

As a result of the 3-meter drop to the concrete below, the boy sustained broken bones, including in his chest. He has missed nearly all of his classes since school began in April and is still under rehabilitation.

The board did not release the name of the school nor any other details into the incident.

At the request of the boy’s parents, Saitama police are interviewing his teachers and classmates, board officials said. According to sources, at least four schoolmates were likely involved in the forced leap. Beforehand, the boy had been ordered to pay an unspecified sum to the bullies or “prove his courage” by jumping from the second floor.

Although considered a die-hard problem at schools, bullying has been thrust into the national spotlight again since the allegedly forced suicide of a 13-year-old student in Otsu, Shiga Prefecture, last October recently came to light. He allegedly jumped off a condominium building after being bullied by schoolmates, who made him rehearse his own death.

In a related move Friday, the Osaka prefectural board of education said it will allow public elementary and junior high schools to suspend bullies if they fail to heed multiple warnings.

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23-year-old man arrested over death of girlfriend’s 2-year-old daughter

Posted on April 24, 2011. Filed under: Abuse Neglect Death | Tags: , , , , |

A 23-year-old man from Satte in Saitama Prefecture, has been arrested over the death of the 2-year-old daughter of his 22-year-old girlfriend with whom he was living.

According to police, the suspect, identified as Yoshihito Nakazawa, allegedly committed several acts of assault on the infant, including punching her in the stomach on Tuesday. On Wednesday, the child lost consciousness in the bathroom and was rushed to hospital where she died a short time later.

Nakazawa was quoted by police as saying, “She wouldn’t listen to what I said, so I did it to try and teach her some discipline.”

An autopsy has been ordered to establish the exact cause of death.

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