“And She Got Sick Of Feeding Her Kids?!!”

And so, here I go again, feeling bad about what seems to be a rather usual daily news. These monsters which are called “mothers” have a wide variety of its kind, as I have observed. One case – “It” goes to the park with a 6-year-old child, strangles him at the public toilet, and runs about sobbing and says, “I’m looking for my son! I can’t find him!”, then later on the police of course will know of what it did. What has to be done to stop all these?!!

According to the news that has been shown for almost every hour for the past 2 days, a 23-year-old woman in Kyodo, Osaka was arrested Friday after her two small children were found dead, possibly of starvation, in her apartment in the city of Osaka, and after local child welfare officials tried five times in vain to check on the kids in May.

Sanae Shimomura, who works at an adult entertainment shop, was quoted as telling investigators, “I got sick of feeding them and giving them baths.

Police suspect her 3-year-old daughter and 1-year-old son had been dead since late June, and are investigating, looking to press an initial charge of abandonment of bodies… (HEY, THE ELECTRIC CHAIR SOUNDS GOOD!!)

While there were no wounds on the children, their bodies were emaciated, indicating they may have died of starvation, the police said, adding they will carry out autopsies to determine the exact cause of death.

The arrest came after the police received a call from a colleague of the mother that an unusual odor was coming from the flat, which led to them finding the naked bodies of the two children, they said, adding Shimomura did not show up for work during the past several days.


-Source: Japan Times


Violent. Sick. Japanese.

What has never failed to shock me everytime is the news on children either being physically abused, bullied or killed by their own parents. Last July 17,a Japanese mother has admitted tying up her five- year-old daughter and spinning her in the washing machine in an attempt to discipline her. (What a bitch!)

Junko Egashira, 34, who is currently under arrest for allegedly strangling her daughter Mone to death last month, reportedly admitted to a string of abusive acts against the five-year-old. The mother admitted to investigators that on at least three occasions, she put adhesive tape across her daughter’s mouth, bound her arms and legs and placed her daughter inside the washing machine. Egashira, from Fukuoka prefecture in southern Japan, then taped down the lid, turned the water taps on and occasionally pressed the spin button, according to Kyodo news reports.

Other forms of abusive behavior reportedly included tying the child to a shelf with her arms spread out from which she hung buckets of water for hours on end.

The abuse is believed to have gathered pace in May this year, when Egashira, who reportedly divorced two years ago, moved to a new apartment with her daughter. Egashira’s abusive behavior is believed to have escalated to such an extent that she allegedly strangled her daughter to death on June 27.

“I coiled a plastic rope around my daughter’s neck and hanged her from a shelf,” she told police, according to Japanese media reports. “Later I found her dead. I didn’t think she would die.”

Child abuse cases handled by consultation offices in Japan hit a record 44,210 in fiscal 2009, rising for 19 straight years since statistics were first compiled in fiscal 1990, a government survey showed Wednesday.  The figure reflects an increase of 1,546 cases from fiscal 2008 when the previous record was set, the Health, Labor and Welfare Ministry said in a preliminary report.

During the reporting year that ended in March, there was only one case in which counselors made a compulsory visit to a household, where child abuse was suspected after the family had rejected the investigation, down from two cases in fiscal 2008 when such measures became possible under the revised child abuse prevention law.  ‘‘The increase likely comes against the backdrop of growing public awareness of abuse year by year,’’ a ministry official said, adding that moves by some local governments to expand their consultation services may also be a contributing factor.

The cases include those in which child consultation offices run by Japan’s 47 prefectural governments as well as 20 municipal governments took action, such as temporarily taking children into protective custody or visiting families after receiving inquiries or being informed about suspected child abuse.  The number of cases increased from fiscal 2008 in 24 prefectures, with Mie seeing the largest percentage increase of 37 percent to 541 cases,  followed by Ibaraki with a 34 percent rise to 718 and Miyazaki, up 27 percent to 365.  Among the 11 cities where the number of cases increased, Osaka had the biggest jump of 84 percent to 1,606 cases,  ahead of Shizuoka and Kanazawa where the figures grew 52 percent to 279 and 226, respectively.

-Sources: Morrison World Media; Japan Today

Yuriko’s Unforgettable Love

 Working at a hospital for special elderies for almost 3 years have been filled with unforgettable experiences… and conversations to top it all. Honestly, some of the reasons why quitting gives me second thoughts (despite the unbelievable fatigue) are the cute, funny grandmas on their 80’s, 90’s and a few 100 year-olds… And Yuriko is definitely one of my favorites. I get so amused by just talking to her.

     One December morning, right after having her breakfast, Yuriko was just in the mood to reminisce. “Have you ever been in love with a man you didn’t get to marry?”, she blurted while I was taking off her apron and setting off the breaks on her wheelchair to send her back to her room. I was so surprised that I thought I heard her wrong, but as I was helping her out of her sweater and taking off her shoes, she asked me the same question, but this time her voice was softer, and she was smiling and looking at the door to make sure there wasn’t anybody else around to hear. I laughed and answered with all sincerity, “Oh yes! And of course I have regretted that! Why?”… as I put my arms around her to lift her back to bed, put on her side rails and tucked her into her futton, her face was brightened with enthusiasm. “Can you promise not to tell my husband? He’s not home yet, is he?”, taking glances at the door and around her (her husband passed away years before she was admitted), “Of course, I promise! We’ll talk about it later, ok?”. She smiled.

     I went back to her minutes after to change her diapers, and as I do so, she went on where she left. “I can never forget him. I was 24 when we first went out to have some tea after a walk in the park. It was springtime and the trees were romantic. He was my first kiss, you know!”. I was so amused and couldn’t help but laugh out loud. Just again, she said, I can really never forget him. How much we loved each other. I don’t know why we suddenly drifted apart and I got married to someone else. But I love my husband too!… I just can’t forget the love we had.”

     And as I was tucking back her futton I asked her, “What’s his name? He must’ve had a really nice name!”…. She looked up at the ceiling, to the left and to the right her eyes rolled… “Eto..eto… eh? What was his name… Eh? What was his name again?…. I forgot! Hahaha!”… I laughed even more loudly. Her face so adorable with that childish, toothless grin. Iasked her again later that afternoon and the day after that. She only had one answer: “I didn’t talk about anything like that” with a smile…. What do I expect? She’s 94! Her white hair was thinning, and barely have any strength anymore. Indeed, eventually memory fades, body loses mobility, but somewhere in the depths of her heart, her unforgettable love remains… Name forgotten though.

“I Don’t Get It, Mama…” An Issue On The Stork

     On our way home one afternoon, my 5-year-old son Shuichi confronted me to tell the truth on how babies are MADE. “I don’t get it, Ma!”, he suddenly blurted. “The short video we watched together yesterday was almost as exact as the scene I had in my mind with your explanation to me about the stork delivering the babies… So how did I get inside your belly then?”. I wasn’t prepared for any answers that time and told him he’ll learn about it when he gets older. He also remembered my other statement that a man and a woman had to get married first before having a baby. I have somehow connected the dots… or I supposed I did. And he went on, “So if the stork delivered me to you as a baby, why did I need to get inside your belly? I quite understood you, though you were talking to your friends in Tagalog, that you were always in pain then, and that it wasn’t easy.” I did my best not to run out of Nihonggo to be understood. I explained to him that a mother has to keep the baby warm inside her belly for a few months until he is ready to come out…. He never runs out of why’s and how’s as always …. “There’s magic that’s way beyond explanation. Some things happen as they are supposed to and one of them is the miracle of birth… did you have fun today in school? What did you have for lunch?”… And I have successfully diverted his thoughts… for the meantime. Whew!…

Japan’s Swine Flu Deathtoll Reached 100

November 29, 2009 worldwide update by the U.N.’s World Health Organization (WHO) states that “207 countries and overseas territories/communities have reported laboratory confirmed cases of pandemic influenza H1N1 2009, including at least 8,768 deaths.”

A 74-year-old man, who was running a fever of more than 38 degrees, tested positive Friday for type A influenza and was given the antiviral drug Tamiflu.

He collapsed at home around 10:30 a.m. Saturday and died 6 1/2 hours later in a hospital, city officials said.

His swine flu infection was confirmed Sunday by virus gene analysis, they said.

According to the municipal government, the man had two chronic diseases — malignant lymphoma and diabetes. He was vaccinated for swine flu Nov. 16.

On Saturday, a man in his 20s in the city of Akita died after his bronchial asthma worsened due to the flu virus. He was also being treated for a chronic neurological disease, according to Akita officials.

Also Saturday, a 51-year-old man in Kasugai, Aichi Prefecture, died after suffering from severe pneumonia, officials said. The man did not have any chronic diseases and was prescribed Tamiflu on Dec. 1 when he visited a local hospital.

The nation’s first swine flu infection was confirmed in May, when an Osaka Prefecture high school student who returned from abroad tested positive at Narita International Airport.

The National Institute of Infectious Diseases said late last month that an estimated 10.75 million people have visited doctors due to influenza since early July. Many are believed to have been infected with swine flu.

Hooray…Ichihashi Arrested!!


This just in. Tatsuya Ichihashi is finally arrested!

At around 6:00pm today, November 10, 2009, Japanese police in Osaka have arrested the man they believe murdered British teacher Lindsay Hawker and left her naked body buried in a bathtub filled with sand after luring her to his flat for a private English lesson.

He was detained while attempting to board a ferry in Osaka, according to Japanese media. The suspect is believed to have been attempting to again avoid capture, with the ferry he was boarding headed for Okinawa.

Tatsuya Ichihashi was caught just hours after Linday’s mother appealed on television for him to turn himself in.  Mr Ichihashi’s mother earlier made an emotional plea on Japanese television on Tuesday, urging her fugitive son to turn himself in to police.

“It’s mom, Tatsuya,” said the woman in an audio message. “Dad and mom have decided to speak about our feelings, although we know you won’t like this.”

She said they felt happy when they heard their son had been working diligently and had told colleagues he wanted to be good to his parents.

“If so, please go to Gyotoku police station and tell them the truth. Please,” the woman said in a sobbing voice.

Police in Gyotoku on the outskirts of Tokyo are in charge of the case.

The arrest comes just days after police released new images of what they believed Ichihashi now looks like after undergoing a raft of cosmetic surgeries while a fugitive.

Police caught Ichihashi after discovering his alias and where he has been hiding out for the last month.

He has reportedly been working as a builder for the last year at a construction company in Ibaraki, Osaka and staying in a nearby company-owned dormitory, police sources told the Mainichi newspaper yesterday.

Ichihashi had been using the alias Kosuke Inoue and his fingerprints were discovered throughout the room he was staying in, police sources told the paper.


The New Face of the Murderer

new-face[1]Japanese police have finally released a photo of Tatsuya Ichihashi’s post-cosmetic surgery face.
Several facial features have apparently changed — he now has double-fold eyelids, a higher nose and thin lips. Two moles that had been on his left cheek have disappeared as well, according to police.

Ichihashi, 30, is wanted in connection with the murder of Lindsay Ann Hawker, 22, an English teacher.

In another development Thursday, investigative sources said Ichihashi had attempted to undergo cosmetic surgery in Fukuoka Prefecture in mid-October before his Oct. 24 face-lift in Nagoya.

The man who appeared at the clinic in Fukuoka Prefecture used the same alias as that used at the Nagoya facility, the sources said, without revealing the alias.

Why the police would release the photo but not the alias is puzzling, as the name he has been using would probably be very useful to the public.

Prior to the release of the photo, an expert consulted by Fuji TV had advised people to pay attention to Ichihashi’s ears, since few people have plastic surgery to alter their ear shape.

-courtesy of Japan Probe

An English Teacher Murderer


Tatsuya Ichihashi. An asshole, wanted for the murder of an English teacher, a British woman in 2007, apparently underwent a face-lift last month in Nagoya and may have had other other cosmetic surgeries performed to alter his looks, investigative sources said Wednesday, adding police plan to soon release postoperative photo images.

Ichihashi, 30, allegedly murdered Lindsay Ann Hawker, 22, who worked as an English-language teacher at a Nova language school, and left her naked corpse in a sand-filled bathtub on the balcony of his flat in Ichikawa, Chiba Prefecture.


Ichihashi’s eyelids and thick lower lip, as well as two vertical beauty marks on his left cheek, apparently don’t appear in recent images of him after plastic surgery, the sources said.

Ichihashi has been at large for 2 1/2 years, and this could be the first break in the case.

Chiba investigators have gone to Aichi to examine the first detailed information on the suspect since he went on the run in March 2007.

The Yomiuri Shimbun’s online edition reported Wednesday that Ichihashi may have had cosmetic surgery on his nose at a Nagoya clinic on Oct. 24, and also dropped by a cosmetic surgery clinic in Fukuoka Prefecture in mid-October. Chiba police suspect Ichihashi underwent plastic surgery several times, the report said.

The Asahi Shimbun said in its Wednesday morning edition that Chiba police concluded that Ichihashi had visited a hospital in Osaka, after analyzing the image of a man taken from a video camera and judging from the position of the eyes and other facial features, as well as his height. The Sankei Shimbun also reported he had had surgery in Osaka.

The acting head of the 1st Investigative Division of the Chiba Prefectural Police declined to confirm the media reports. He said investigators are dispatched whenever credible information about unsolved crimes is received, but was not able to comment on individual cases. An Osaka Prefectural Police spokesman said he could neither confirm nor deny the contents of the reports.

It is not clear whether the security footage in Osaka showed the man before or after an operation. In the video, he was wearing a black knit cap and had a beard, the Asahi said.

He made an appointment for a postsurgery evaluation at the hospital for Oct. 31 but failed to show up and hasn’t appeared there since.


On March 26, 2007, Ichihashi fled barefoot from police who went to his apartment to question him after Hawker’s school reported her missing. Her roommates said Ichihashi had stalked her and even visited her apartment.

Hawker’s family has visited Japan several times to spur the hunt for Ichihashi, while the National Police Agency raised the reward for information leading to his arrest from ¥1 million to ¥10 million in June this year.

Police usually offer rewards of ¥1 million to ¥3 million for information leading to the arrest of suspects in serious crimes such as murder, kidnapping, rape and arson. The NPA said it raised Ichihashi’s bounty because of the widespread media coverage.

Swine Flu Outbreak Reached Yamaguchi Ken

mask is a mustThe week that ended on Oct. 24 saw more than 1 million people come down with the new H1N1 influenza, the highest number of new cases since the virus was first reported in Japan, the National Institute of Infectious Diseases said Friday.


kids in masksParticularly here  in Ube City,  nearby elementary schools have suspended classes due to swine  flu cases affecting 6th graders. One of the 7 cases of swine flu diagnosed children happen to be my neighbor, and last October 27, a hospital colleague was not able to show up for work and filed a 1-week leave because her son was diagnosed with the deadly flu.

Swine flu vaccinations were meanwhile started in three prefectures Friday targeting people other than medical workers deemed at high risk of catching the disease.

The estimated number of new patients, most of whom are believed to be infected with the H1N1 strain, was 1.14 million, up from 830,000 the week before, bringing the cumulative total to 4.31 million since early July, when the weekly tally began to rise as the epidemic took hold.

The number of flu patients reported during the week by roughly 5,000 designated medical institutions jumped to 118,570 from 84,976 the week before.

In Kumamoto Prefecture, a man in his 20s became the 38th person to die of H1N1 in Japan, the prefecture said Friday.

The man was found dead Thursday evening at his home by a family member, and it was confirmed Friday that he had been infected with H1N1.

shingata influenza masksGifu, Wakayama and Yamaguchi prefectures on Friday became the first to begin vaccinating pregnant women and people with chronic diseases against swine flu. Other prefectures will begin vaccinations next month.

These two groups, considered at high risk of developing severe symptoms, were placed second on the government’s priority list to receive the vaccines.

Doctors and other health care workers top the list; vaccinations for them started nationwide last Oct. 19.

There are currently about 3,000 doses of H1N1 vaccine available in Yamaguchi Prefecture, while Gifu has doses for 8,000 people and Wakayama for 6,000. Hospital patients were the first group to be vaccinated Friday morning in the three prefectures.

H1N1 shotYamaguchi had initially planned to begin vaccinations in early November for pregnant women and people with chronic illnesses such as diabetes. But a recent government decision to limit the doses given to medical staff to one instead of two allowed the schedule to be moved up.


H1N1 vaccineSeparately, medical institutes began testing combined flu vaccines on children to determine if the dosage is appropriate.

Concerns have been expressed that the amount normally given to toddlers may not be sufficient to prevent the disease.

The test vaccines are being given to 360 children from 6 months to 13 years old at eight medical institutes around the country. The vaccines are manufactured by four Japanese pharmaceutical companies and are designed to prevent H1N1 and seasonal flu.


Wrong Conviction

This issue has been roaring all over Japan…

     Sugayasan after 17 yearsTape recordings of the interrogations of Toshikazu Sugaya, a man believed to have been wrongly convicted of the 1990 kidnapping and murder of a 4-year-old girl, reveal the process that led Sugaya to make a false confession, his lawyers said. The Utsunomiya District Public Prosecutors Office earlier this week released audiotapes containing the recorded interrogations of Sugaya to his lawyers at their request. The lawyers agreed with prosecutors not to publicly release the tapes. On Thursday, Sugaya and the lawyers explained the content of the tapes at a press conference in Tokyo. The tapes in question were recorded Dec. 7 and 8, 1992–after the first public hearing of the case at the district court and about two weeks before Sugaya denied the murder charge in court for the first time.

     The prosecutor at the Utsunomiya District Public Prosecutors Office who was in charge of his case at the time questioned Sugaya at the detention center where Sugaya was being held. In the recordings, Sugaya denied involvement in the murder, but the prosecutor pressed him to confess, citing the DNA test results. The lawyers plan to demand the prosecutor testify at the retrial. On Dec. 7, the prosecutor said, “I want to know the truth.” Sugaya denied the charge, saying, “I didn’t do it.” On the following day, the prosecutor said the DNA from the semen on the girl’s shirt matched Sugaya’s, adding, “How many people are there who have the same semen as you?” Then the prosecutor said: “You’re trying to trick me, aren’t you? Why don’t you look me in the eye when you speak?” Further pressed, Sugaya started to cry loudly and made the confession, saying: “Please give me a break. I’m sorry.” The prosecutor said: “When you take someone’s life, you have to face up to it. Otherwise you’re no good as a human being.” Sugaya said, “I understand.”

     At the press conference, Sugaya said: “I can’t forgive that prosecutor. I want him to apologize.” Chief lawyer Hiroshi Sato said, “If [the court] had listened to the tapes, it’d have been clear he was innocent.” Masaru Wakasa, a lawyer who served as head of the public safety department of the Tokyo District Public Prosecutors Office, said: “A defendant who has been indicted is a party in a trial who faces prosecutors in the court, and not a subject of interrogation. Prosecutors may question a defendant even after indictment, but it should only be in exceptional circumstances. Unless prosecutors can prove a defendant has agreed [to such questioning], there’s no way of denying that there were problems with the interrogation process.” Yoshitomo Ode, a professor at Tokyo Keizai University who is an expert in criminal procedure, said: “Despite the fact the trial had already begun, the prosecutor interrogated the defendant behind closed doors, asking questions he should have posed in front of the judge.

     17 years wasted in prison

This is unacceptable. Denying the confession in court in front of the same prosecutor who interrogated him must have put huge psychological pressure on [Sugaya], likely affecting his testimony afterward.” Sugaya repeatedly switched between confessing and denying the charge during the trial. Sugaya initially confessed to the murder in Ashikaga, Tochigi Prefecture, following his arrest in December 1991. In his first hearing at the Utsunomiya District Court in February 1992, Sugaya admitted all the allegations presented in the indictment. But he then denied the charges at the sixth hearing on Dec. 22 that year. Sugaya, 62, served 17 years of a life sentence for the Ashikaga murder, before being released in June after fresh DNA tests revealed it was highly unlikely he committed the crime.


-The Daily Yomiuri