FAMOUS MURDERS IN JAPAN INVOLVING CHILDREN: MOTHERS AND CREEPS KILLING KIDS AND CHILDREN KILLING CHILDREN

MURDERS BY MOTHERS IN JAPAN

In November 1999, a housewife in Tokyo murdered the two-year-old daughter of her friend---and playmate of the murderer's two-year-old daughter---because she felt the victim’s mother had disrespected her and was jealous that victim won admittance to a prestigious elementary school and her daughter did not. The housewife strangled the 2-year-old girl to death with a scarf in a rest room next to a temple and took the girl’s body to her parent's house and buried her in their backyard. Three days later she turned herself into police. When news of the story broke, newspapers were flooded with letters offering sympathy not for the victim’s family, but for the murderer, apparently understanding the social pressures that drove her to commit the crime.

In May 2000, a mother was charged with trying to kill her young daughter by poisoning her tea to collect on a $300,000 life insurance policy. The plan was uncovered when the mother, a practical nurse, tried to poison the daughter while she was in the hospital and doctors analyzed the tea and found it contained a large amounts of an asthma drug that is lethal in high doses. The mother had received $200,000 in life insurance money after her 9-year-old daughter and 15-year-old son died in 1997.

In May 2006, a woman named Suzuka Hatakeyama was arrested for strangling to death a 7-year-old neighborhood boy who was found dead beside a river in Fujisatomachi, Akita Prefecture. Hatakeyama said she committed the murder because of anger over the drowning death of her 9-year-old daughter a month before. Later it was revealed that Hatakeyama murdered her daughter too. In 2008 she was sentenced to life in prison.

In February 2006, a Chinese woman married to a Japanese man stabbed two children to death in her car while her 5-year-old daughter looked on. The murder took place near Kyoto. The woman is said to have had a difficult time adjusting to living in Japan and had been paranoid about the way her daughter was treated at school. During an interrogation she told police: “Since I don’t speak Japanese well, I couldn’t communicate [with mothers whose children attend her daughter’s kindergarten] and was frustrated by the differences in lifestyles.” She also said, “I felt other children were to blame for my daughter not getting along [at the kindergarten] and that my daughter would be spoiled further [if I did nothing] so I killed them.”

In April 2009, a couple in Himeji, Hyogo Prefecture, was arrested after the 4-year-old son of the woman was found in a refrigerator. The woman said the body had been in the refrigerator since July 2007. “My son died after we tied him up and put him in a box two years ago,” she said. The woman’s husband, who was not the boy’s father, reportedly beat the boy every time he cried.

In October 2010, a 32-year-old woman in Hiroshima was arrested on suspicion of killing her two children---aged four and one---by strangling them with a towel. The woman, Kyoko Takashi, told investigators, “I became exhausted caring for the children and lost my confidence [in being a parent].

Good Websites and Sources: Wikipedia List of Serial Killers by Country Wikipedia ; Wikipedia article on Tsutomu Miyazaki Wikipedia ; Cannibal Issei Sagawa francesfarmersrevenge.com ; Issei Sagawa Story on TruTV.com trutv.com/library/crime/serial_killers ; BBC Report on Lucie Blackman’s Murderer bbc.co.uk ; Blog Report on the Akihabara Killer xorsyst.com/japan/tomohiro-kato ; Dismemberment Crimes on the Rise associatedcontent.com

Links in this Website: CRIME IN JAPAN Factsanddetails.com/Japan ; THEFTS AND ROBBERIES IN JAPAN Factsanddetails.com/Japan ; JUVENILE CRIME IN JAPAN Factsanddetails.com/Japan ; FAMOUS MURDERS IN JAPAN Factsanddetails.com/Japan ; FAMOUS MURDERS IN JAPAN INVOLVING CHILDREN Factsanddetails.com/Japan ; YAKUZA AND ORGANIZED CRIME IN JAPAN Factsanddetails.com/Japan ; YAKUZA ACTIVITIES AND VIOLENCE Factsanddetails.com/Japan ; AUM SHINROKYO CULT AND THE TOKYO SUBWAY SARIN GAS ATTACK Factsanddetails.com/Japan ; SECURITY, GUNS AND POLICE IN JAPAN Factsanddetails.com/Japan ; LEGAL SYSTEM IN JAPAN Factsanddetails.com/Japan ; DEATH PENALTY AND PRISON IN JAPAN Factsanddetails.com/Japan

Girl Who Disappeared for Nine Years in Japan

In January 1999, a girl who had disappeared nine years earlier was found in the house of a 37-year-old man who had abducted her in November 1990 when she was nine. The girl had been kidnapped at knife point as she walked home from school and forced into the trunk of the man's car.

The girl was kept in a second story room in a house in Kashiwazaki, Niigata Prefecture that the man shared with his mother. The girl said she never left the room for nine years because she was afraid of the man, who beat her and used a stun gun whenever she tried to escape. The man's mother didn't know of the existence of the girl and said she didn't go to the second floor of her house out of fear of a violent outburst from her son.

The kidnapper was unemployed and had a record of mental illness. He fed the girl three meals a day, gave her clothes, cut her hair and painted a yellow line on the floor that she was not allowed to cross.

The girl was found by hospital staff who visited the house where the girl was kept. Local authorities were criticized because the mother of the kidnapper asked social workers to check out the behavior of her son, who was a convicted child molester, but they didn't respond.

The behavior of police was even worse. They claimed they found the girl when in fact they hadn't and ignored requests by the hospital staff to investigate. When the chief of the Niigita prefecture police was notified about the girl he refused to break away from a mahjongg game at an inn with a National Police Agency official, who was supposed to be inspecting the prefectural police force.

Killing of Eight Children in Japan

In June 2001, a 38-year-old unemployed man, Mamoru Takuma, burst onto an elementary school in Osaka and stabbed eight children to death with a knife and injured 13 other students and two teachers. Most of the dead has been stabbed in the back, stomach or chest. It was the worst school-related killing in Japan's history.

Takuma calmly entered the school around 10:00am and walked through hallways and four classroom with first and second graders, slashing anyone he encountered with a 15-centimeter kitchen knife that he punched for $65 before he arrived at the school.

Takuma entered a second-grade classroom that has just finished music class. Without uttering a word he stabbed three children in front of a blackboard. He then wandered around the classroom stabbing and slashing several children.

After that he entered another classroom. Ignoring a teacher who threatened him with a chair, he approached three children, stabbing one in the arm, one in the back and one in the stomach. He then stabbed the teacher while he was calling the police. Finally, Takuma was wrestled to the ground by teachers about 10 minutes after the entered the building and was arrested shortly afterwards by police.

Eyewitness Accounts During Killing of Eight Children

A 10-year-old boy told the Yomiuri Shimbun, "I heard some screaming over the school's public address system that a stranger had broken in. Then we started running."

One boy who was stabbed in the back told Asahi Shimbum, "We were rearranging our desks when this stranger suddenly came into our classroom and started stabbing us."

A nine-year-old girl told the Yomiuri Shimbun, "I ran away because I was so scared. The man fought with a teacher near the building's exit. I heard him shout something after the teacher pined him to the ground."

An 11-year-old girl told the Yomiuri Shimbun, "I saw a girl lying on a floor in front of a classroom as I was walking towards the playground during the recess. Then I spotted two girls lying on the stairs. One of them was moaning, but the other was not moving at all."

Motive for Killing Eight Children

Takuma said he felt he was the at the end of his rope. He had just lost his job, he was sin the middle of divorce proceedings with his third wife, he owed money for car and was behind on his rent. After he was arrested he said, "I've become tired of everything. I tried to commit suicide but couldn't quite kill myself. I wanted to be arrested and hanged."

Takuma said he originally planned to run over a bunch of pedestrians with a dump truck but in the end chose children as targets because he knew they couldn't run away quickly and he could easily kill them and said he was jealous of the school because he once dreamed of going there.

Takuma had worked as a janitor at another primary school. Students there were said to be terrified of him because he frequently yelled at students for they way they disposed of their trash. In Match 1999, he was arrested for serving tea laced with tranquilizers to four teachers at the school.

In August 2003, Takuma was sentenced to death. He was executed in September 2004, less than a year after he received the death sentence, It was rare for an execution to be carried out so quickly after the sentence was given.

Attacks on Children in Japan in the Early 2000s

In May 2003, a man in Fukuoka threw a flammable substance on a 10-year-old boy and set him on fire as he walked home from school. The child survived but had serious burns on his back and upper body. The attacker was a 45-year-old man depressed over his mother’s hospitalization and angry over a perceived slight by a middle school student.

In November 2004, a seven-year-old girl was abducted and killed in Nara. The crime received a fair amount of publicity. The killer, a 36-year-old newspaper delivery man named Kaoru Kobayashi, was caught a month later. After his arrest Kobayashi said, “After kidnaping the girl, I took her to my home and drowned her, dunking her face in water in a bathtub. Then I dumped her body.”

Kobayashi said he wanted to be remembered as the “second Tsutomu Miyazaki.” After the girl was dead the killer cut out her teeth and mutilated her mouth with a knife and made cuts on other parts of her body. After the murder he sent taunting messages to the family of the girl, using the victims cell phone. Kobayashi was given a death sentence.

In 2003, a family of four was murdered in Fukuoka by three Chinese men who robbed them of a little over $300. The murdered man was strangled with a necktie. His wife was drowned in a bathtub, their son was smothered a pillow and their daughter was strangled. Their bodies were found weighted down with dumbbells in Hakata Bay. The men, who were in Japan on student visas, were captured. Two were given the death penalty. One was given life in prison. They said they killed the family out of concern that the family members could identify them.

Of the 139 kidnapings attempted in 2003, 116 victims were elementary school age children or younger. About 90 percent of the attackers desired to sexually abuse or molest their victims.

Attacks on Children in Japan in the Mid 2000s

In 2005 there were several headline-making murders involving children. In December, a 12-year-old girl was fatally stabbed by her juku teacher in Uji in Kyoto Prefecture. The teacher, a part time instructor and student at a local university, told police that the girl was very rude and disrespectful to him and he had trouble teaching her.

In late November a 7-year-old girl was kidnaped and strangled to death by a Peruvian man---with a history of sex crimes in his home country---as the girl walked home from school in Hiroshima prefecture. A week or so later another 7-year-old girl was kidnaped as she walked home from school in Tochigi Prefecture. Her body was found the next day in Ibaraki Prefecture. Her killer was never found.

In April 2006, a 15-year-old boy killed a 13-year-old girl, first striking her over the head and then strangling her on the third floor of a disused pachinko parlor. The two were friends. The boy apparently killed the girl because she rejected him.

In October 2007, a 7-year-old girl was fatally stabbed at the entrance of here home in Kakogawa, Hyogo Prefecture. The girl was stabbed in chest and the abdomen. In the ambulance on the way to the hospital she said he was stabbed by a man.

Ryo Katsuki, who killed a 5-year-old girl, was sentenced to 15 years in prison.

Impact of Attacks on Children in Japan

After the murder of two 7-year-old girls as they walked home from school in Hiroshima and Tochigi prefecture in 2005, parents escorted their children to school and supplying their kids with noise makers they could use if the encountered a creepy stranger.

The wave of crime against children lead parent to avoid letting their children walk alone to school, requiring them to walk in groups escorted by an adult. Many schools locked their gates and gave teacher and mothers security patrol duties. Many schools installed security cameras and showed films or skits telling students what to do if approached by a stranger.

A wide ranges of merchandise is available to protect kids from potential attackers. Some noisemakers have global positioning devices that help their parents keep track of where they. One company even markets knife-resistant clothing for children.

A wide range of GPS devices, smart cards and security services and devices are available that allow parent to monitor and track their children and get help if their think their child is in trouble. Some families use GPS-enabled cell phones and GPS-enabled cell phone services that can provide parents with a map of where there children are and summon a security guard for $100 if desired; smart cards with IC card readers that make sure only children not intruders can enter certain facilities such as cram schools; and special GPS devices designed specifically to keep track of children.

Some school children carry plastic radio frequency identity (RFID) tags on their backpacks that keep track of their whereabouts on a central computer, which in turn informs parents by e-mail when their kids enter the school ground and when they leave. RFID technology was developed by Fujitsu. It is also use by motorists to pay tolls electronically without stopping at booths and by airlines to keep track of baggage.

Murders by Juveniles in Japan in the 1990s and Early 2000s

In the last decade or so a number of murders and attacks by juveniles have received widespread media attention. In September and October 1994, three young men aged 18 and 19 bullied and killed four men aged 19 to 26 over an 11 day period in Osaka, Aichi and Gifu Prefectures, The three were sentenced to death.

In 2000 14- and 15-year-old girls were arrested for seriously beating up a classmate over a jacket and an 11-year-old boy stabbed his mother to death after she tried to stop him from killing himself over poor performance in school. In 1998, a 13-year-old stabbed his teacher to death because she scolded him about being late and a 15-year-old stabbed a policeman in an effort to get his gun.

In September 1999, a 16-year-old girl was stabbed to death by a male teenage stalker. During the stabbing, the girl was able wrestle one knife from the boy only to be stabbed by a second knife. In April 1999, an 18-year-old young man strangled a 23-year-old housewife and her 11-month-old baby during a robbery attempt.

In May 2000, a 17-year-old boy hijacked a bus in Saga prefecture and stabbed three people, including a 68-year-old woman who died from chest wounds, and held a large kitchen knife at the throat of a 6-year-old girl, who was traveling by herself to her grandparent's house, and held eight female passengers and a the driver on the bus hostage for 15 hours. The hostages were released and the boy was captured when police stormed the bus.

In May 2000, a teenager randomly killed a 65-year-old housewife in Toyokawa, Aichi Prefecture. The teenager bludgeoned the victim with hammer and then stabbed her in the face with a knife. Afterwards he told the police he committed the crime because he "wanted to experience killing" and "thought it would be wrong to kill a young person with a future ahead of them."

In August 2000, a 15-year-old boy in southern Kyushu broke into a neighbor’s houses and attacked six family members with a knife, killing three. In July 2000, a 16-year-old boy in Okayama beat his 50-year-old mother to death with a baseball bat. In the latter case, the boy was angry that his mother borrowed money from him but refused to say what the money was spent on. The mother was badly in debt and pursued by debt collectors. In June, 2000 a 17-year-old boy attacked some boys at school with a baseball bat and then bicycled home and bludgeoned his mother to death.

Kobe Killer

In May, 1997, the severed head of an 11-year-old boy, who had disappeared from near his house a few days earlier, was found by a janitor at the gate of junior high school in Kobe along with a note that read: "Well this is the beginning of the game. Police stop me if you can. I enjoy committing murder." The victim had been strangled and decapitated. The mouth was stuffed with paper and the body was deposited on a nearby hillside. A few days before the boy disappeared two dead kittens, one with its paws severed, where found at the same spot the head was placed.

Japanese were shocked when they found out that the person who committed the grisly murder was a 14-year-old boy, who confessed to the beheading as well as the beating death of a 10-year-old schoolgirl with a hammer and attacks on two other girls with hammers.

The boy, now known as the Kobe Killer, was apprehended after he wrote a letter to a local newspaper that said: "I can relieve myself of hatred and feel at peace only when I'm killing someone. I can ease my own pain only by seeing others in pain...If anything frustrates me again, I'll destroy three vegetables a week." Vegetables was a reference to the feeble-minded children he preyed on.

The boy was sentenced to a juvenile prison but according to Japanese law could only be detained until the age of 20. He was released from jail in 2004 and given a job with his identity protected by privacy laws. He has promised to atone for his crimes and has sent part of his monthly paycheck to the families of the children he murdered. He has also said he wants to apologize directly to the families but the families have said they do not want to meet him.

Murders by Juveniles in Japan in the Mid 2000s

In July, 2003 a 4-year-old boy was forced to jump off the top a building in Nagoya by a a 12-year-old boy. The killer lured the toddler away from an electronics story and threatened the toddler with scissors and molested him. The boy told police, “After stripping him naked, I kicked him in stomach. When I started hurting him with the scissors, he began screaming far more loudly than I had expected. So I thought it better to throw him off the roof instead of allowing him to return to his parents.”

In February 2005, a 52-year-old teacher was stabbed to death and another teacher and school dietician were seriously injured in a knife attack at an elementary school by a 17-year-old boy in Neyagawa, a town outside of Osaka. The dead teacher was stabbed through the back, with the knife piercing his heart. The boy, who received a 12 year prison sentence for the crime, wrote his diary about his fascination with the Kobe Killer.

Eleven-Year-Old Killer in Japan

In June 2004, an 11-year-old, sixth grade girl brutally murdered a 12-year-old classmate in a school in Sasebo, Nagasaki Prefecture by slitting her throat with a box cutter. The killer lured the victim into an empty study room, forced her to sit on a chair, and then with her hands over the victim’s eyes cut her from behind so viciously her head was about halfway decapitated. The killer said she “waited for the girl to die,” kicking her in the head and sides as she lay on the floor, before returning to her class room with the boxcutter in her hand and telling her teacher, “the blood is not mine.”

The victim and killer were close friends. The killer said she became enraged when the victim called her “prissy” and “overweight” on a web site the victim created. She told police. “I didn’t like what she wrote about me on the Net. I called her [to the study room] and slashed her neck.” About what the victim said on the web site, the killer said “I became totally fed up with that. Until then I had nothing against her.”

The killer was regarded as good-natured and friendly. It was revealed, however, that she was a big fan of the blood-and-gore film Battle Royale and an accompanying video game in which students kill other students as a form of sport. The killer was also reportedly upset over recently being forced to quit the basketball club because her parents wanted her to devote more attention to her studies.

The feelings of rage that drove the girl to commit the murder are not unusual in Japan. One junior high school girl wrote on an Internet chat line, “I have experienced the feeling that I hated someone to an extent that I wanted to kill the person...a couple of times.” Another girl said on a television interview show, “I understand so painfully how the offender felt. I have experienced being lonely, and being disliked....and forced to do things by my parents.”

The killer seems to have not realized what she did. She said she wanted to apologize to the victim for what she did. A specialist in youth crime told the Washington Post: “Many Japanese children live in small block apartment with no pet and are not exposed to real death. They may not understand the concept as much as they should.”

A school counselor told the Washington Post: “What is so scary is that she seemed normal in every way. She did not seem like a troubled girl; there was no warning sign picked up by her teacher or parents. She could have been any of our children.”

Murders by Juveniles in Japan in the Late 2000s

In January 2008, a woman and two of her children were found dead with knife wounds in their necks in a burned out apartment in Aomori Prefecture. The murderer, the woman’s 18-year-old, oldest son, was arrested by police at a train station with a knife. The killer collected knives and had many knife marks in his room. A friend of one of the victims, the 15-year-old second son, said the “He told me when he was a sixth-grader, his big brother held a knife to his neck. He also said that he felt someday he might be killed.” The mother was 43 and divorced. The other victim was the killer’s 13-year-old sister,

In March 2008, an 18-year-old recent high school graduate killed a 38-year old man by pushing him to the tracks of an uncoming train at a train station in Okayama. The youth did not know the man and said he planned the killing while eating a hot dog an hour before he did it. He had initially planed to kill someone with a knife but decided to push someone on the tracks instead because he was unable to muster up the courage to stab anyone. He reportedly told police one reason he committed the crime was to “get into prison.”

The victim was standing in the front of a line waiting for a train. The killer was standing behind him and calmly pushed him on the tracks about five seconds before the train approached. An alarm whistle sounded. Witnesses screamed in horror, The train came to a stop 25 meters after hitting the victim but it was to late to save him. A policeman patrolling the platform quickly arrested the suspect. The 18-year-old will stand trial for murder.

In July 2008, a 15-year-old girl fatally stabbed her father at their home in Kawaguchi Prefecture with a 20-centimeter-long kitchen knife in the right side of his chest and his forehead several times. The crime was a shock. The girl was popular and a good student. Later she told police she was “sick of everything” and wanted to kill everyone in her family and die herself. She had initially said she killed her father suddenly after waking from a dream that he was going to kill her family.

In July 2009, a 13-year-old boy stabbed his father to death after his mother and 20-year-old brother left the house. After the murder the boy went to school. They boy had been scolded by his father for poor grades and recently running away from home. The father was found dead with a knife wound in his neck while his son was in school.

In October 2009, a big deal was made about the publication of a book that released the name and other information of a 28-year-old who killed a mother and daughter in 1999 when he was minor on the grounds that disclosure of such information violates privacy laws. Some book stores refused to sell the book. Many of those that sold it sold all their copies the first day it was released. The man was in jail appealing his death sentence to the Supreme Court.

In June 2010, a 15-year-old boy stabbed his 15-year-old female desk partner in the shoulder and the side with a 12-centimeter fruit knife. The boy acted suddenly and without provocation The victim suffered serious wound from the knife that entered her liver and reached her kidney.

In March 2011, a 20-year-old student was arrested for killing a three-year-old girl he kidnapped in the rest room of a supermarket and smuggled out of the store in a backpack.

See Dismembered Bodies , Famous Murders

Sixteen-Year-Old Boy Stabbed Girls in Random Attacks in Saitama, Chiba Prefectures

In December 2011, the Yomiuri Shimbun reported: A 16-year-old boy has been arrested on suspicion of slashing a middle school student as she walked home in Misato, Saitama Prefecture, in November, and police suspect he also stabbed an 8-year-old girl in a nearby city earlier in December. The police quoted the boy as saying, "I didn't care who it was, but I wanted to kill someone walking on a street." [Source: Yomiuri Shimbun, December 7, 2011]

According to the police, the boy is suspected of trying to murder the 15-year-old third-year middle school student by slashing her in the jaw at about 5:45 p.m. on Nov. 18. The girl was hospitalized for about 10 days after the attack.

The boy was detained Monday evening after a police officer stopped him in Misato as he rode a bicycle about 2.7 kilometers from the scene of the crime. He was found to be in possession of a folding knife with a 15-centimeter blade and a machete with a 17-centimeter blade. The boy was arrested on suspicion of violating the Firearms and Swords Control Law. The charge was upgraded to attempted murder after he confessed to the slashing.

The boy reportedly told police he was carrying the weapons because he "wanted to kill someone walking by." The boy also reportedly admitted he stabbed an 8-year-old girl in a residential area of Matsudo, Chiba Prefecture, at about 3 p.m. on Dec. 1. The girl was stabbed on a street about two kilometers from the first attack.The primary school second-grader was stabbed six times in the shoulder and left abdomen as she walked home from school. The weapon pierced the girl's thick jumper, and reached her lung at least once. Several nearby residents witnessed a young man fleeing the scene on a bicycle. "I did it," the boy allegedly told investigators. He claimed he did not know either victim, but said he had targeted girls.

According to sources, the boy had attended a private high school in Chiba Prefecture, but dropped out days after he took a cat's head to school in a cardboard box. He reportedly told acquaintances that he had tortured animals. In a chilling admission, he also told them, "Next, I plan to kill a person." The boy lived with his parents and younger brother in Misato. Police have seized several knives found in his bedroom.

The boy's 71-year-old grandmother was stunned at his arrest. "He was a good boy who bought me souvenirs when he went on holiday," she said to reporters Tuesday. "I can't believe what has happened. But I'm extremely sorry for the victims." Former classmates of the boy also were shocked. "He was quiet and didn't stand out much," a primary school classmate said. "I never imagined he'd do something like this."

The boy reportedly caused no problems at high school, and had rarely been late or absent. The school questioned him after receiving reports about the dead cat incident in late October, but he denied any involvement. However, the boy applied to leave the school a few days later. "Until then, he hadn't caused any trouble and he hadn't brought a knife to school," the deputy principal said. "I can't fathom what's happened to him."

According to the police, a security camera at a company near the Misato slashing site captured what appeared to be the boy riding a bicycle. The police began seeking the boy after receiving a tip that he had boasted about his intention to kill someone.

Taiwanese Student Blamed for Killing Two Taiwanese Women in Tokyo

In January 2011, two Taiwanese female students were killed in Tokyo. A Taiwanese man was blamed for the murder. Joseph Yeh wrote in the China Daily: A fellow countryman and male student familiar with the two Taiwanese females killed in Tokyo could be responsible for the alleged double homicide, local media reported yesterday.Several local media yesterday quoted unidentified sources as claiming that Japanese authorities were looking for a male student who nobody has been able to contact since the incident. [Source: Joseph Yeh, China Daily/Asia News Network, January 7, 2011]

Japanese authorities said they have formed a special task force of 70 investigators and police officers to look into the case. The police searched the Taiwanese man's room, which is just a 10-minute walk from the crime scene. They found blood stains in his room yesterday afternoon and took away several boxes of objects from the dormitory of the suspect who has gone missing. His name is still being withheld by Japanese police. He was reportedly an acquaintance of the victims and they attended the same school.

The two young Taiwanese females, identified as 25-year-old Chu Li-chieh from Nantou County and 23-year-old Lin Chih-ying from Taichung, were found covered in blood in an apartment in the Taito area of eastern Tokyo. One was found dead at the scene and the other seriously injured, but later pronounced dead in hospital.The apartment building was being used as a dormitory for the two, who studied in a nearby Japanese language school.

According to Japanese reports, initial investigations showed that Lin was found dead at the entrance of the room, still wearing her boots, while Chu was found inside the room. Police didn't located any possible murder weapons in the locked room, and no keys were found inside the room as well, police said. The fatal stab wounds were on both Chu and Lin' necks, but dozens of knife wounds were also found on their backs. This indicates that the killer may have stabbed them several times after they fell onto the ground following the initial wounds to their necks, evidence that might suggest whoever responsible for the crime has deep hatred toward the victims, police said.

Japanese authorities also pointed out that the tragedy most likely occurred between 8:00 a.m. and 9:20 a.m. Thursday. Friends of the victims had called Lin at 8:00 a.m. to confirm an appointment. Lin answered the call, but did not pick up the phone when called again at 9:20 a.m. Reports claim the two Taiwanese students had made an appointment with their classmates for a travel tour scheduled the same day. After the two did not show up as promised, classmates informed their lecturers at the language school, who later found their bodies in the dorm.

Text Sources: New York Times, Washington Post, Los Angeles Times, Daily Yomiuri, Times of London, Japan National Tourist Organization (JNTO), National Geographic, The New Yorker, Time, Newsweek, Reuters, AP, Lonely Planet Guides, Compton’s Encyclopedia and various books and other publications.

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© 2009 Jeffrey Hays

Last updated April 2012

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