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22-year-old man held over murder of 11-year-old boy in Wakayama town


Police in Kinokawa, Wakayama Prefecture, arrested a 22-year-old man early Saturday on suspicion of fatally stabbing an 11-year-old boy as he walked home from school on Thursday afternoon.

The boy, Toshi Morita, was attacked a few hundred meters from his school at around 4 p.m. Thursday. A local resident saw a man running away from the boy after the attack and called 119.

Speaking at an early morning news conference, police identified the suspect as Oshu Nakamura, an unemployed man who lives about 150 meters from the scene of the murder, TBS reported. He was arrested at around 1:30 a.m., but has denied the charge.

Police said Oshu lived with his parents and was reclusive, although some neighbors recalled seeing in front of his house occasionally swinging a bamboo sword. Police said he fit the description of a man seen wearing goggles and carrying knives near the vacant lot where the boy's body was found.

Morita was airlifted to hospital by helicopter but died shortly after arrival, police said, adding he had 10 wounds on his body, which appear to have been inflicted by different weapons.

© Japan Today

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That's twice in two days that Kinokawa has been in the news in JT. It's upsetting. I used to live not so far away.

2 ( +5 / -3 )

My hear with the boy's parents ...

4 ( +6 / -2 )

Find this beast and cage him.

7 ( +8 / -1 )

I recently start to read news here and this kind of accident happens a alot in Japan...it seems.

deepest condolences from Germany.

12 ( +16 / -4 )

The family had only just moved to the area, too. Just so sad and stupidly incomprehensible.

14 ( +14 / -0 )

Heartbreaking :(

Japan is not as safe as it used to be. I thought this before and still do - elementary kids shouldn't be allowed to walk home without adult supervision. They need to do "shuudan gekou" (go home together with other kids). It doesn't matter who - parent(s), grandparents or neighbors should volunteer to walk home with kids in the same route.

11 ( +15 / -4 )

Wait, did the man who stabbed him or the resident who found him call 119?

I agree with Ms. Alexander. There needs to be some supervision. Japan may be safer than most all countries, but I think it's negligent when I see 6-year-olds taking the train by themselves to go to school.

0 ( +7 / -7 )

Not again....why kill children? WHY??

8 ( +9 / -1 )

I hope this twit doesn't say he wanted to see what it was like to kill someone if and when they catch him.

What could've possibly been his motive to kill an 11 year old kid?

11 ( +11 / -0 )

And, another cowardly attack on a defenceless person! I've said it many times! Japan is a safe country if you are a middle aged male that can defend himself. However, if you are a child or a woman, or both, you are on the hit list! It's just so maddening that this kid's life has been snuffed at 11 years old by some psycho. What's the bet, when caught, he will say something like, "I just wanted to kill someone and anyone would do!"

Last week there was a woman that attacked a group of school kids in a park with a knife and the week before that there was some nutter that attacked another group of kids in a park and stomped on one kid breaking his leg. And,there have been many other cases of children being attacked and nutcases going into school grounds with knives over the past few months. Japan really has to start weeding out these wackos from its society!

6 ( +11 / -5 )

Find this beast and cage him.

then put him 6 feet deep

8 ( +9 / -1 )

Nutter what...? Are we up to 200 this year already? Does Japan have any mental health institutions at all? I know it's "hands off" and all if things get "mendokudai", but these things sure do seem to happen a lot.

Japan is not as safe as it used to be.

Japan is safer than before, just like most places.

0 ( +5 / -5 )

WHY! This scum needs to has his head beaten in, that is just wrong in so many ways. I'm more scared of the mental cases in Japan than anything else.

0 ( +5 / -5 )

Gee that is really scary because it is unpredictable. So sorry for his parents. Hope the catch the culprit right away and apply the law swiftly.

5 ( +6 / -1 )

The killer was probably bullied or abused. See's this young child as himself(weak and lack of confidence; or the opposite, this child showed confidence and courage) and snaps.

I imagine metal health screenings in the future for minor offenses and maybe even in the schools.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

One person interviewed by the cops is either suspicious or unusually laid-back...he said that he'd 'seen a man in the area with a knife before, and I think it's the same man'...you wouldn't call about someone with a knife the first time you saw them? Just really, really strange.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

This situation is so sad and overwhelming. Unfortunately the time when the kids walk alone or in groups will end soon and I am pretty sure parents will be required to walk them home under a schedule plan, and not only limited to assist them with traffic lights.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Horrible end to a short, little life. Poor guy, and poor family, and for what? There is a toorima epidemic here that needs to be addressed, and I hope they catch this guy and lock him up for life.

-6 ( +4 / -10 )

this has nothing to do with safety. this was a random act of violence by a deranged person. you are conflating the issue.

1 ( +5 / -4 )

Another nutcase out there. Pretty safe prediction: Once they catch him, he say he just wanted to "kill someone". I hope they find him soon and take him out of the public.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Japan is not as safe as it used to be.

Japan is just as safe as it used to be, in many ways more. It's now a days people have access to more information about what has always been going on that the perception of an increase in crimes of this nature are occurring.

If anything it's less.

4 ( +8 / -4 )

Japan is very safe from day to day sheet violence and petit crime, but it has as many, possibly more mentally ill people. Also because cringe is so low psychopaths address not filtered out early in life by the judicial system. I doubt think it helps that there are so many violent horror movies, often including deaths of children, it gives ideas to psychopaths and other crazy people.

-1 ( +5 / -6 )

Agree with Yubaru, at least in terms of murder. The data is out there:

“The number of murders and attempted murders recorded by police in 2013 declined 8.8 percent from the previous year to a postwar low of 939, the National Police Agency said.”


Perception and reality. As I mentioned last week, JT is a national news site that reports on crime taking place across Japan (pop. 125 million). If you added up the populations of the top 300 cities in the US (I know, an egregiously violent example), combined they would number about 90 million people. Can you imagine reading the crime stories from each of those cities, let alone the combined barbarity they would reveal?

In our home countries, this is rarely how we consume media, print, online or on TV. When I lived in San Diego, I read the San Diego Union Trib, in DC and still today I read the Post. Any such entity, naturally, covers local news and crime (often depressing enough), and only rarely discusses crimes further afield.

To me, relying on JT to understand reality on the ground in Fukuoka would be like relying on CNN to tell me what’s happening in Boise. When I read the Kobe Shimbum or watch NHK’s Kobe affiliate, it is incredibly rare that a murder is mentioned, this in a city of 1.5 million people BTW. Want a realistic depiction of your area’s safety, look to more local sources.

2 ( +6 / -4 )

local newspapers censor out talk of crimes, it doesnt mean they do not happen. Japan is not even in the too 10 safe countries list so lets be balanced, crimes occur and children need watching over. The police are reactive they canot predict everything that will happen.

-2 ( +3 / -5 )

What a nighmarish way for your life to end.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

If I was not subscribed to JT, I would never had known this event happened. Sometimes wish the sad news was reported less often, but on the same hand it will make me be more aware of my surroundings for a little while.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

An arrest? A male in his twenties...

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Looks like they arrested a guy in his 20's, just came up on the telly(Breaking News).

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Agree Japan is relatively safe but also knows that no where is 100% safe. The idea of kids constantly walking to and from school as well as other places does scares the hell out of me. JT also does a good of reporting these horrible incidents. There is no explainable reason to take another person's life, especially that of a child. UNFORGIVEABLE.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Just watched the detailed news.

The cops got the suspect confined to an Area and expect an arrest soon, live reporting is ongoing.

Prefer tv-news over written news paper or online.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Rest in peace

1 ( +1 / -0 )

I hope the caught the right guy, and didn't pin this on someone convenient to ease the public's fears.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

As long as they catch the criminal that did it and not force a confession from someone they merely decide to suspect. Police here have a 99% conviction rate and a lot of innocent people are quite possibly behind bars because of these tactics to pin it on someone quickly as opposed to proper cateful detective work. Let's wait and see.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

Probably practicing before he went to join ISIS.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Very sad. Im an almost paranoid parent when it comes to safety, and even I was comfortable with my kids at that age walking home alone, and going out alone. You cannot keep an 11 year old boy in the house under constant parental supervision. There was nothing the parents could have done differently. I hope this is the right perp and that he gets put in prison for the rest of his miserable existence.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

I suspect that behind this crime is a case of mental illness - one of the least understood areas of human health.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

As I said before, and was thumbed down for, there is a serious sickness in this society, when pretty much every day you hear about random slashings and people who "just want to know what it's like to kill someone".

That said, there are those who deserve nor would benefit from any help, and this 22 year old is one of them. I hope they lock him up with a roommate in general population; we'll see how his hikkokomori comfort zone is. And preferably, put him with some big, angry cellmate who doesn't like people acting 'eccentric' and has a violent temper.

-9 ( +5 / -13 )

HORRIBLE ( sad face ) RIP

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Glad they caught this sicko but the parents life is probably ruined.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

Geetings First My Sincerely Condolences to the Parents, Family, E Friends, of Toshi Morita. R. I. P. very Sad heard that JP is so danger now B'cuz My Three Grandkids live around Nagano and when I was there visiting I Love the Town everything was Quiet, Peaceful, I was so Happy that They better live there ! My Son live there for the last 17 Years and He, E His Wife Own a English School, but I can't Agree that Parents let Kids walking alone to School, I hope now They Care more and realize that everywhere is danger and the World Change a lot. God Bless JP, USA and Keep safe the Children's around the World.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I am also hoping that this is the monster. As Americanhonor pointed out the police tactics are very questionable. Whether they coerse a guilty plea or not, families really need to be careful with their kids.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

I am also hoping that this is the monster. As Americanhonor pointed out the police tactics are very questionable.

Well it was basically gift-wrapped for them, because the lunatic had already been seen swinging his swords and whatever outside before, not to mention he lived only a few houses down from where he killed the kid. This is definitely a tragic death that could have been avoided with better institutions. Having a mentally unstable person is one thing, but having him swinging weapons around the street and still doing nothing about it is even worse.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

It's hard to believe such a grown-up, though still 22-year-old, having stabbed the 11-year-old kid. Moreover, um and aah, with a number of different weapons. Nevertheless, the suspect's facial expression is graphically telling his personality in any way. I think we'd better not judge others by our own standard. I mean, there are dreadful people in the world.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

The police say the boy's DNA was found at the entrance of Nakamura's home. I hope they are not lying, and that they got the right guy..

0 ( +0 / -0 )

My wife wants my 8 year old daughter to walk alone to her piano classes in Osaka, so she can go to the gym in the afternoon.. The lesson are in another apartment complex which she would have to ride to the eighth floor. Reading stories like this reaffirms that noway is she walking alone.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

To those who want to helicopter-parent their kids every day: I wonder how long you want to continue that? This boy was 11, so quite capable of running away from pretty much every adult (try to catch an 11 year old who does not want to be caught, and see...) So, what is the cutoff date.... 12, 13, 14, 15? You want to accompany even your adult children?

And. A 22-year old with a knife bent on murder can kill anyone... even if you were to accompany your kid, it would not make much difference. It unrealistic to expect perfect safety 24/7 everywhere. Japan is as safe as any country can be, but life is not safe.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

This article doesn't give much information, but a witness testimony is proven to be unreliable in majority of the cases worldwide, so let's hope that the Japanese police find conclusive evidence and convict the right person, and not rely on "confessions". Just because a man looks suspicious and has a bamboo sword doesn't mean that he's a killer...

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Just because a man looks suspicious and has a bamboo sword doesn't mean that he's a killer...

Maybe not, but I wouldn't mind if they locked him up too.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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