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Defendant in fatal Kobe stabbing rampage found not guilty due to insanity


A man arrested over a stabbing rampage in Kobe that left three dead, including his grandparents, and injured two others, in July 2017, has been found not guilty due to insanity.

In a ruling at the lay judge trial on Thursday, the Kobe District Court said the 30-year-old man will be committed to a psychiatric institution, Sankei Shimbun reported. Presiding Judge Kentaro Iijima said the court believed the man suffered from a mental disability and was not of sound mind when he carried out the crimes.

During the trial, prosecutors said the defendant was motivated by dissatisfaction with work and relationships. He was arrested at the crime scene while in possession of a knife and charged with the murder of his grandfather at his family home in Kobe's Kita Ward where he lived with his grandparents and his mother. He also attacked two neighbors there.

The bodies of the his grandfather and his wife, both 83, were found at their home and their 79-year-old neighbor was also found dead nearby. The defendant's mother, 52, and a 65-year-old neighbor, suffered serious knife wounds.

© Japan Today/Kyodo

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Hopefully this madman never sees daylight again. A permanent straitjacket would be a good idea.

RIP to the poor victims.

4 ( +8 / -4 )

It may be stating the exceedingly obvious but this guy is as nutty as a fruit cake.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

May the deceased now “Rest in Peace”. It is difficult to imagine how the two survivors, his mother and a neighbor can contend with this news.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

Oh! By the way: He’s still very much GUILTYof those crimes. It’s just the court focused more on his alleged “mental disability” & “not of sound mind when he carried out the crimes” and less on the prosecution’s assertions that “the defendant was motivated by dissatisfaction with work and relationships.” Many persons are dissatisfied with choices and interactions yet govern themselves to adjust and adapt to life. -

30 years old and committed to a psychiatric institution?

Perhaps its only a matter of time before he’s declared “cured” by the same doctor’s that helped in his defense and can rejoin Japanese society ?

1 ( +4 / -3 )

Acknowledged @zichi 5:59pm. Do J police really “pray” over bodies at crime scenes or a some simply putting their palms together and bowing in respect to the deceased? Can’t imagine they’re (the deceased) are waiting around to be release back into the cosmos. Still, it’s customary to show reverence to those that existed a humans along with us for this short life and respect others individual beliefs, customs and experiences. (Seems like we’ve been down this road before?)


“To each, their own”?

@zichi 5:59pm: "Rest in Peace" what does that really mean? Are dead people still alive until their killer is found guilty? Not a term I never use.” -

2 ( +2 / -0 )

correction: “…*show *respect…” notreverence”. (Save “reverence” for Obon, All Souls Day (Nov 2) or whatever one may choose to believe)

1 ( +1 / -0 )

@zichi "Rest in Peace" is a term used by Christians and generally indicates they died in the peace of the church it is a kind of prayer for the dead hoping that the Christian god will treat them mercifully on judgement day.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Oh I forgot to mention for me I use "Rest in Peace" to portray my feeling of sadness and condolences to the family and friends of those who have died.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

What a joke...

0 ( +3 / -3 )

Acknowledged & undisputed @zichi 6:30pm. - Declared not guilty” in the context of Japanese legal proceedings.

Never claimed to be an attorney but, from a layman’s viewpoint, he’s still very much “GUILTY” of the acts of murder and aggravated assault on multiple victims. Murder & aggravated assault are simply, “crimes”. His mental state “at the time” and/or his mental state “to stand trial” do not negate the fact that he is “GUILTY” of committing those crimes.

No one else did them. - Just him. -

Yes, I knew @5:59pm would ‘strike a chord’ with some that want always ‘compassion & rehabilitation’ for perpetrators but, perhaps, often lose sight of the victims. (I know you haven’t. You stated lived there.)

Another layman’s observation: it appears Japanese criminal proceedings have somewhat merged the trial, conviction and sentencing into one overall proceeding. Therefore, I will humbly acquiesce to those ‘accredited in law’ to explain the differences between the Japanese legal system and those abroad.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

Nor did I call for “capitol punishment” or “revenge@zichi 7:43pm.

However, wouldn’t it be ideal in a ‘fair & just’, civilized society, that ‘justice’ should always pursue ‘retribution’ (an appropriate punishment) of the convicted in respect for the victims? Given the severity of his “acts”, it seems improbable this perpetrator is of a mental state that could ever be receptive to any ‘rehabilitation’.

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

Capital punishment never reduced murders.

It certainly does prevent 100% of repeat offenses. Fact.

2 ( +5 / -3 )

Understood @zichi 9:12pm it’s a ‘system’ for handling such offenders. But is it any comfort to society knowing the likes of the former “Mary Bell” (U.K.), the former “Seito Sakakibara” and “Nevada-tan” are now living amongst free society, supposedly “rehabilitated”, after such heinous crimes ?

*- @zichi 9:12pm: “…expect he will receive the right type of treatment but I have no way of knowing… I expect he will be there for at least more than 20 years.*

The day may come when the medical and legal authorities will have to decide if he was rehabilitated and safe to return to society. If not he will remain in the institution.” -

1 ( +2 / -1 )

May I ask: please reserve your debate & comments about capitol punishment to others. Not disputing your remarks about that separate issue.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

This seems to be a part of responsibilities the society ought to take for creating and hence to defend an animal in animal-farm-like society called Japan according to a poster

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Not to ‘label’ others nor to be ‘labeled’ as having a specific set of beliefs @zichi 10:21pm, I will just affirm my earlier sentiments on this and today’s related matters:

*- “Acknowledged @zichi 5:59pm. Do all Japanese police really “pray” over bodies at crime scenes or, are some, simply putting their palms together & bowing in respect to the deceased? Can’t imagine they’re (the deceased) are waiting around to be release back into the cosmos. Still, it’s customary to show respect to those that existed as humans, along with us, for this short life. And respect others individual beliefs, customs and experiences. (Seems like we’ve been down this road before?)*


“To each, their own”.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

I killed my Grandpa and Grandma. Really? I don't remember anything. I bet this is what he has in mind. And the judge declared him insane. Not guilty. WTF

0 ( +2 / -2 )

zichi, so when do you not know what you are doing ? at 5, 10 , 15 or 21 years of age. From minor to adult is just a figment of someone's imagination. I shot birds with my BB gun at 6-7 yrs old against my Mom's wishes but I sure knew what I was doing. I also knew it was really wrong to shoot a human as I could be in serious trouble. But, the system today , at least in the USofA is "blame someone else" for your wrongs ! Never the accusers fault right ? The accused was abused or came from a lousy family or neighborhood - just couldn't help themselves. F'em . put a bullet thru their temple and be done with them. As for capitol punishment. yea, not much deterrent as the criminal usually spends 20 or more years imprisoned / appealing , etc and most times the crime is completely forgotten by the time the punishment is meted out. Give the Kobe killer a sword and make him commit Harakiri !! Like one person said, definitely eliminates repeat killers/killings and if done immediately knowing the criminal is 100% guility I believe it would open a few would be offenders eyes. Chop off a shoplifters hand/hands - put a stop to that crap too !

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

Really late reply I don't expect an answer @zichi, As I mentioned before I use RIP to show empathy I am not a Christian and I do not believe in any of the Gods. Just think it is nicer to say I hope they rest in peace or my condolences on the loss of your loved one rather than to say what I believe happens after you die.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Why can't you go insane and be insanely nice to others for a change?

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Murdering people but getting off due to insanity never brings back the dead who was gifted with only one life.

I hate these kinds of rulings. Should be executed.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Maybe something’s been deleted from this thread?


0 ( +1 / -1 )

Dumb question, perhaps, but, if the victims had not been among his own family, would he have been judged more harshly? I somehow guess that he would, but I have no strong logical basis for this.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

The article does not mention murder at all .

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

Apart from the fact he was found to be not guilty of murder.

Therefore he's not a murderer

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

Tom Winter, well said!

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

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