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Assistant nurse arrested for tearing off patient's nails in repeat offense

47 Comments

An assistant nurse has been arrested for tearing off the nails of an elderly woman under her care at a hospital in Kyoto. Police said Saturday that the woman, who has been identified as Akemi Sato, 37, is accused of tearing out the finger and toenails of an 80-year-old inpatient suffering from senile dementia at Mori hospital where she worked.

According to Sankei Shimbun, Sato was arrested for a similar crime once before in January of 2006. She was imprisoned for three years and eight months after she was found to have injured six patients in 2004 by tearing out 49 of their finger and toenails. The patients were all immobile after strokes or other illnesses. The Kyoto district court said the woman had committed the cruel acts to relieve stress she was under from extra work forced on her by her supervisors.

After being released, Sato found employment at the Kyoto hospital in early August, where her job was to change bedsheets and adult diapers. On Aug 24, a coworker noticed blood on the foot of an elderly patient. An internal investigation was launched, at which point Sato confessed to tearing out the woman's nails.

According to the Sankei report, the hospital revealed that based on her resume, they believed Sato to be an experienced and capable nurse. The hospital said it did not know of her earlier conviction. However, after employing her, a hospital spokesperson said her work was nout up to standard and she was ordered to work under supervision at all times.

A spokesperson said she had been called in by her superiors for disciplining and retraining several times. Coworkers also recount that she seemed to have a problem with authority and didn't get on well with her superiors.

Police said that several other patients at the hospital were found to have had nails removed, but have not said if Sato was responsible.

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47 Comments
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I remember this witch! I can't believe she got back at her nefarious acts!

1 ( +1 / -0 )

I remember this witch!

Not me, of course...LOL

I can't believe she got back at her nefarious acts!

But yeah, I remember this piece of scum too. She did very horrible things back in 2006. Torturing senile patients for her own pleasure. What a sadistic animal...this woman is!

According to the Sankei report, the hospital revealed that based on her resume, they believed Sato to be an experienced and capable nurse. The hospital said it did not know of her earlier conviction.

Statements like these leaves you cold. It makes you wonder how many of these cunning criminals are working under our noses just because the agencies refuse to work harder and investigate in depth each one of these people before employing them. What an utter disgrace!!! Shame on them~

0 ( +2 / -2 )

What a grisly way of relieving stress.

Japan's bizarrely-interpreted privacy laws mean that employment background checks are often superficial at best; I'm not even sure Japanese employers are allowed to contact previous employers for verification, much less perform checks of any criminal history.

If that's the case, certain professions should be exempt from such restrictions--health care, teaching, and public safety positions first and foremost.

She should never have been allowed back in contact with patients.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Fired and banned from this job for life please.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Things like this will continue to happen until future employers have the ability to do systematic background checks for all applicants of any jobs.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I remember this story and if I am not mistaken it was all over the news: name and face. How she was hired after serving her initial sentence is mind-blowing! While she obviously bears responsibility for her actions, the shmuck(s) who hired her deserved to be punished, too!

5 ( +6 / -1 )

Obviously this woman has a severe mental disorder. The shame is that she was allowed to be responsible for vunerable people long after these past horrible incidents.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

How can she still find work as a nurse i wonder

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Shocking and scary too, but you know, even with checks in place the system is not infallible - in the UK we have one of the strictest systems in the world for checking people "working" with vulnerable members of society (I say "working" because it really is getting too much - my friend needed police clearance to help supervise a group of schoolchildren including her own daughter walking 5 minutes down the road to a local swimming pool for classes once a week) and yet monsters regularly slip through the net if they have no prior convictions.

It would at least be a start though, and may help shield people from those with previous convictions,like this nurse and the teacher recently who was re-hired in Kanagawa and attacked a child after a conviction 3 years previously.

It should be law that these people dont get to work with the vulnerable again, and the employing institutions who are punished - maybe that would make them more inclined to do some checking on these people.

If all this woman had to do was change bedpans and bedsheets and her work was STILL not up to scratch she doesnt sound like someone who should be working in the care services at all.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

At least in a visible, public environment abhorent acts such as these can be picked up and dealt with, hopefully (but not always) before it is too late. I shudder to think what goes on behind closed doors.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Man, I thought when the nurse ate the patient's Jello that was already mean enough. This nut bag took it to another level.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

In the advanced stages of dementia the patient needs 24 hour care and supervision. Abuse of a patient occurs both in the home minded by a family carer and in nursing homes Fortunately such cases are not prevailant, but when they do occur they make the headlines and rightly so. Sato is a cruel heartless devient who had allready served a 3 year sentence for a simular offence. so. who checked her suitability to be employed again in the same proffession? It is not always possible for a family member to care for a person inflicted by this terrible disease, in a nursing home 7 4 7 care can be catered for due to their facilities and staffing resouces.For the home carer if their are day care faccilities in the area they are invaluable in giving the carer some respite from their never ending duties.A few hours when the carer is able to get a couple of hours undisturbed sleep, go shopping and complete tasks that they would otherwise have no time for. Regular visits to a relative in a nursing home will be beneficial to the patient as well as being able to assetain whether or not the relative is being cared for in dignified and cherished manner.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Sato was arrested for a similar crime once before in January of 2006. She was imprisoned for three years and eight months after she was found to have injured six patients in 2004 by tearing out 49 of their finger and toenails

How the hell did she get a job again in the same field ? She's a real witch. Needs a very good B slapping session.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

What a crazy.. a little background checking on a person that is there to save your live next time please hospital. If I were the patient I would be suing the hospital for being stupid.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

According to the Sankei report, the hospital revealed that based on her resume, they believed Sato to be an experienced and capable nurse. The hospital said it did not know of her earlier conviction.

Didn't they check her criminal records at the time of job interview?? This is so lame.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

What a crazy.. a little background checking on a person that is there to save your live next time please hospital.

A little background checking? With just what agency is the employer going to do a background check with HERE in Japan?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

And it's not as if she was convicted of a crime totally unrelated to her profession. Why in the hell wouldn't they bother to check her hospital employment history ?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

@southsakai

Sato was arrested for a similar crime once before in January of 2006. She was imprisoned for three years and eight months after she was found to have injured six patients in 2004 by tearing out 49 of their finger and toenails How the hell did she get a job again in the same field ?

I guess someone wanted to leave early and skipped more than a few screening steps.

She's a real witch. Needs a very good B slapping session.

Sorry but real and authentic wise women/men (witches) would feel very insulted to be compared to this sick individual. She is nothing but a pure monster that got pleasure and arousal by torturing human beings incapable of defending themselves.

I really hope she burns in hell. If there is one.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

I'm still confused as to why was she able to find employment in the same field after committing the crimes ? No background checking or were these employers hiding under a rock?

3 ( +3 / -0 )

And it's not as if she was convicted of a crime totally unrelated to her profession. Why in the hell wouldn't they bother to check her hospital employment history ?

Hospitals, like many other companies here in Japan hire based upon the resume and interview of the potential employee. Unless there is reason that comes up in the interview or vetting process there are few if any businesses that will do background checks.

Side note: It is possible to have the background checks done, but it takes time and money to have them done, for example any Japanese person hired to work on base at the CDC's (Child Development Center) have to have a police background check done on them prior to working with the children. However depending upon the person the checks can take weeks if not longer.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

"According to Sankei Shimbun, Sato was arrested for a similar crime once before in January of 2006."

And she was allowed to keep her nursing license after her cruel acts and prison??? What kind of nation is this??

"According to the Sankei report, the hospital revealed that based on her resume, they believed Sato to be an experienced and capable nurse. The hospital said it did not know of her earlier conviction."

A lame excuse. Before a foreigner can come and work in Japan, and for a number of jobs here, I believe, you have to submit a document from police stating you have committed no crime in the past and have a clean record. Vocations such as this, where you must care for others, should most certainly require background checks, or if not checks then the people should be required to submit similar documents (stating they have a clean record). This is utterly ridiculous, and while I know it will never happen, the families of those with nails pulled should sue the hospital, and the woman should be locked up for twice the time she was last, at least.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Trains run on time, that's about all that seems to actually work in Japan. Who in their right mind would hire a sadistic nurse convicted of performing malicious acts, catch her she admits and place her under supervision? This is bizarre.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Something about the phrase "tearing out fingernails" reminds me of when I was a kid and my school teacher told that's what all Japanese did in WW2. This term still gives me the willies. "Removing" would be less emotional.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

I dont even know how you would physically do something like that. You cant just get hold of them and pull, can you? Wouldnt you have to cut them loose first? Im sorry to be so graphic, but I cant even understand how this could physically happen - easily and quickly, anyway.

The pain of having something like that done to you must be awful. Nothing short of torture. This woman needs to go to prison for a long time.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

And she was allowed to keep her nursing license after her cruel acts and prison??? What kind of nation is this??

One would have to see the Japanese version of the article to see what if any type of license she had or didn't have. The article says she was an "assistant nurse" which could mean a number of things here, one an orderly or helper.

Going out on a limb here I would guess she was just a "helper" and not licensed as a nurse. Sad as it may be these types of incidents happen more often than people would realize and are not all reported to the police and kept quiet and dealt with internally in hospitals and homes that take care of invalid patients.

I have seen incidents where orderly's or helper's bully patients that are unable to communicate and the manner in which some of them do it would boggle one's mind. Pinching, scratching, pulling hair, rough treatment, slapping across the face, and some other things as well. Most were fired upon investigation, some were transferred to other hospitals, but none were ever brought up on charges of mistreatment.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Amazing isnt it what goes on in this country, how does she get to work in the same job she was doing before beggars believe.

She needs to be hung up by her finger nails and left to blow about in the wind.

What a cold, cruel, mean, sadistic b!tch, I hope she gets whats coming to her 3 fold.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

This field suffers from labor shortage-this I understand. That's why they hired her without proper background check and nobody asked her about the gap years in her resume. What I can't understand is why Japanese government keep turning away elite foreign nurses, who actually want to work even in conditions unacceptable for many Japanese, thus creating job openings and giving perfect oportunity to local sadistic convicts like this Akemi.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

"be done by as you did" - She should have her nails removed the same way! She might think twice about doing it again to someone else!

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Tearing off nails, that's basically torture. The punishment should fit the crime,

0 ( +0 / -0 )

This is a bizarre story on so many levels.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

I agree with yabits.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

wtf

1 ( +1 / -0 )

remember this guys... whoever this Sato person is, needs some serious therapy. She can't cope with her stress level, so she is taking it out on patients... No, she shouldn't have been employeed by another hospital after the first encounter. But, she obviously needs help.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

The crime against helpless elders are happening in all over the world. You just do not hear as much .This should be treated as a crime against humanity..

Story from Sweden .

My friend works at a nursing home. She is a sweet young Japanese married to Swedish. Well, everyone loves her as she takes care of them well. Many of them are left with soiled diapers for days, I mean days. She takes time helping them to eat. Many cannot feed themselves and being left hungry.

Story from US

My friends's parents are always heavily sedated 24/7. This has been reported to authorities and this case is in a middle of inverstigation against this nursing home. Consumers have an access to govt evaluation record of nursing homes before sending our parents to nursing homes.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

If my daughter suggested i should go to one of them places i would have her guts for garters. They aint homes, they are prisons where old people go to die in misery.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I can feel the pain in my fingers and toes just reading about the case. I hope she never has another opportunity to hurt another human being.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

why nails???? this is disgusting... pathetic and sick

0 ( +0 / -0 )

She's obviously mentally ill and in need of treatment. Hanging her up by her own fingernails, or tearing them out, might give a moment of sick satisfaction to the revenge brigade, but it's ignoring the fact that she's clearly sick in the head.

And before anyone says she was sane enough to hold down a job and hide her horrible actions for so long...well, mentally sick people really don't all run around frothing at the mouth and shouting, really they don't....

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Yubaru: "Going out on a limb here I would guess she was just a "helper" and not licensed as a nurse."

No doubt that's the case. My question wasn't a case of asking for information or wanting to know, it was more bafflement than anything. Still, shouldn't 'helpers' have at least some kind of qualifications? Aside from candy-stripers in other nations (who are usually young ladies in their teens), I think they are needed elsewhere. Anyway, what's going to happen to this women, as a repeat offender? Give her 10 years -- either in prison or an asylum.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Maybe her grandfather was in the the Kempeitai in WWII and she's just carrying on a noble family tradition?

0 ( +1 / -1 )

To the person who immediately gave me a "thumbs down" for my comment above (perhaps an administrator?), it was obviously intended as pure sarcasm. I would have hoped that anyone with a modicum of sense would realise this and that I am as repulsed by this "carer's" vile actions and abuse of her position as any other normal human being.

Also, as any person with an interest in the Pacific war between 1941 and 1945 knows, the Japanese Kempeitai did indeed enjoy using the same sick techniques as Akemi Sato - hence the sarcastic comment.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Toe nail abuser strikes again.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Unit 731 is alive and well, just working the aged these days....just supervised this time.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Toe nail abuser strikes again.

Sounds like the title of a particularly repugnant manga... one that would probably sell well in Japan.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Dementia is a tough one to deal with. But, regardless of the stress from a patient, this sadistic woman needs to be removed from society. She's the type that is so selfish that they become infuriated at any inconvenience society puts forth. Sickening story.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

ohhh a sicko .. like in rest stop the movie.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

How long before she will be out again tearing off patient's nails in repeat-repeat-repeat offense in another hospital.

Meanwhile, diligent hard working people are unable to find a job for nonsensical reasons such as being a few years older than their will be boss, making a banal spelling mistake in their resume, or just because they can't learn from the many available guidelines on how to prepare for an interview and instead of being straight and faithful, lie and figure out the possible answer and keyword that the genius, infallible power abuser HR decided to be the proper to their irrelevant questions.

Now, sincerely, this woman should abandon her nursing ambitions and keep her nail tearing obsession as a hobby with paid volunteers, and could find a much more lucrative job as a counselor for job seekers (she obviously knows how to do it) or to write books about the incompetency of HRs.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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