crime

Police continue search for baby girl feared abducted from car in Oita

157 Comments

Oita prefectural police on Wednesday stepped up their search for a two-year-old girl who they believe was abducted from a car in a supermarket parking lot in Hijimachi, Oita Prefecture, on Tuesday afternoon. More than 130 police were mobilized to search the area on Wednesday, but so far, authorities have no clues as to what happened to the girl.

Fuji TV reported that the 34-year-old mother left her daughter in the child seat in back of her car while she went into the Marushoku Kawasaki supermarket shortly before 2 p.m. on Tuesday. The woman was quoted by police as saying she left the engine running and the air conditioner on. She was gone for about 5 minutes. When she returned to the car, her daughter was missing. She told police the car doors were not locked.

According to Fuji TV, the woman said her daughter was unable to walk unassisted due to a disability and would not have been able to open the car door alone. Police believe the girl was abducted.

The girl was wearing a pink T-shirt with a heart design and a red and black checked skirt.

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157 Comments
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I feel sorry yet Im thinking servers that mother right, this is what you get when you leave your kid in the car alone. sigh

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

disabled or not btw. NEVER leave your kid alone

2 ( +3 / -1 )

What is wrong with this woman, you don't leave your 2 yr old child alone in a car.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

left a 2 year old WITH a disability in the car. SHAME ON HER!

This makes me wonder...with Social Media booming in Japan if there is an "AMBER ALERT" type system in Japan to spread the word and picture of the girl taken.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

I won't discount the mum being involved in her disappearance just yet..another winner for the Darwin award. A) It is only about 3o degrees most days so was she trying to kill her kid with heat stroke? B) you never leave kids in cars unattended. C) was the girl REALLY abducted or is mum telling a porkie? Either way she should be arrested on child neglect charges in the meantime.

1 ( +4 / -3 )

I am praying that lovely little girl is found safe soon. No comment on the mother.

5 ( +6 / -1 )

We must also realise that life is much harder in Jpaan for teh disabled than in most Western countries and social help with daily life is almost non existent and when avalalble often expensive.

-1 ( +5 / -6 )

Leave your disabled daughter in an unlocked car during a very hot day in the middle of the afternoon?

Something smells very fishy to me. This story has a few more twists left in it.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

@steve@CPFC - are you excusing this incident???

-4 ( +1 / -5 )

Namabiru, they do have alert systems, on the highways, and through those loud speakers that are wired all over this country.

News said she did not lock the car.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

When I first came to live in Japan people still hid their disabled children but the situation has improved especially here in Kobe because following the 1995 earthquake there were many new disabled. You will see people in wheelchairs everyday of the week.

But I think this story is more about leaving a child in a car. There are mothers who have to go shopping with 2 kids, one in a pram and another in tow.

But we shouldn't be too hard on this mother because she will be suffering deep pain over this.

The real criminal is the one who took the child but we haven't heard the details of this story and could also turn out to be something completely different. I smell something so I'll reserve my judgements for another time.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

I disagree Steve. SOcial help is readily available, and often subsidized by the govt. One of my friends has a license to be a home helper, and it takes a lot of studying.

1 ( +4 / -3 )

zichi - there really are two criminals here. the MOTHER WHO LEFT HER KID IN A CAR locked or not and the one who took her.

-1 ( +4 / -5 )

JapanGal; Nah, MIL is registered disabled and the help offered is pathetic, If we didn't help she would be left to fend for herself and die no doubt. She ven has to rent her awalking aids and oxygen. My wife is a regosterd carer with the J governement , she passed that just to look after her mother. Possibly this woman was inder terribly stress or could be a negligent mum or partly both, We cannot judge properly without seeing all the facts,

-1 ( +4 / -5 )

Despite what some of you think, the mother is not guilty of any crime in this case, based on what information we have in the story. My sympathy is with her. She had a lapse in judgement and is probably horror-stricken right now , waiting for news.

3 ( +6 / -3 )

@sillygirl the mother isn't a criminal she made the wrong decision. I don't know the law on this point.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

There's a reason why shopping carts come in two forms (usually) -- those for people with toddlers and those without -- and the mother is 100% to blame here.

smartacus: "Despite what some of you think, the mother is not guilty of any crime in this case,"

Nor is it a crime to go in and play pachinko and leave your kid in the car (unless they die, which is sometimes the case), but the parent COULD be charged with negligence if something happens to the baby. I have ZERO sympathy for this woman or type of person, as they never seem to learn from the exact same type of incident until it happens to them.

I hope this baby is found safe and healthy and the mother can sigh and vow never to do it again, but until then she has to live with her decision that she "just stop in for a few things... it'll be okay".

"According to Fuji TV, the woman said her daughter was unable to walk unassisted due to a disability and would not have been able to open the car door alone."

I don't know too many 'babies' that can walk unassisted and open car doors for themselves; you open the door for even a small child, and as for them walking unassisted, you carry them to said shopping cart.

-3 ( +3 / -6 )

I never ever left my kids alone exactly for the reason that if something ever happened I could never forgive myself. I'd never be able to concentrate on shopping knowing my kids were alone in an unlocked car. In the heat. AND a child that is even more vulnerable due to a disability. I hope....hope....hope she is found safe and well.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Something's missing here. The news on TV was saying that the mother left the girl in the car when she went to go return the shopping cart (I assume this is after the shopping was done). They emphasized that it she was away for a couple minutes, at most. I don't remember hearing anything about her leaving the girl in the car WHILE she shopped.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

The sad thing is disabled or not this happens to much in this country. Parents leaving their kids unattended in cars while they go into shops etc. It is a disaster waiting to happen and in this case the poor child has to pay for the mothers stupidity, it may sound callous but l feel sorry for the child not the mother in this case. Maybe its time for there to be some changes (in law and policing) regarding this like in other countries.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

@smithinjapan

Well said.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

The TV this morning said the child was sleeping and the mother only popped into the shop for 5 minutes to grab a few things. I can understand WHY she did this, not that I'd ever advise it. If only she had locked the doors. Japan is comparatively safe but people are too trusting. Today i saw a scooter with a helmet on the seat and the keys in the ignition. I hope the child is found safe and sound very soon.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Hmm, the report I saw may have been mistaken (or my understanding of it). It does appear that she left the girl in the car while she shopped - they say it was for five minutes.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

There is too much missing info from this short post to be making rapid judgements.

The child was left in the car on a hot day. Probably, like many other Japanese she left the engine and ac running?

Was she ashamed of having a disabled child?

What is the intelligence level of the mother?

Did the mother expect to be only a very short time buying a couple of items?

Was the baby actually in the car or will we discover some other terrible story?

I do hope the child will be found alive and well.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

@Himawari

"The news on TV was saying that the mother left the girl in the car when she went to go return the shopping cart (I assume this is after the shopping was done)."

Like I said, we are jumping to conclusions based on our own emotions, without knowing the full facts?

1 ( +2 / -1 )

no jumping to conclusions - 2 year old in a car alone. these facts are not disputed.

-7 ( +0 / -7 )

@sillygirl

"2 year old in a car alone. these facts are not disputed"

and we know that because..........?

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Abducted or saved from death by broiling? Could be either. Everyone needs to stop assuming the worst. Either could be true.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

she said so

-6 ( +0 / -6 )

A kid left in the car while returning a cart is quite understandable. It usually takes less than a minute and I admit I do it sometimes after strapping my kids into their car seats.

I don't have enough details about how long this mother left her kid in the car so I won't comment about that. But I do hope to God they find this little girl OK.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

@sillygirl,

"she said so"

exactly only the mother said that, so the police must make a full investigation of whether it was true or not. Maybe there were cameras at the store? In the meantime, the police must do everything they can, to locate this baby and the post does not mention if the baby, has some special needs or medicine?

2 ( +2 / -0 )

One aspect of living in Japan which I really enjoy, and reminds me of my own childhood so many decades ago, is watching proud little children walking to their schools, which happens in my location. Mostly, they walk in groups for safety but sometimes I see one alone.

But if one of these young children were abducted would that turn their mothers into criminals?

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Fuji TV reported that the girl was left in a car outside a supermarket while her mother went shopping. Police said the woman returned to her car at around 2 p.m. to find her daughter girl was missing. It is believed the car doors were not locked.

MY GOD! First of all i hope and pray with all my heart that the police or whoever finds this little girl safe. I hope whoever abducted this little child just returns her to the Mother. It's a terrible situation and the mother must be feeling like hell right now.

But can i just say one thing. Is the mother stupid leaving her daughter so young and unattended like that while she goes shopping?

I know this is not America or some other country where children get kidnapped a lot by strangers but Japan is no exception. It does not happen at the scale of countries like America BUT IT DOES HAPPEN HERE.

Children get kidnapped all over the world. It's a reality! It is a fact! There are very evil people out there that prey on little children. If you are a parent reading this, PLEASE PLEASE for god sake always protect and lookout for your kids. If they are very young, never even leave them unattended in the public PLEASE"

1 ( +2 / -1 )

@ Zichi. We are talking about a disabled 2 year old. Not kids of school age, walking along in groups with school road safety staff positioned at various points along routes designated according to where you live. And actually, I didn't let the twins walk alone to school in first grade. The road outside my house is dangerous. Parents need to apply a wee bit of common sense to all situations and whatever age your kids are.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

I meant to say 'at whatever age they are'

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Samantha Zoe Aso,

I understand you, is there any difference between a 2-year baby or a 5-year school kid being abducted? We don't know if the baby was abducted, so far only the word of the mother, which for the time being, must be accepted.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Fuji TV reported that the girl was left in a car outside a supermarket while her mother went shopping. Police said the woman, who was only in the store for about five minutes,

So which is it? Returning a cart or shopping?

I don't know too many 'babies' that can walk unassisted and open car doors for themselves;

Not sure what point you want to make. I would say two years is a toddler, but people seem desperate these days to push stage of life titles down a notch. Actual babies may need to be given a new name to account for the shift. But yes, your average two year old can easily get out of a car if not disabled, and even with child locks engaged, if left alone unbelted long enough. In fact, some under one can get out if child locks are not engaged. As a father and a much older brother who had to babysit, I know.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Let's look at situations surrounding an abduction scenario. Unfortunately, there have been cases of children abducted , rather audaciously, from their own bedrooms at night with family sleeping nearby. That is a completely different scenario as opposed to .....& I am sure you get this...than parents or family leaving kids, especially young kids, unattended in cars, apartments, houses, shopping malls etc.

I am waiting to hear developments on this case and hopefully a happy outcome. Meanwhile, trying to compare a 2 year old left in a car to groups of school kids walking together doesn't validate any argument.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

@Zichi

The difference is, the parents that "go along with the system" of letting their kids walk to school with the other school children have little choice. It is set up by the school, and childrend are "expected" to be a part of that group. Can the parents refuse and drive/walk their child to school daily? Sure. But they would be subjecting their little one to taunting and ridicule by the other children, guaranteed. The kid would be ostracized from the group.

The woman in this article HAD a choice - and made one. The wrong one.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Leaving a kid in a car is a serious criminal offense in Australia, no matter what length of time and carries severe fines and the kids are removed from their parents until they can prove they are responsible enough to have them back. In Japan it is common place for people to leave kids in cars. I can't remember how many times I scolded my ex for doing the same thing. It is just such a stupid and irresponsible thing to do and incidents like this just prove why it is so stupid! I hope the little girl is OK, but this so-called 'parent' deserves to be punished and losing her kid is a good start.

-3 ( +2 / -5 )

zichiSep. 14, 2011 - 01:21PM JST

@Himawari

"The news on TV was saying that the mother left the girl in the car when she went to go return the shopping cart (I assume this is after the shopping was done)."

LOL. Where was the cart-return - at another supermarket?

-4 ( +0 / -4 )

The news I saw said that the girl was sleeping in the car, so she left the car running and grabbed a couple of things in the supermarket. She was gone for a couple minutes, max. The parking space was under a roof of some sort, so it was not another case of leaving a child in a hot car. She seemed to think that there were security cameras in place around the parking lot (there actually weren't). It's a bit shocking that something like this would happen in rural Japan in a matter of minutes, but still, none of these are good excuses. She should never have left the kid. End of story.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

According to the Oita Prefectural Police Department, the mother was gone for only 3 minutes (by analysis of the security cameras). The mother left the doors unlocked with engine and air-conditioning running. The mother told police she left the baby girl in the child seat (in the rear) since the girl was sleepiing. It's about 30 meters from the entrance of the store to the parking lot. The girl has a brother in 1st grade. Police force of 130 are searching for her. Hope she's alright.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Im sorry, I know she must be going through hell right now and I do feel for her, but you do NOT leave a child alone in an unlocked car with the engine running, EVER. If she knew she was only going to be 3 minutes, why not lock the car and go? If she has a dire emergency, then even on a hot day, 3 minutes will be fine.

I really hope the little one is found, and returned to her Mother, and the Mother learns from this experience and never does anything so stupid again, but quite honestly, its not as if this hasnt happened before, and even if she had never heard of previous cases, common sense dictates you dont leave your toddler vulnerable and available to anyone to snatch up off the street.

on the walking to school scenario - I understand how it fills some people with horror, it did me too, until I saw the set up. In my area the kids all walk together in groups, with an adult posted on every street corner with a flag. Cant speak for other areas but in mine it is well organised and as safe as it could ever be.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

I know, Nicky....gosh

I just know I couldn't live with myself if I did that.... self punishment seems right.

Can you imagine? a stranger with your baby girl?!! oh no!!!

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

So police, according to this article, say she was only in the shop for about five minutes. I'm assuming that comes from a report she gave them. Now a new report says she was in there for THREE minutes, which means someone has changed their story. Regardless, as I and others have said, you don't pop into a shop or out of sight of a toddler for even a minute.

Just yesterday afternoon I went into a convenience store to buy a couple of cans of beer for home and didn't bother to lock my bike because I didn't want to pull out my keys, unlock the lock then lock up the bike, then repeat to unlock the bike, then do so again five minutes later when I got home. I mean, I was only going into the convenience store for a MINUTE tops, so nothing could possibly go wrong, right?

Turns out that that was the case; my bike was not touched. BUT, that 'one minute' turned into near five as I got stuck unexpectedly behind an elderly lady paying her bills and asking a bunch of question while the other register was being taken up by a bunch of kids buying junk food. I'm not trying to akin a bike to a child, but the point is I knew I should have locked it but did not, and if the bike were gone I would have only myself to blame. Now, with a CHILD you should DEFINITELY be thinking a little more and not leaving them alone in the car. Waking the little girl up may have led to trouble in the store, but methinks her being taken is a whole lot worse.

The only other explanation besides utter thoughtlessness and stupidity for this woman is as one poster suggested above: that maybe the mother has something to do with the girl's abduction.

Anyway, as I also said before, I hope they find the little girl okay. I'm glad they left detailed info about what the girl was wearing... that may help in the short run.

-3 ( +2 / -5 )

Most Japanese news sources say 5 minutes.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

It's 3 minutes. (2歳不明 母親の買い物は3分間)) It can be verified on Yahoo Japan.

Moderator: The mainstream media say 5 minutes and that ends discussion on this point. In future, please do not go trawling through Japanese news sites and post contradictiory information here. It confuses readers.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

A former Japanese colleague was arrested in America for leaving his baby in the car for perhaps 3 minutes while carrying his wife into a hospital emergency room. He carried her in and said he had to get back to the car. They asked why and he said the baby's in the car. Instead of going out to get the baby for him, the Americans' first reaction was naturally force instead of finesse. They called the police and he was arrested. Of course, he should have carried the baby in and asked for help with his wife still in the car, but he was unnerved by his wife's condition. And he's Japanese, where a baby can be broiled in a car and no arrests made. Fortunately for him the charges were dropped. Fortunately for the baby, he vowed never to do it again.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

Can you imagine? a stranger with your baby girl?!! oh no!!!

No. i cant even bear to think of it and it is a wonder that parents of abducted children (and by that I include the ones in the custody disputes) dont go insane. I think it would drive me to the brink.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

the Americans' first reaction was naturally force instead of finesse. They called the police and he was arrested.

Calling the police is not force.

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

Japan definitely needs to include 'parenting' lessons within it's curriculum. The stories we read demonstrate the severe lack of basic parenting skills.

Most long terms foreign residents know (have witnessed many, many times) that what we regard as 'common sense' seems to be almost nonexistent. This will not end without more education and lessons about how to 'safely' raise, love and care for your child.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

You don't leave your kids in the car no matter what,

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Boy, a lot high and mighty determinations about what mothers should and should not do. I wonder, how many of you are mothers and spend near your entire day taking care of the kids among other chores?

If you are really keeping the kids in the car for just a couple minutes, its okay. You could drive yourself insane otherwise. I don't care if you agree with me on that or not. Just remember, if you are a father, your wife probably does it even if she won't admit it. The question is, what can you do? Because yelling at your wife probably won't work.

The fundamental problem here was that the door was unlocked. Why? Probably because the woman had only one key and wanted to keep the engine and A/C running. She had no extra key to lock the door with and the auto lock generally does not work with the engine running. So my advice is, if your wife's car is equipped with a key lock, get her two spare keys and pull apart keychain. You put the original key on one end of the key chain and all others on the other end. This way she can just pull the spare key off the ignition key with the engine running. The spare key left over is for her wallet in case of emergencies. And if you don't have a key yourself, get one.

Again, you can get all high and mighty while you leave your wife to the child rearing. But I suggest you get real instead and support her in what she is going to do even if you howl at the moon.

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

Calling the police is not force.

When you have other options, yes, it is. Its psychological force of a degree so far from anything that could be confused with finesse, warnerbro's use of the terms was quite apt.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

warnerbro

A former Japanese colleague was arrested in America for leaving his baby in the car for perhaps 3 minutes while carrying his wife into a hospital emergency room. He carried her in and said he had to get back to the car. They asked why and he said the baby's in the car. Instead of going out to get the baby for him, the Americans' first reaction was naturally force instead of finesse. They called the police and he was arrested. Of course, he should have carried the baby in and asked for help with his wife still in the car, but he was unnerved by his wife's condition. And he's Japanese, where a baby can be broiled in a car and no arrests made. Fortunately for him the charges were dropped. Fortunately for the baby, he vowed never to do it again

They probably called the police because he was more than likely in one of the US states where it is against the law to leave a child under 7yo unattended in a vehicle. Its a hard lesson to learn but with the numbers of kids that die or are kidnapped in cars while their parents are just running a quick errand (or going to play pachinko) then its a lesson unlikely to be forgotten. I think that it also should be looked at in more countries this one included

0 ( +1 / -1 )

CptCrunchSEP. 14, 2011 - 06:29PM JST Boy, a lot high and mighty determinations about what mothers should and should not do. I wonder, how many of you are mothers and spend near your entire day taking care of the kids among other chores?

If you are really keeping the kids in the car for just a couple minutes, its okay.

The freaks usually need less than a minute to do what they need to do. I'm sorry but it seems you can't handle it. If the kids are driving you nuts and you think it's fine to leave them unattended in a public place for "JUST A FEW MINUTES" ( door locked or unlocked, i don't really care )

Sorry I got nothing else to say here. Yes I have kids and I know what I'm talking about.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

I sincerely hope the little one is found safe and well very soon, in regards to the mother, there is never a good reason to leave a toddler alone anywhere at any time. The child has a disability, then even more supervision and attention is required for the childs wellbeing. Like I said I hope the little one is ok

0 ( +1 / -1 )

At one stage, I had 3 kids aged 4 and under. The only time I ever left them alone was to literally run out to the garbage area outside my house. Even then the children were in a 'safe' room. Am I the greatest parent in the world- a most definite 'No'! However, I have never taken a chance with their safety. Anything can in a split second. Life does that. Is the world full of evil people who would love to hurt my children? No. But, I'd like to think that I am doing everything possible I can to make sure we aren't that tragedy one in a million by using what common sense I do have to ensure their safety. You can call me 'high and mighty' if you like, in my book it's under 'trying to be the best parent you can'.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Fuji TV reported that the girl was left in a car outside a supermarket while her mother went shopping

Realise how dumb you are now do you lady?

Gotta feel for you but ask yourself one thing, and that is do you love your child?

If so why leave her ALONE in a parked car?

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

According to the Oita Prefectural Police Department, the mother was gone for only 3 minutes (by analysis of the security cameras).

Security cameras which don't cover car parking areas obviously. I can understand 3 or 5 minutes to visit a conbini, but a supermarket? I live in the sticks, even here that's a difficult feat. Hope the kid is ok

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

My wife's take: ' well she must be utterly stressed out taking care of a handicapped child and so felt that she needed 3 minute's rest on her own'

...note to myself: never buy a car.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

So easy to criticize with the power of 20/20 hindsight in your favor. How many kids are abducted from cars each year in Japan? Or otherwise get injured or die? Its always horrible when it happens, but not many. Yeah, you might have that miniscule base covered 100 percent, but I bet if I knew you, I could criticize your parenting for something necessarily damaging and more prevalent.

The Japanese have theirs a far safer society for children than what most of us can go home to. I say that counts for more than never leaving your child in the car for three minutes.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

There was a time was Japan was very safe, sadly that is changing. Still safer than most other countries I have lived. In the UK when I was a child, decades ago, mother left their babies in prams outside the food store. There would be a long line of them. Can't do that anymore, even if they were safe, the mothers would be arrested.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Cpt Crunch, not many kids are abducted, no, but I've only been here 10 years and I can remember enough similar stories to make me never even contemplate doing this. Unfortunately the Japanese themselves,

1) are under the impression that Japan is a safety country where things like don't happen. Well, they are right for some types of crime but not this one, I've heard more stories like this and the pachinko ones than I ever did in the UK,

2) still suffer from not being able to see the big picture and veering away from the way things have always been done. The Japanese conception of "common sense" would be that of course you leave the air-conditioning on when you leave your kid in the car otherwise they may feel a little bit uncomfortable, whereas the western conception of common sense would be that the kid can put up with 3 minutes of slightly raised temperature pretty friggin' easily and would rather that than be abducted.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Also CptCrunch I would have to dispute your assertion that Japan is a lot safer for kids than other countries quite vehemently. Superficially it may appear so (like many things here) but surely as a JT regular you have heard story after story after story of horrific abuse being handed out by Japanese parents. It might seem safe having kids walking to school but I'll bet there are just as many paedophiles out there wanting to get their hands on them, or as many potential rapists around, but they are just unable to do it in public because of sheer population density and social fabric, so do it in private instead.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

It was not a death by broiling people! If you had seen the news footage, this is an undercover carpark, and the mother had left the engine running to keep the air-conditioning of the car going. As for not locking the car, a mistake or maybe not. I live in Kyushu and I often leave the car running for aircon (when my dogs are in the car), with the doors unlocked....too trustworthy perhaps but a lot of us who live in the countryside do so! If she was returning the cart I don't see any problem with the Mum's actions whatsoever.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Some news says 3 minutes, others say 5 minutes?

In this very short time, someone opened the door, got the child out of the baby seat, and fled the scene on foot or in another car?

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Unfortunately, Mother to child homicides are far more common than abductions from a parking lot in this country. Odds are, this is a made up story to cover a heinous crime .

5 ( +5 / -0 )

The news said at 6 pm that the mother went to shop for 5 minutes while she left her child in the car. Why would you leave a child (potentially handicapped? I am not aware of the details) in the car for any length of time to shop? I am from America and sometimes these turn out to be accidental or malicious type deaths that the parent tries to hide. I hope that I am wrong and this young child is found alive and healthy.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

its typical japanese thing. leave the kids in the car, very often even with the engine and the air conditioner on and shopping...and shopping...and shopping. some of them they even leave kids after locked in the car in hot summer, returning back kids are dead. never leave kid in the car! not even 1 minute! i feel sorry for the mother. i hope baby girl can find back soon...and the mother learn from the lesson

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

It would be awful if it turns out to be the mother, but it's within the realm of possibility. When I first learned about this story, the fact that the daughter was disabled stuck out.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Readers, there is no evidence at all linking the mother to the girl's disappearance. Please do not slander the woman.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

When will these people learn? And the Stupidity Award goes to....

0 ( +0 / -0 )

the story was just on the news.

after the mother went back to the car, she ran to the closest shop and ask the attendant if the parking area has surveillence cameras. then when the attendant said no, she said 'oh no, what can i do?!'...

that is a really bizarre thing to ask first. surely you would scream her name, call the police, scream her name and ask the attendant if she has seen a little girl and then scream her name again...

0 ( +0 / -0 )

You can call me 'high and mighty' if you like, in my book it's under 'trying to be the best parent you can'.

Agree with this. Also agree with Capn Crunch that it is unfair to criticise unless walking a mile in someon elses shoes. In my case, I think having 3 children under 5 including one that was temporarily disabled (always tired and unable to walk very far for nearly a year because of a serious bowel condition at age 5 and you wouldnt believe the people who pointed and stared and laughed at a big child in a pushchair) allows me to proffer an opinion.

And my opinion is still that you dont leave a child alone in a car, especially an unlocked one, at all.

Like Samantha im not a perfect parent, and I am sure you can come to my place any time and find examples of things I am doing wrong. But willingly leave them exposed to potential kidnap/abuse - no.

Whether she was there 3 minutes or 5 minutes or even 1 minute is a moot point for me. If it was long enough for someone to abduct her, it was too long.

However - I heard last night about the surveillance cameras too - its hard to predict how an individual should react in that situation, but when I lost my little girl (or to be more specific when my Mother in Law lost her) for about 10 minutes in the zoo when she was 3 I was panic-stricken - I ran round in circles screaming her name over and over, begging anyone who looked at me to search for her, gasping out a description to them as I ran, with visions running through my head of her being carried away calling for me. We found her safe and sound but those were the longest 10 minutes of my life.

So I have to say I also find the reaction of the Mother logical but a little strange.

Sadly tokyokawasaki - I wonder if parenting classes would make any difference. I cant believe that these people really dont understand the risks they are taking. Perhaps classes in pachinko addiction, or some hard facts on how unsafe Japan and the world really is becoming might help?

1 ( +1 / -0 )

It must have been a very brazen crime. The kidnapper couldn't have know the woman would arrive at the supermarket. He or she must have been there, saw the woman park her car, go over to the car and remove the child without her screaming, all within 5 minutes. Then what happened? It's all very mysterious.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Just want to add: as a parent I honestly feel, in public at least, that Japan IS safer than other countries I have been to with my kids, and especially my homecountry, the UK. Cant say about in private of course, but this is my general feeling as a Mum. HOWEVER - although I feel it is saf-er, I dont feel it is 100% safe, and I get frustrated that people still seem to think it is some kind of utopia where nothing bad ever happens and you can safely leave a 2 year old alone.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

You don't a young child without supervision even for a minute. Period. The mother bears some responsibility and could be charged for child neglect.

As a father of a toddler, I never leave my child in the car alone (or anywhere else for instance). Anything could happen while you're out of sight (medical condition, accident or stolen car, kidnapping, etc...). I don't have any stats here but I would guess that the child abduction rate in Japan is not statistically different from many other developed countries: this is a rare occurrence, but you nevertheless don't want to give any opportunities to kidnappers.

On a side note, if you leave your car unattended without locking it and it is stolen, you are not covered by your insurance (because they consider it is your fault).

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Piglet - The mother bears some responsibility and could be charged for child neglect.

Not in this country.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Something is strange though. I know that if a stranger tried to pick up one of my kids they would play havoc and make so much noise it would be impossible for someone not to notice something in a busy supermarket car park. I know the article states the was asleep, but if she was in a car seat she would have woken up when being removed. I think the flops should be checking acquaintances of this kid and family and dare I say it, the mental stability of the mother.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

They had quiet a report about this case on TV this morning. They showed the car-park(holds like 4 cars) typical for a small town Marusho store.

There was also a copy of the car and they showed how easy it is to open the slide-door from the inside, don't take any strength and the door will slide open automatic.

what they also showed that the child sat on the far side from the entrance to the shop, so the car would have blocked the view of her getting out or someone taking her out. Car had the standard "Baby on Board" sticker in rear-window.

I agree if she was abducted than it was by someone that knew her and the mother.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Oh God. Please let her be found safe and sound.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

The child is still not found , every hour that has passed gives more grevious dispair, no excuse for the mothers initial disasterous decision to leave her child unattended, but I feel for her now, she must be beyond frantic. Please, please let the little one be found safe.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I know it's a sad thought, but was the child really in the car? Could this be some sick cover story?

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

I know it's a sad thought, but was the child really in the car? Could this be some sick cover story?

Yes, it is a sad thought. Its also an entirely reasonable one and one I think going through almost everyones minds right now. I am trying not to think it because if this mother is entirely innocent then that would just be the worst thing to compound her pain. Innocent till proven guilty and all the rest of it. But.....this story just seems a bit....I dont know.....unlucky?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Been going through my mind too. Though I hate to think it. Every hour that passes the chances of finding her safe and well decreases drastically. ( Gleaned from TV) Relatives must be crazy with worry by now. I'd be in a strait jacket by now if it was my child. That or ripping buildings down searching for her. Don't know why but this particular case has got to me.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Nicky Washida we should all put our judgements on hold until we discover the truth behind this story, which is basically what I've been stating. I can understand the immediate emotional reactions by so many other mothers. Hopefully, the police will do their job, and find the child, or at least discover what really happened to her?

0 ( +1 / -1 )

zichi - I know we should and I agree with you. Trying not to let my imagination get the better of me ;) ! I sincerely hope the police get to the bottom of this.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

More details on TV now, they even showed footage of the parked car, etc seen from the shop entrance, etc. Shop layout and location of cameras, etc. 20m from entrance to car, parked at the end of a row of 5 parking slots. Looks like there were also extra parking spaces(not belonging to the shop around that area.

Still doubt it was a stranger that took a chance to abduct ANY child no-matter-what. Gut-feelings tells me there is more to this story.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Oikawa, stories are not statistics. You are probably statistically more likely to get struck by lighting than have your kid abducted in this country, but I don't see you making sure all your shoe soles are one inch thick rubber to be on the safe side. You can let the media panic you into a heart attack if you want, but I advise against it. My very own home is causing me more concern for the safety of my child than my wife leaving the boy sleeping in his child seat for a few minutes on occaision. But even though I thought she had a spare key to lock the door, I found she didn't. Gaaaah! I gave her mine. I know there will be times when she is juggling too much stuff and she is a bit of clutz. I don't want her to drop my boy or bash his head either. A few minutes alone in the car seems the lesser of a lot of possible evils... at least as long as the doors are locked.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

Sorry CptCrunch, a helpless child should NEVER be left alone in a car and unattended - regardless of the conditions (air conditioning/heating on, doors locked, etc). No excuses. It's done primarily out of laziness.

I don't need the "power of 20/20 hindsight" in my favor - I have 20/20 foresight. I don't do it, and neither does my wife.

Anyone can criticize another on their parenting, true. But some brainless and/or lazy parenting flubs are more obvious than others. Leaving a child unattended in a car is one at the TOP of the list.

You are a parent. It is your responsibility to take care and protect that child. You're going shopping and think it will be difficult to carry both the groceries AND the child? Tough. Find a way. Don't put your helpless child in harms way for a bag of food. I mean, which one is more important, really?

There seems to be an epidemic here in Japan that playing with a bunch of shiny metal balls in a loud, crowded, smokey room is more important and more enjoyable than spending time with one's kids.

I guess at least the mother wasn't THERE when the kid disappeared.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

was trying to find any coverage of this on the Japanese newspaper websites...very very little indeed.The 150 or so police did quite a lot of canvassing and turned up with zero information despite interviewing over 600 people.Nobody had seen any suspicious individual..and I know all kids are different and I don't know her handicap but my 2 year old would have screamed blue murder if someone she didn't know picked her up.The fact that the news has wound down so quickly leads me to think the police have a few ideas. the report I read now said that people had complained of suspicious types in the past but that the supermarket had no camera in the parking lot and no security guard.They have found no trace of her clothing and no phone call to her house has been received.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

@shanabelle

I live in Kyushu and I often leave the car running for aircon (when my dogs are in the car), with the doors unlocked....

Interesting perspective. I hope no-one ever takes your dogs.

It is hard to comment in that we live in the city, not the countryside, and things are different there I know.

But tell me - are you a parent? And if so, would you leave your toddler unattended in an unlocked car?

1 ( +1 / -0 )

CptCrunchSep. 14, 2011 - 09:23PM JST

So easy to criticize with the power of 20/20 hindsight in your favor. How many kids are abducted from cars each year in Japan? Or otherwise get injured or die? Its always horrible when it happens, but not many. Yeah, you might have that miniscule base covered 100 percent, but I bet if I knew you, I could criticize your parenting for something necessarily damaging and more prevalent.

The Japanese have theirs a far safer society for children than what most of us can go home to. I say that counts for more than never leaving your child in the car for three minutes.

Um, yeah. Dogs? I think you are posting on the wrong board. We are talking about a CHILD here, not some mangy mutts.

Priorities people.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Nicky WashidaSep. 15, 2011 - 02:08PM JST @shanabelle I live in Kyushu and I often leave the car running for aircon (when my dogs are in the car), with the doors unlocked.... Interesting perspective. I hope no-one ever takes your dogs. It is hard to comment in that we live in the city, not the countryside, and things are different there I know. But tell me - are you a parent? And if so, would you leave your toddler unattended in an unlocked car

Damn copy and paste is messed up. Disregard my previous post.

Um, yeah. Dogs? I think you are posting on the wrong board. We are talking about a CHILD here, not some mangy mutts.

Priorities people.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

a helpless child should NEVER be left alone in a car and unattended

You stick to your slogans. I will stick to reality. Not saying anything is safe. There are dangers in everything people do.

Leaving a child unattended in a car is one at the TOP of the list.

So you say, without specifying a time period as I have. I am more worried about when my baby takes naps and my wife has to go pee. He could suffocate.

There seems to be an epidemic here in Japan that playing with a bunch of shiny metal balls

There is a difference in leaving your child in a car for a few minutes while you take care of business and leaving the child for hours while you play a game. Your slogan does not seem to account for that.

And while it happens, is it an epidemic? Please. Get real.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

@NetNinja

Japanese women make for some of the worst mothers in the world

Sweeping, racist generalisations aside, on what, exactly, do you base that little gem of insight?

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

I am more worried about when my baby takes naps and my wife has to go pee. He could suffocate.

Why are you worried that your baby will suffocate during his nap? Is his bed safe? If so, why are you worrying? If not, why cant you fix it so it is safe?

A very tiny number of babies will sadly die through cot death or other factors in their sleep. When all reasonable precautions have been taken, this is a tragedy but not a preventable accident.

When you leave a child in an unlocked car reasonable precautions have NOT been taken, and a highly preventable accident could occur. There is a big difference.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

This is Japan. We all know that the baby will be returned to the mother when found.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

When my kids were little, I never, ever left my kids in the car alone, not even for a second! Put them on the stroller and go. Where I went,they went. I don't understand why anyone would defend the mom in this. Doesn't matter if people think Japan is safe or not, you just don't leave your kid in a car alone period.!

I do wonder why didn't she just carry her child with her into the store? Maybe she thought it was too much trouble to tote her around or get the stroller out to put her in it.

Sorry, but she should of known better.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Thank you, Nicky. Crunch the Crunch.

@Froot Loop

"There are dangers in everything people do". Talk about slogans. Blahbitty blah, blah blah blah blah.

If people want to put themselves in danger, all the power to them. It crosses a line when what "people do" includes putting OTHER, especially helpless children, in danger.

You want slogans?

Taking a pee is not a choice, and neither is taking a nap. Shopping and leaving a child alone, are.

It's an epidemic because there is no cure, and it is increasingly happening. It SEEMS to be perfectly legal here. Sad, but true.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

So many conclusions about this story when we still don't know the full facts?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

zichiSep. 15, 2011 - 03:45PM JST

So many conclusions about this story when we still don't know the full facts?

Well, at this point - a full 24 hours after she disappeared - the BEST case scenario is, someone did take her, and will end up returning her unharmed.

The worst case is, the poor little girl has met her demise either by the hand of a stranger, or the mother (or another family member and ma is just covering). God forbid.

Either way, both could have been prevented, I'm sure.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Nicky, a child can choke on a blanket or suffocate on bedding. Even their own clothes can become a danger, especially as mine rolls around everywhere. Can't quite put him naked in a wooden box you know. Anything softer could give him a place to stuff his airholes and block them. Besides he would scream himself into a stroke. He demands freedom, and as his crib was useless as such, I broke it up and used the pieces to block doors.

No precautions in a car? For three minutes? There is: setting the child locks. Keeping the A/C on. Locking the door. Having the child secured in a child seat. Child is surrounded by steel, which is, well, steel.

Oh the heck with it. You guys have already made up your minds even before I said anything and no doubt prefer the easy status quo than actually having to think. I gave my advice. Do with it what you want.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

Kevin Lee Brooke, at the moment we only the word of the mother that the child was even in the car? no fingerprints found, no footmarks, nothing to show that the child was abducted. I think we should wait until further details are released before we jump to any emotional conclusions.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Wow - lot's of people commented about hot day - but she left the engine running with the AC ON. Very quick to point fingers around here eh? Although...leaving a two year old in a car with the engine running is an accident waiting to happen. Would this be considered a violation of the unlawful leaving a child in the car unattended law?

As for kids - we don't let our kids out of our sight OR reach. If we're in the grocery store and we're looking at something - our hand is ON the child - just for safety.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

There is: setting the child locks. Keeping the A/C on. Locking the door. Having the child secured in a child seat.

A/C needs engine running, which means key in the ignition (usually)..... so how do you lock the doors?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Sorry if it upsets you Capn Crunch but I just find it really interesting that you think putting a child down to sleep in its own bed is risky behaviour, but leaving it alone in a car is perfectly ok.

Oh the heck with it. You guys have already made up your minds even before I said anything and no doubt prefer the easy status quo than actually having to think. I gave my advice. Do with it what you want.

Made up our minds that leaving a child in an unlocked car is a bad thing to do? Er, yeah, and no apologies for that. How is that a status quo? How is that not thinking? Dont know what advice it was that you actually gave, but if it involved it being ok to leave a child alone in a vehicle, lets just agree to disagree. You feel free take whatever risks you want, and Ill pass on it if thats alright with you and continue doing what i have been doing, making sure they are as safe as I can reasonably make them.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

It took me nearly 10 months each to bring them into this world..(last one born 2 weeks ago!)..I had the worse pain of my life, at times so excruciating I wanted to die... each of my 4 children ripped me apart like you can't imagine if you have never given birth in your life...

there is NO way on earth I would leave my children alone, out of my sight and reach...NEVER!!!!

If I want to buy something or do something....my husband can help with that or anyone else for that matter.

Children are NOT dogs that you can just leave inside your car and go about your business.

This woman made hell of a mistake and I hope she pays for it! FOOL!!

7 ( +9 / -2 )

like thumbing down someone would help prove your point~~ hahahaahahahaha

1 ( +3 / -2 )

Would you leave 50 million dollars in an unlocked car? Would you leave even a thousand dollars in a car for 5 minutes? No way! A child is precious and worth more than anything so why would anyone leave a CHILD alone?!

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Dont know what advice it was that you actually gave

Just defeats everything you said. Does your mouse have a scroll function?

Here is another way to look at it: A child alone in a locked parked car for three minutes in a car seat is safer than the same child being driven for three minutes on the highway. But this not the panic of the times, so feel free to discount it.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

Another example of heiwa boke sticking it's head out here in Japan. I can not imagine how any parent could leave a child unattended in a vehicle for any amount of time. The mother here for whatever the reason was just down right lazy.

I have 3 kids, and I know what an annoyance at times it can be, BUT that's what part of parenting is all about. I hate to say this but as much as this mother never deserved to have her child abducted, she asked for it by her actions. I will also lay a bet down that this wasn't the first time she did it either.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Once I have strapped my children into proper car seats and I am driving carefully, I cant prevent some idiot wiping us out. I can however prevent someone swiping them from an unlocked car by not leaving them there in the first place.

But this not the panic of the times, so feel free to discount it.

You are advocating leaving a child alone in a car! Of course I am going to discount everything you say. Sorry - I dont think I am panicking, I dont think I am being unreasonable and I certainly dont think I should start doing it because you think otherwise.

You do whatever you think is best for your children. Ill do the same with mine. ok?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

No precautions in a car? For three minutes? There is: setting the child locks. Keeping the A/C on. Locking the door. Having the child secured in a child seat. Child is surrounded by steel, which is, well, steel.

Any parent that leaves their child unattended for any amount of time in a vehicle, a/c running, doors, locked or unlocked, is guilty of negligence and should have their children taken away from them.

A/C needs engine running, which means key in the ignition (usually)..... so how do you lock the doors?

@Gobshite, it's actually very easy. I personally have two keys to my car, and there are times I will turn on the car, turn on the ac to cool it off and lock the doors and leave the car for sometimes ten to fifteen minutes.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

@ CptCrunch. Can you please explain something? You commented on the potential dangers that incorrect bedding can pose for babies. Why then would you think for a moment that leaving a small child unattended in a public place, in an unlocked vehicle is even remotely okay? We are talking about a two year old. A disabled two year old.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Something says to me that the mother was overwhelmed with dealing with a handicapped child and the child was not actually abducted. It's hard to take care of children and Japan seems to still stigmatize the handicapped. Perhaps the mother couldn't handle it. I truly hope that the news tomorrow proves me wrong.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Me too, Sakurala

0 ( +0 / -0 )

apparently, the toddler has a muscle problem in her legs but can walk a bit and play etc. the reason this was mentioned at all, is that she probably can't run miles away from the car.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

CaptCrunch, you're going back and forth. I agree with you if you say locking the doors and running in to a conbini where you can see outside is ok, but from the info we have here where this woman couldn't see her kid and left the car unlocked, in this case it is not something I'd do. I'm not going to take the slightest risk for one second that someone would abduct my child in that case as it is obviously impossible to see, if I was in a conbini however I'm pretty confident I'd be able to see someone try to break in to my locked car and get out there before they managed to break the window and hot wire the car. Equally I don't care what the odds of people getting hit by lightning are because stats like that are false stats as things are not all equal. I'm not an idiot who is going to play golf during a thunderstorm, just like the odds of me dying in a typhoon are nil because I don't live in the southwest part of Japan and I'm not a moron who goes out to check the river level in the dark. It's about logic and common sense, not about stats.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

You commented on the potential dangers that incorrect bedding can pose for babies.

Any bedding Samatha.

Why then would you think for a moment that leaving a small child unattended in a public place, in an unlocked vehicle is even remotely okay?

I clearly indicated the door should be locked. Above I gave instructions on how to get your wife to lock the door if she won't take the baby or child out of the car 100 percent of the time.

I am totally in favor of taking the kid or kids out of the car 100 percent of the time. What bothers me utter condemnation of anyone who fails to do so. That will not fly if one of the partners disagrees, and I know my wife does. That first post offered advice on how to make sure she at least locks the door. But if I found she left him for 10 minutes while shopping rather than just 3 minutes, we might have a fight. God, I hope you get it this time.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

CaptCrunch, you're going back and forth.

No. You are not following.

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

A/C needs engine running, which means key in the ignition (usually)..... so how do you lock the doors?

Did it ever occur to you that one of my other posts in this thread might answer that question Gobshite?

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

Serious lapse in judgment by the mother and she's probably absolutely sick with herself and with the situation. Having said this, wouldn't be interesting if the person who abducted this little girl did it for the precise reason that its stupid to leave a two year old in a car during the summer.

We see so many stories (especially on JT) where parents leave their kids in the car in extremely hot weather and the kid winds up dying from heat stroke or dehydration. Maybe a person saw this two year old kid in the car crying for her mom, and felt that something needed to be done. They don't know that the mother is going to be back in 5 minutes or 5 hours, so they take justice into their own hands. Of course, abducting her is not the answer...I would have called the police myself, but then again, how reliable are the j-police? In many stories, we read about how police show up to a scene of a crime in progress several minutes to several hours later.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

What bothers me utter condemnation of anyone who fails to do so. That will not fly if one of the partners disagrees, and I know my wife does. That first post offered advice on how to make sure she at least locks the door. But if I found she left him for 10 minutes while shopping rather than just 3 minutes, we might have a fight. God, I hope you get it this time.

Easy solution if you are with your wife and she disagrees, stay in the car with the child(ren).

What bothers me utter condemnation of anyone who fails to do so.

Feel free to be bothered by me, because as a parent with three semi-grown children I know about the inconvenience, trouble and annoyance it can be to take kids out of a car when only stopping for a few to 10 minutes or longer.

I condemn any parents that leave their children alone, particularly that age, in a car. Go ahead and burn me on the cross for my opinion.

A responsible, loving, and caring parent would never do it.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

The police have now changed the investigation into a 'public appeal',expanding the scope across the prefecture.They interviewed 660 people and recorded number plates but have 'no substantial leads' The supermarket had 4 cameras inside the building and I am sure that at least one would have to be facing the doors to the carpark.Even though there were no cameras in the carpark the police can check surveillance/red light camera footage at nearby intersections around that time frame (they caught a serial arsonist in Osaka by doing exactly that). They can also check for fingerprints on the car door and windows..unless the crime was planned I doubt anyone other than motorcyclists or taxi drivers or some women would be wearing gloves.Even though pedophiles are opportunists, someone hanging around a local country shopping centre in this heat would be noticed by someone...I really can't imagine someone just waiting to snatch a kid out of a car in broad daylight in 30 degree heat in a local area where people know each other.As anyone with a 2 year old knows, they get very grumpy when woken from their 'hirune' and I think we can rule out someone walking away with Kotone as she had walking difficulties and would have made a fair bit of noise.That would suggest someone pulling up alongside and putting on gloves and within five minutes deciding to abduct the little girl. It would be interesting to know if the car windows were tinted, otherwise she would have had to have been crying to alert someone of her presence.or someone knew she was in the car...All those things seem to point to a person well-known to her as being the abductor. If she was in the car to begin with, and if cadaver dogs and forensics don't find other DNA evidence that suggests a different type of crime. The Japanese police do have rather a lot of means at their disposal to catch the abductor, if they choose to use them or even need to use them. I hope little Kotone is found safe.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

If I ever found out that my husband had ever left any of our kids unattended in a car in a public place, he would near death. I can categorically state that he wouldn't ever do that. We are a team. We discussed being parents and our roles as parents well before we had kids. I would be disgusted at him if he was the kind of person to blatantly disregard basic safety precautions concerning kids.

Back to bedding...and this is starting to get tedious....You never know, with young children especially, what can befall them in a split second. So, as a responsible parent charged with ensuring the safety of a vulnerable being, you use common sense and sometimes a little forward thinking to try to limit the obvious dangers. Leaving an infant with duvet covers or too many toys in a crib is dangerous. It's a no no. Leaving kids unattended in public places or basically anywhere is another no no. You are scraping the barrel with the lightening comparison.

I would also like to think that after the huge loss of life during the quake and tsunami would have at least made folk cherish their loved ones even more. We are still having aftershocks. Another reason why kids shouldn't be left alone.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Where is the father of the child in all this? If I was her husband, I would be outraged! I already expressed my thoughts on the mother.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Easy solution if you are with your wife and she disagrees, stay in the car with the child(ren).

Oh dear God. Must you ignore all previous posts? None of this about both parents being present!

when only stopping for a few to 10 minutes or longer.

And there you just ignored the last set of posts.

Its not your opinions that bother me. Its your condemnations, demands of perfection, and failure to read the thread.

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

I read all the posts and responded as such. Also it doesnt matter if it's one parent or two. A parents responsibility is to their children and leaving them unattended is negligent and irresponsible no matter how much to try to justify the actions.

I do condemn any parent that leaves their child unattended in a situation such as the one in the OP. It's criminal negligence.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

I think certain folk, myself included are just going to have to agree to disagree.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

demands of perfection,

Im not seeing where anyone is demanding perfection here? All Im seeing is a bunch of people saying leaving a child alone in a car unsupervised is a potentially dangerous thing to do.

As time goes on I am finding this case more and more weird. In 3 minutes someone pulled up or approached on foot, abducted a little girl, and got away scot free from a supermarket car park in broad daylight without anyone seeing a thing? No fingerprints on the car? No tracing of the cars that went in and out of the car park during that time? I am getting a stronger and stronger feeling there is much more to this story.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Why wait TWO FULL DAYS to release the girls photo and a description of what she was wearing to the public? Is it police pride? Did the parents object? I don't get it..

Its obvious that the most critical time to be able to catch and follow leads are very early in the investigation and this can only be done by appealing to the public who may have seen her in the early stages of her disappearance....Every second counts and while having the police walk around in long grass searching the area using long sticks is all well and good it has its limits, especially seeing as she may have been taken by vehicle and on the road immediately after her abduction.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I am thinking the mother objected to bring it to the press...maybe she didn't want to be judged by the neighbours or have the public know that her daughter was mildly handicapped. Both of which are silly reasons. I am sure the police would have been using the photo while canvassing though and it is too bad they didn't get the photo out there earlier. However, this story is smelling fishier by the minute...

0 ( +0 / -0 )

What day was it? Before 2? its like the hotest time of the day. Some one probably took the child out out of safety. hopefully the baby is at some koban somewhere eating ice cream or some hospital or something. But the mother should be charged with neglect.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

No. You are not following.

What a response! Well thought out. You've got me.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

You've had it Crunchie. Outnumbered. Apparently there are just more responsible parents (or future parents) on this board than irresponsible ones.

Save the children! (cuz I know how much you love slogans)

:)

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Nicky WashidaSep. 16, 2011 - 10:57AM JST

As time goes on I am finding this case more and more weird. In 3 minutes someone pulled up or approached on foot, abducted a little girl, and got away scot free from a supermarket car park in broad daylight without anyone seeing a thing? No fingerprints on the car? No tracing of the cars that went in and out of the car park during that time? I am getting a stronger and stronger feeling there is much more to this story.

If the child was truly abducted, I DO wonder about the mother's timeline of events. Could be she left the the kid a lot longer than she led on because she knew it was wrong and that she might be persecuted as such. Not saying that's what happened, just agreeing that it does seem odd and particularly difficult to pull off such a caper in such a short time.

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You've had it Crunchie. Outnumbered.

Ad populum fallacy.

Apparently there are just more responsible parents (or future parents) on this board than irresponsible ones.

Another logical fallacy. A disagreement over the severity of this one issue hardly makes anyone responsible or irresponsible. However the abject failure to read carefully on the part of some would do a good job of indicating responsibility. We have no idea what these people do with their kids while we are not looking. In fact, I will bet several have made little exceptions despite their claims of perfection on this one issue.

I stick by my suggestion to give the wife an extra key so she can lock the door with the engine running, even if told her you don't want her to do that. It would have prevented this abduction and could prevent the abduction of your child. Your choice.

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oikawaSep. 15, 2011 - 10:40PM JST

I agree with you if you say locking the doors and running in to a conbini where you can see outside is ok,

I can agree with this. Car parked in front of the door. Eyes on the car the entire time. Etc. Responsibility. Precautions. What conceivably could happen in that case?

But never when the car would be too far away to take action if needed or out of sight. Conceivably, too many wrong things could happen; and have.

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@dolphingirl

I leave my mother in the car, and she sure is precious and worth more than anything to me. It is meaningless comparing money and a human being, am I wrong?

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CptCrunchSep. 16, 2011 - 03:25PM JST

You've had it Crunchie. Outnumbered.

Ad populum fallacy.

Apparently there are just more responsible parents (or future parents) on this board than irresponsible ones.

Another logical fallacy. A disagreement over the severity of this one issue hardly makes anyone responsible or irresponsible. However the abject failure to read carefully on the part of some would do a good job of indicating responsibility. We have no idea what these people do with their kids while we are not looking. In fact, I will bet several have made little exceptions despite their claims of perfection on this one issue. Remember, even cruel child abusers are far more likely to scream how well they treat their kids than to show you the cigarette burns.

I stick by my suggestion to give the wife an extra key so she can lock the door with the engine running, even if told her you don't want her to do that. It would have prevented this abduction and could prevent the abduction of your child. Your choice. Beating your spouse into submission on this point however is not.

LOL.

Well, lucky I married smart. So no beatings are necessary in my house. She knows what's right and what's wrong.

Nonetheless, I don't have anger issues anyway.

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@ Kevin Lee Brooke

How do know this was an abduction? Her disappearance is still unsolved.

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I 'm asking CptCrunch the question.

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@CrazyJoe

"Police continue search for baby girl feared abducted from car in Oita"

I'm going on the article, Mr. Wizzard. And I never SAID that it is a 100% Slam-dunk abduction. To help you along, here are some quotes from my posts:

"If the child was truly abducted, I DO wonder about the mother's timeline of events"

"Well, at this point - a full 24 hours after she disappeared - the BEST case scenario is, someone did take her, and will end up returning her unharmed.

The worst case is, the poor little girl has met her demise either by the hand of a stranger, or the mother (or another family member and ma is just covering). God forbid."

Now, where again did you get confused?

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Thanks Kevin. I was a bit confused.

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Well the timeline has changed. The mother went shopping and then went home again before going to the supermarket. She apparently went to a toyshop. Bought a bento at the supermarket.

What is perhaps a little odd is that the mum and dad haven't ( that I know of) been shown on TV or done an appeal. Despite the police handing out flyers.

The mum will have to prove Kotone was in the car. The Japanese police photograph and document EVERYTHING. They will access feed from convenience store cameras and the lot.

I wouldn't be surprised if someone is being interrogated right now. When a story leaves the news here it often means the police have a case.

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This is the car..looks like it is parked right outside of an exit...sliding back door, possibly slightly tinted windows,do you think? http://sankei.jp.msn.com/images/news/110914/crm11091408330009-p2.jpg looks like the police are doing thorough forensics.So far the only family members to comment have been the grandparents..not even an appeal from the parents at a time when a heartfelt appeal on TV would be most beneficial?

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This story seems really suspicious. It pains me to say it, but Ithink this mother is hiding something. If someone entered the car to kidnap the child, wouldn't there be fingerprints on the door handle? And how would an abductor know that this car in particular was unlocked? You can't see that until you get right up next to the door.

Whoever the culprit is, I just hope the little girl is alive and unhurt.

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Thon, put yourself in the shoes of someone who wants to abduct a child for a minute. Scouting parking lots is not so hard but very time consuming. You just sit in your car. So many cars have signs indicating there is a child in the car. Such a car drives by, you watch. Mother gets out of car. She does not put a key in the lock. There is no flash of llights to indicate she locked it. And, there is no child in her arms. Its just a matter of patience.

Gloves or a handkerchief would mean no fingerprints as they test that door. And if there are prints? Good luck finding whose they are. Most people are not in the system.

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Maybe its time for there to be some changes (in law and policing) regarding this like in other countries.

Until this country is no longer run by 70+ year old beauracrats, nothing is going to change...laws, law enforcement and especially the mentality of its society.

S

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There are no fingerprints, footprints or witnesses. I just hope the un sub is not the mother.

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@CrazyJoe

No prob. ;)

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153 comments; this is a very interesting situation and I hope Japan Today continues to give it a lot of attention. I pray this child is found (unharmed) and returned to her mother. Please Japan Today - run a picture in your paper and let all of Japan know what this youngster looks like, so everybody can be on the lookout for this child.

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Never leave your kid sin the car alone. Generally while in a car the window should be at least partial open in case of a CO leak. Modern cars have usually have a vent that is always open but it is better to be self instead of dead. Never leave your kids in a running car...anything can happen. Lock your doors when you leave your card.

There is one question that is not answered in the article...other than the mother's statement, did anyone see the girl at all in the car? ie FLA Casey case.

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One angle to the story is maybe there was no child in the first place and that the mother is just making an alibi for the loss of her child which happened sometime back. No offense meant just a thought.

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