Police in Minami-Alps, Yamanashi Prefecture, have arrested a 42-year-old man on suspicion of sexually assaulting an 80-year-old woman at the nursing home where he works as a caregiver.
The woman, Keiko Higuchi, died of injuries believed to have been inflicted on her during the assault which occurred in the bathroom of her room at the Wataboshi nursing home between 10 p.m. and 11:30 p.m. on Aug 5, Kyodo News reported. Higuchi shared a room with her husband, who is in his 70s. He was asleep when the incident occurred, police said.
According to police, the suspect, Kazuki Tanzaki, is accused of taking Higuchi, who suffered from dementia and had difficulty walking, into the bathroom where he choked her and then sexually assaulted her. Higuchi was unresponsive the next morning and Tanzaki asked the nursing home director to call 119. Higuchi was taken to hospital where she was declared dead. An autopsy revealed asphyxiation as the cause of death. She also suffered a broken bone in her throat.
Tanzaki was the only caregiver on duty that night, police said. Police said he has admitted to assaulting the woman, but has denied intent to kill. He was quoted by police as saying that recently he had become stressed out over his caregiving duties and that it is was troublesome getting the Higuchis to do anything without an argument.© Japan Today