crime

Child killer loses appeal over life sentence

21 Comments

The Supreme Court this week dismissed the appeal of a man who was sentenced to life for the murder of a toddler in Kumamoto.

In March 2011, Yoshihiro Yamaguchi, then a 20-year-old university student, was found guilty of abducting three-year-old Koko Shimizu who was with her family shopping at a supermarket. Yamaguchi was charged with strangling her to death in a restroom at the store, before putting her body into his rucksack and dumping it in a nearby canal.

Yamaguchi was identified after surveillance camera footage showed him going into the toilet after the little girl went in and showed him coming out with a bulky rucksack.

Yamaguchi was tried twice under Japan's lay judge system, found guilty both times and sentenced to life in prison. On Wednesday, Yamaguchi's final appeal was rejected by the Supreme Court, TBS reported.

As a result, the verdict will not be overturned and it is expected he will spend the rest of his life in prison.

Yamaguchi's lawyer had appealed the sentence on the grounds that his client was mentally incompetent.

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21 Comments
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I wish this story provided info on the grounds for appeal. Protesting innocence? Technicailty? Agrees guilty but feels sentence was too harsh?

If he is definitely guilty and admits such, then a life sentence is too lenient. Should be death penalty for child murders like this.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Wish they gave death sentences out for child killers even if it's for one murder.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Good riddance!

0 ( +1 / -1 )

He should be executed. What a hide this maggot has in trying to reduce his sentence. If Japan maintains it's death penalty it should be used first and foremost in the most heinous of crimes such as this. Rest in Peace to the little innocent Angel.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

Since he is not appealing the guilty verdict, there is probably enough evidence he did it. In that case, I hope they make him work really hard for that bowl of rice for the rest of his life. He can be mentally incompetent in his cell. By the way, how many mentally incompetents are university students? If he can pass a test and go to a normal uni, then he can be responsible for his actions.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

If he can pass a test and go to a normal uni, then he can be responsible for his actions.

That's like telling a cancer patient that his heart rate is normal, so he must be healthy.

People without knowledge or experience of mental problems really shouldn't come on here parading their ignorance.

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Lucabrasi, good for you for having experience of mental problems. An individual who can function more or less "normally" in society will be generally declared mentally competent. Of course there are many exceptions and circumstances.

A legal precedent that illustrates the point in my previous poster (only if you accept that American courts have experience, of course):

"In 1989, Kenneth Curtis of Stratford, Connecticut was initially found mentally incompetent to stand trial following the murder of his estranged girlfriend. But years later, as he had attended college and received good grades, this ruling was reversed, and he was ordered to stand trial."

0 ( +0 / -0 )

@timeon

Fair point, but entirely different. Nobody's arguing about this guy's fitness to stand trial. We're talking about his mental state in March 2011 when he committed the murder.

I'd suggest that anyone who kills a random 3-year-old child is demonstrably insane

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Incredible that he has chuzpah to appeal. This maggot should be thankful that he is allowed to live at all.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

One detail that was in the Japanese press and makes this crime even more horrible: this monster first raped the girl, then strangled her in the toilet. His explanation was that the crime was not intentional, "my hands accidentally slipped into her throat". I hope that the guards and other inmates will make sure tha every day he will spend in prison will be painful like hell.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

life without parole is better or just death, saving us our taxes. He was never sorry, he is still pretending to be crazy to escape the consequences of his actions. Kidnapping, rape, murder, abandoning of corpse...and he wanted to be free.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

It still amazes me Japanese parents don't look out for their children much. People really need to be aware there are a hell of a lot of weirdos running around unsupervised here.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

I hope that the guards and other inmates will make sure tha every day he will spend in prison will be painful like hell.

Speaking of psychopathic tendencies....

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I work with 3 year olds often and there is no way I'd let a 3 year old(if they were my kid) go into a public restroom unsupervised. There is no way the mother was even near the door if a man was able to walk into a women's restroom without notice. It would seem that parents would learn by this incident to watch their kids at all times but I still see little kids running around stores and malls without any parent in sight.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Yamaguchi’s lawyer had appealed the sentence on the grounds that his client was mentally incompetent.

And so are you Yamaguchi. If I were the prosecutor, I would have asked for the death penalty just for the sheer brutal nature of the crime.

I'd suggest that anyone who kills a random 3-year-old child is demonstrably insane

Totally agree.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

@oikawa you don't know children.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Life means life in this case. The most fitting punishment for him. Hanging is the easy way out. The perp is now 22 years old so he may well spend 60 or more years locked up and he deserves all 21,900 days in prison (or more if he lives longer). That is a long time to suffer and reflect on what he did. Hanging only takes seconds or minutes, whereas prison takes days, months, years, and decades.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

What drives people to murder other people ??!!??!?!?!. This is something i will never understand!!!!]

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YAY!

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

@yourock thank you for your thoughtful, intelligent and considered response

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I am glad of this ..he deserves immediate execution and his lawyers should have been ashamed for representing such a terrible person. He is a monster and deserves to die.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

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