The Kobe District Court has sentenced a 30-year-old man to 18 years in prison for killing a 16-year-old boy in 2010.
Lawyers for the defendant, who cannot be named because he was a minor at the time the crime was committed, had entered a partial plea of guilty, saying there was no intent to kill, Kyodo News reported. They said they will appeal the sentence handed down on Friday.
Prosecutors indicted the man last December after a four-month psychiatric evaluation determined that he was mentally fit to stand trial. He was convicted of killing Shota Tsutsumi, then a student at Kobe Koryo Gakuen High School, on Oct 4, 2010.
He was living near the crime scene at the time but moved to Komaki, Aichi Prefecture, after the crime.
Prosecutors said he stabbed Tsutsumi several times in the neck and other body parts with a cooking knife at around 10:45 p.m. Just before he was killed, Tsutsumi and his girlfriend were sitting on the sidewalk beside a vending machine, when a man sitting on the other side of the road approached the pair. Tsutsumi told the girl to run.
She returned and found Tsutsumi lying on the road at a crossing 70 meters away. Tsutsumi had sustained an 8-cm cut to his neck and died from loss of blood.
Six days later, the murder weapon was retrieved in a ditch roughly 200 meters southwest from the crime scene in Kita Ward. DNA tests revealed that blood found on the knife was that of the victim. The knife had been bought at a nearby supermarket by the suspect.
There was a 3 million yen reward for anyone who could provide information leading to the arrest of the killer, though police have not said if anyone ever collected it.© Japan Today