crime

Mother arrested for strangling 7-year-old daughter, 5-year-old son

39 Comments

A 39-year-old woman has been arrested on suspicion of killing her 7-year-old daughter and her 5-year-old son at their home in Atsugi, Kanagawa Prefecture.

According to police, the woman turned up at a police station at 3:40 a.m. With her was her 11-year-son who had choke marks on his neck, but was not badly injured. Fuji TV quoted police as saying that the woman told them she had strangled her daughter and youngest son and that she had wanted to die.

Police went to the house and found the unconscious bodies of Yumea Ochiai, 7, and her 5-year-old brother Haruma in a second-floor bedroom. They were taken to hospital where they were pronounced dead two hours later.

The woman lived in the house with her husband, their three children and her husband's parents. The woman's 47-year-old husband was out at the time, while her in-laws were asleep in other rooms and heard nothing, police said.

Meanwhile, a child welfare center in Atsugi said the woman has consulted them at the end of last year, saying she was feeling the strain of rearing three children. The center had asked the school where the 11-year-old and 7-year-old attended to be on the lookout for any signs of abuse.

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39 Comments
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Can't wait for the pity crowd to jump on and try to figure out how to blame it on post-partum depression seven years after the fact.

THis woman was a psycho. May she rot in hell.

-8 ( +19 / -27 )

Hey Smith, don't be so fast to pass judgment....She obviously had mental problems, especially having to live with the in-laws, as well as the fact that most typical Japanese husbands doesn't help out with raising their children. She tried to seek help but to no avail. She probably held on as long as she could and exploded. Unfortunately, it's a lose:lose situation all around.

6 ( +16 / -10 )

Here we go again.

0 ( +6 / -6 )

Can't wait for the pity crowd to jump on and try to figure out how to blame it on post-partum depression seven years after the fact.

She may very well have been depressed and unable to differentiate between right and wrong. We don't know the circumstances. Are you trying to claim that she definitely wasn't depressed, and definitely did know the difference between right and wrong, and if so, then please let us know how you are privy to this information when it isn't known by anyone else at the moment?

-2 ( +10 / -12 )

Gotta feel for that 11 year old. No getting over something like that. Poor kid.

15 ( +15 / -0 )

"A 39-year-old woman has been arrested on suspicion of killing her 7-year-old daughter and her 5-year-old son at their home in Atsugi, Kanagawa prefecture."

"Atsugi, Kanagawa prefecture." WOW that's where the US Navy base is located.

-20 ( +5 / -25 )

She had probably become a house-locked carer and was also caring for her in-laws as well. No doubt her husband was just another childish burden as well. It is a tough situation that would cause nearly anybody to snap. Sadly, she took the lives of her kids before her own, which seems to be a common scenario. The kids didn't deserve to die from her lack of coping. I'm also a little curious if the husband was aware she had been to family services family services didn't seem to do very much about it. Telling the schools to watch out for signs of abuse is not exactly what you would call proactive.

9 ( +12 / -3 )

So sad for everyone involved, especially the surviving son. Having your brother and sister murdered by your own mother? I don´t even want to start imagining how messed up that is.

9 ( +9 / -0 )

"A 39-year-old woman has been arrested on suspicion of killing her 7-year-old daughter and her 5-year-old son at their home in Atsugi, Kanagawa prefecture.....

Meanwhile, a child welfare center in Atsugi said the woman has consulted them at the end of last year, saying she was feeling the strain of rearing three children. The center had asked the school where the 11-year-old and 7-year-old attended to be on the lookout for any signs of abuse."

Well, she said that she wanted to die but before that she strangled her 7-year-old daughter & 5-year-old son! This had happened so many times & it's really sad! No matter what happened it was, people are not gonna forgive a woman like this who killed their 2 innocent young children!

2 ( +3 / -1 )

How sad. Two precious little lives, in a country that can ill-afford to lose the few children that it has. I have no words.

7 ( +7 / -0 )

smithinjapanFEB. 13, 2016 - 04:08PM JST Can't wait for the pity crowd to jump on and try to figure out how to blame it on post-partum depression seven years after the fact.

THis woman was a psycho. May she rot in hell.

Wow, bad day at work smith?

Japan has a problem with infanticide but haven't seen any news of a public outcry or government action. Where is Gaiyatsu when you need it huh?

-7 ( +3 / -10 )

Not making any accusations here but just wondering where the husband was at 3 a.m. on Saturday morning?

5 ( +9 / -4 )

The dark and unfathomable side of humanity. Sad story.

1 ( +4 / -3 )

"Atsugi, Kanagawa prefecture." WOW that's where the US Navy base is located.

You must mean the joint U.S. Naval Air Station and JMSF Air Base.

3 ( +6 / -3 )

smith

May she rot in hell.

I generally appreciate your comments, but this one is really out of line. By all reasonable measures of human nature, she is already suffering hell. Almost nobody kills their kids because they enjoy it.

I understand the outrage and sadness when this kind of thing happens to kids. It's terrible, and hellishly sad. The focus needs to be on how to prevent this happening again, not on what should happen to the mother.

10 ( +13 / -3 )

I do not blame her , many Japanese husbands do not care at all , probably all the financial burden was on the mother with out any help from husband ...

-2 ( +3 / -5 )

My gut tells me the same as what disillusioned mentioned, this woman may have actually been caring for 6 children, 3 little ones & 3 adult ones just THINK about what that would involve......

Just contemplating that would make me run for the hills!!

8 ( +8 / -0 )

Man, what is going on in Kanagawa-ken lately ? There has been a disproportionate amount of incidents.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

The center had asked the school where the 11-year-old and 7-year-old attended to be on the lookout for any signs of abuse.

eh? how about being pro-active about it and help her before any abuse happens.

Family and child support in this country is terrible, i bet she felt helpless and went there looking for help and they shrugged it off...

no wonder some mothers feel that way sometimes and resort to doing terrible things.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Meanwhile, a child welfare center in Atsugi said the woman has consulted them at the end of last year, saying she was feeling the strain of rearing three children.

Wait!! The women at least knew she had a problem and it appears she needed help as she consulted the child welfare center. This is typical for any government agency they will listen but do nothing until after the problem and then probably nothing! I agree with some of the posters here it appears she was overwhelmed with being the in laws plus family care taker, now that's a big job. Why try to take the kids life and not the in laws life in the house says something about that scenario.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

"Not making any accusations here but just wondering WHERE THE HUSBAND WAS at 3 a.m. on Saturday morning?"

Well allow me to make the accusations. He is FORTY-SEVEN years old and staying out all night.

He is not a real father, he is not a real husband, and he is definitely not a real man!!

But he is Japanese...

1 ( +4 / -3 )

Lots of cynical speculations on the husband's whereabout, but he could very well be on a business trip.

Being a sandwich generation is tough. Raising kids, taking care of elderly, the financial burden that comes with those, plus potential emerging health issues and mid life crisis, all hitting you at the same time. No wonder some people can't take it, and want out.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

sakanafish: "Hey Smith, don't be so fast to pass judgment....She obviously had mental problems, especially having to live with the in-laws,"

Don't care. Doesn't excuse murder. You'll agree that it won't, but then you'll turn around and find ways to justify what she did.

"...as well as the fact that most typical Japanese husbands doesn't help out with raising their children."

So, you ask me not to pass judgement, but have already passed judgement on the husband. That's part of the problem. If it was, say, a boyfriend of a single-mom (another thing we always read about hear when it's murder), or the husband, would you honestly be so quick to run to their defence?

igloo buyer: "Wow, bad day at work smith?"

Nope. I would hope anyone who murders their child or children rots in hell, any time, good or bad day (today was not bad). Wouldn't you?

Strangler land: "She may very well have been depressed and unable to differentiate between right and wrong."

Don't care. Lots of people suffer depression and don't murder their kids -- IF she was suffering from that (I have no proof she wasn't, you have no proof she was). I'm sorry but unlike you I don't defend such people or their actions.

plastic monkey: "By all reasonable measures of human nature, she is already suffering hell. Almost nobody kills their kids because they enjoy it."

And almost nobody who suffers the depression of hell kills their children. If you guys want to argue that society is not pulling its weight and there is not enough help, I'm 100% in agreement, but murdering your kids when others find other outlets... sorry, but no pity from me on these special occasions.

"The focus needs to be on how to prevent this happening again, not on what should happen to the mother."

Yes, and no. I agree that this needs to be stopped from happening again, and again, and again, and again (but it's not), but that does not mean we constantly excuse those who have done it; and indeed the pity party so many seem to throw before the blood has settled could very well be part of the reason why it keeps happening. Nothing is done to/for the women after, so why on earth would anyone not think it's an easy way out or to get help?

Honestly, if history holds true to course here the woman, with her other child 'needing his mother' despite her trying to murder him, too, will get off with a relative slap on the wrist so that she can go home and do it again and this time finish the boy off, too. The system needs to change, absolutely, but so does the idea that these women who murder people need to be pitied until it is. I would think the same way for anyone who did this, same as I would think a man who went on a gun rampage and killed his family in the US or somewhere because he was stressed out about life.

I stand behind what I said: lock her up, throw away the key, and put a picture of her kids on the inside of the cell for her to remember each and every single day. I'll keep feeling sorry for the murdered child instead of watering down the fact that she was murdered. I hope to god whatever happens she never has unsupervised access to the boy again, and even then only if its what HE wants.

0 ( +6 / -6 )

I don't know the family nor living in Kanagawa, but don't some of you consider the husband working in night shift? As for the woman, being Japanese, she has a lot of option to ease her depression. She could even work for 3 or 4 hrs to ease her depression and at the same time earn extra money for herself. Or if she's burdened living with the in laws, they could live separately. So sad for the young lives that perished. RIP!

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

Smith, I'm with you on this one. Killing your children because you can't cope with their upbringing is deplorable. And I don't believe suffering depression makes you unable to differentiate between right or wrong. Bare in mind she obviously knew what she did was wrong as she handed herself in to the Police. This would resonate with anyone who has children of their own. RIP little ones.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

How sad! It's too bad this woman could not get help earlier! I am sure there is plenty of help in Japan if one looks for it.

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

The focus needs to be on how to prevent this happening again, not on what should happen to the mother

It is not like this is a daily occurrence and no prevention is going to keep every single Japanese woman in check. All killers should be treated the same and no life is worth more than another..

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

maybe the husband works night shift

1 ( +2 / -1 )

I can't imagine a state of mind that would motivate a mother to strangle the life out of her children. In hindsight opportunities appear to have been missed. smithinjapan yearning for retribution is a natural reaction, after all strangulation was intentional and took time. Apologies for my frankness .

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

"strangulation was intentional and took time"

Yes. The MURDERER was looking at her child at the time. Staring at the confused look and the bulging eyes, deaf to the gargled noises as the child tries to ask... Why, mommy, why?

Then she moves on to kill the next child...

And then the next one... she couldn't quite finish off only because the boy was ELEVEN YEARS OLD and too strong!!

"the pity party so many seem to throw... could very well be part of the reason why it keeps happening"

Nothing further to add!!

0 ( +3 / -3 )

Agreed with Smithjapan rational and medical diagnosis of situation. One important point to shout: Japanese citizens, stand and blame fiercely the behaviour of this woman. Explain to everyone it is also everyone's issue to lose kids. It is just against the basics of mankind, same as other murderers of innocent people. Absence/very limited human true relationships explains most gratuitous murders in Japan. Of that I am sure.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

don't know the family nor living in Kanagawa, but don't some of you consider the husband working in night shift? As for the woman, being Japanese, she has a lot of option to ease her depression. She could even work for 3 or 4 hrs to ease her depression and at the same time earn extra money for herself. Or if she's burdened living with the in laws, they could live separately. So sad for the young lives that perished. RIP!

This is an extremely naive point of view. Being Japanese she has a lot of option to relieve her depression? Are you kidding?! Most places in this country basically tell you to "ganbatte" - like the family center she did actually consult for example. She could work? Doing what and when? She has 3 children and in laws to support. One was still only 5 so still at kindergarten. And most in laws dont support their daughter in laws working. They expect to be looked after themselves. That's her "job". Live separately? She may well have tried to ask for that, but societal pressure is still strong. He was probably the Chounan so it was just expected. Finally, yes, he could have been working a shift Saturday night. He could just as easily been out partying, relieving his work stress for the week. Here's a crazy thought - they could have gone out together and had the in laws babysit! Nope - never gonna happen.

Not supporting her at all. I have 3 kids myself and raising them in Japan whilst married to a Japanese man was hell at times, even without the in laws living with us which could quite possibly have pushed me over the edge. But I would have killed myself before anyone else. But these naive assumptions that Japanese women have it so easy are often way off base. Some do. A lot don't. and many many many of them are depressed.

3 ( +6 / -3 )

The sad incident this time is graphically telling that children can't choose their parents. RIP for two kids.

Hope the 11-year-son will somehow recover from his psychic shock in due course.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Child welfare need to look into all cases more thoroughly. This woman had been to a child welfare centre in the past to seek help. But it seems nothing was done to investigate properly. Family court and child welfare from personal experience are pretty useless here. Despite several meetings with them over two years and obvious signs of strange behavior they have done nothing and I genuinely fear what my estranged wife might one day do to our children.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

@ Smith - I'm with you on this one too.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Family court and child welfare from personal experience are pretty useless here. Despite several meetings with them over two years and obvious signs of strange behavior

Totally agree. I was sent a questionnaire assessing my state of mind after my second was born years ago. I filled it in ticking all the boxes for feeling suicidcal and wanting to harm myself or others. I wasnt in that state of mind at all, but I wanted to see if I would get any kind of reaction (this issue was in the news even back then). Answer: I got nothing at all. No contact whatsoever. Someone was able to tick their box and claim job done. That's all.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Strangler land: "She may very well have been depressed and unable to differentiate between right and wrong."

Don't care. Lots of people suffer depression and don't murder their kids -- IF she was suffering from that (I have no proof she wasn't, you have no proof she was). I'm sorry but unlike you I don't defend such people or their actions.

Once again you show your lack of reading comprehension, as I have no defended this woman, nor any others, nor have I defended their actions.

You just make yourself look foolish when you make accusations that are not backed up by reality. Try reading what you are commenting on a little closer.

-5 ( +0 / -5 )

I often wonder why in cases like these, neighbors don't call the police due to screaming children at all hours of the day and or night? In my country, we call the police for everything and anything.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

"In my country, we call the police for everything and anything"

And also in England...

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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