crime

Woman gets suspended sentence for dumping her baby's body

42 Comments

A 35-year-old woman received a suspended sentence at the Oita District Court on Tuesday for dumping the body of her 2-year-old daughter in the woods.

The court sentenced Yuko Emoto to two years, suspended for three years, TBS reported. Emoto was arrested in February for abandoning the body of her daughter, Kotone, which was found in the woods near her house in Hijimachi, Oita Prefecture, last September.

The case received a lot of publicity when Emoto claimed that Kotone had been abducted from a parked car outside a supermarket. Emoto told police she had left her daughter in the child seat in back of her car while she went into the Marushoku Kawasaki supermarket. She said she had been gone about five minutes, and when she returned to the car, her daughter was missing.

Police launched a massive search for the girl, but to no avail.

Emoto was arrested after she confessed that the abduction story had been a lie and that she had actually buried the girl’s body in the mountains. She told investigators that she had found her daughter dead under a blanket on the morning of Sept 13. Police were unable to determine the cause of death because the body had decomposed by the time it was found in February.

Prosecutors said Emoto's actions were rash and inconsiderate, and that she had had caused a lot of problems for a lot of people, TBS reported. Counsel for the defense, appealing for a suspended sentence, responded that Emoto did not deny the charges, but she has faced up to what she has done and has sincerely apologized for her actions.

In handing down the ruling, Presiding Judge Hidenaga Manabe concurred with the defense, saying that while Emoto was guilty of a criminal act in abandoning the body of her daughter, there is no evidence to show she killed the child and that she has shown she deeply regrets what she did, TBS reported.

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42 Comments
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Presiding Judge Hidenaga Manabe concurred with the defense, saying that while Emoto was guilty of a criminal act in abandoning the body of her daughter, there is no evidence to show she killed the child and that she has shown she deeply regrets what she did But she should be sterilized just to be on the safe side.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

she has shown she deeply regrets what she did,

This is what I hate, she is sorry she was caught! Why saying and acting sorry after the fact gets you off in Japan is unbelievable!

4 ( +7 / -3 )

Like a sponge cake, each layer justifies the incompetence of the next..ie police incompetence topped with a dash of judicial incompetence and a general non interest by the public. A systematic denial of failure by investigators and prosecution, because she "admitted" Case closed baby dead, no more questions?

6 ( +9 / -3 )

Let's look at the facts:

Woman claims that daughter had been abducted from a parked car outside a supermarket.

Police launch a massive hunt for the 2-year old, but to no avail.

Months later, investigators find remains of the 2-year old in the mountains.

Woman admits abduction story was a lie, and that she had actually buried her in the mountains, and claims to have found daughter already dead under a blanket.

hmmm...... call me crazy but she probably killed her own daughter and tried to cover her tracks... but there's no evidence to support that theory, and she IS acting remorseful, so let's go easy on her. Brilliant.

5 ( +8 / -3 )

i am speechless, i am sorry, suspended sentence that is it? unbelievable

4 ( +6 / -2 )

Cricky - absolutely. The baby is dead, the incompetent authorities can`t prove she killed it either directly or by negligence and she gets a suspension ? Oh yeah I forgot ,,she sincerely apologized...so its all good then... Unbelievable.

1 ( +4 / -3 )

Emoto was arrested after she confessed that the abduction story had been a lie and that she had actually buried the girl’s body in the mountains. She told investigators that she had found her daughter dead under a blanket on the morning of Sept 13

Why didn't she report it to the police immediately? Instead she buried her daughter in the mountain. Sounds like the prosecutors could not present a proof of her intention to kill in this case. Too bad..

The court sentenced Yuko Emoto to two years, suspended for three years

Too light entence to me for what she has done. What's wrong with the Japanese judicial system? I just do not get it.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Did the judge forget she made up a story that her child was abducted? How much man power, time and tax papers money was spent on a search for someone that never existed and for a child that was already dead. This woman is a pathological lier / crazy and walked all over the judge with her bows, crying and fakeness. Evil woman.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Disgusting, pathetic and meaningless sentence.

Bury the body of her child for a slap on the wrist with a wet bus ticket ??

No proof she killed her kid but heaps of suspicion she did.

4 ( +6 / -2 )

Presiding Judge Hidenaga Manabe is an absolute disgrace and needs to be thrown out of the justice system on his ear along with the rest of his croney mates who have no clue about reality.

1 ( +4 / -3 )

The poorv woman obviously has mental health issues. She has suffered enough from losing her child and there was no proof the child did not die of natural causes. The whole story is not here, maybe she was so distraught that thechild died she made up this story, maybe she did kill her child.

The legal system is in place to convict due to the facts not on specualtion and emotional considerations.The sentence given is very fair.

-7 ( +3 / -10 )

There is no proof that she killed the child. Maybe she did, maybe she didn't, but if there is no forensic evidence to show how or where the child died, so you can't hand down an unsafe verdict.

The knee-jerk reactions of people are understandable, but without knowing the details you are sentencing her to death when she could be innocent.

2 ( +6 / -4 )

The knee-jerk reactions of people are understandable, but without knowing the details you are sentencing her to death when she could be innocent.

She wouldn't have got the DP. The thing people are angry about is that she got a suspended sentence. When the death of a child is involved, despite there being no real evidence that she killed the child, a suspended sentence is appalling.

The legal system is in place to convict due to the facts not on specualtion and emotional considerations.

She abandoned the body and wasted police time. Even if she didn't kill the child, she should have some jail time just for those 2 offences.

maybe she was so distraught that thechild died she made up this story

You find your child dead, so you take them out to the woods and bury the body, then lie to police?

3 ( +6 / -3 )

Jeez, talk about a failure of justice. Basically they should have just said don't do it again same result.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

You can't prove a negative that can't be proven.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Japanese justice, people. She admitted to her guilt, apologized, and the Dougesa was enough to let her off Scott-free! Absolutely sickening. Now all she has to do is not have another kid for three years and she's home free.

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

And she's not even going to have to pay back the tax money she cost by lying about the kid being missing -- you and I get to pay FOR her.

2 ( +5 / -3 )

Yeah, and the facts are that she is a big liar! That proves she is probably lying about the death under the blanket, no? If the prosecutors were a bit harsher on her she might actually have told the truth! Or better investigators that find a wrong link in her stories - we all have watched suspense movies but not the judge I guess.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Proves YET AGAIN that the system in Japan does not care about the welfare of children. All Japanese should feel ashamed of this heartless system and DEMAND change...

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

OK, no proof she is a killer, so no jail. The job of justice is not easy. Look at the Etan case in New York. They convicted a guy, and 10 yrs later, they get another one... But, but, but that's an established fact that this lady is nuts, probably dangerously nuts, so why doesn't she get some stint in some hospital ?

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

She got lucky with the suspended sentence,but everywhere she goes will garner nothing but contempt and derision.And she will feel miserable for the rest of her days,scorned by her family and friends.She can run,but can't hide from what she did.She's finished in society.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Just leaving the child in the back of the car while she went shopping would earn her a child abuse rap in the UK.

It seems likely that a competent police investigation would've quickly determined that abduction from the car was unlikely (witnesses? ccTV? fingerprints? signs of entry into the car?)

In the absence of that sort of evidence, proper questioning with the aid of psychiatric assistants might have uncovered the truth. (Is suspect profiling used in Japan?)

And then she admits to lying about the abduction and burying the body!! Seems it's pretty easy to get rid of somebody in Japan... especially if you're a woman.

But of course in the absence of evidence (which I'm sure a competent police force could've gathered if it had been available) she can't be convicted for killing the child.. (Having said that, I'm sure there have been convictions when the only evidence is a body + non-credible story from the main suspect) but for her other crimes, surely she has to do time?

1 ( +1 / -0 )

She should have been charged with obstruction of justice.

It does look like she may have killed her baby but if there is no proof, they cannot put her in jail for that.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

i am speechless, i am sorry, suspended sentence that is it? unbelievable

Unbelievable? Welcome to JAPAN!!

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Its amazing how most the readers of this very short article so easily concluded she is not being punished or justice is not done while the legal proceedings which probably took a long time and certainly examined far more information that any of us can know. I hope none of you ever end up in jury. This is a frightening trend I have noticed with this forum.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

Pathetic.... Toddlers just don't die under their blankets. God shall deal with her one way or anotht...considering th Japanese legal system is border line, third world....

-4 ( +0 / -4 )

Its very hard to believe that a mother finding her baby suddenly dead doesnt call the neighbors, relatives, a doctor or ambulance...anybody. But instead rushes out and calculatingly dumps the body in the manner of a murderer (or at least someone who has caused the death of another) and brazenly tells the police outright lies. Despite any lack of forensic evidence of foul play (which hasn`t always been necessary in some murder cases), considering she was given only a suspended sentence, you have to feel some salient facts are missing from this story.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Its amazing how most the readers of this very short article so easily concluded she is not being punished or justice is not done while the legal proceedings which probably took a long time and certainly examined far more information that any of us can know. I hope none of you ever end up in jury. This is a frightening trend I have noticed with this forum.

Exactly as I said: knee-jerk reactions. Unless you were in the court you won't know what the evidence given was like. Negligence for leaving the child in the car. Obstructing justice by hiding the body, yes... but murder? Where's the proof she killed the child?

As usual people are bringing their own prejudices to the table... I won't mention them or I'll get this deleted, but we all know what they are. Please just stop jumping to conclusions.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

The only solid criminal evidence against her was for the unlawful disposal of her childs body. Babies do die in their cots. And oddly when that happens some mothers dont behave rationally. The newspaper article doesnt answer all the questions but thats not its job, nor does it mean the right questions havent been asked. If they have and the woman was found to be unstable due to the premature death of her young child, what good would a custodial sentance serve?

Japans criminal justice system has its problems but thankfully one of those isnt to serve the purposes of the caterwauling mob.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Does Japan not care about their Children? Children falling from balconies,out of windows and now it is okay to smother them to death and bury the body.What kind of message has this Judge sent,Hope we don't see a sudden surge in SIDS.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

This is sad.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Since there presumably isn't any convincing evidence that she's guilty of murder, the sentence can't take that into account. A suspended sentence seems a bit light for deliberately wasting a lot of police time and money, but it's not completely unreasonable.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

This is ridicules...why is she not in prison!

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Does Japan not care about their Children? Children falling from balconies,out of windows and now it is okay to smother them to death and bury the body.What kind of message has this Judge sent,Hope we don't see a sudden surge in SIDS.

You have convicted her of murder without the facts... you don't know what happened.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Lets look at the facts for a moments a mother dumped her 2 year old child's body in the woods and then claimed abduction. I would call that a reasonable enough amount of evidence to suggest there was some foul play involved surrounding the death in the first place.

You are right that she is not guilty until proven otherwise. But just these actions alone imply something is amiss. Oh well that is just the way the justice system works here at times and elsewhere as well.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Matthew Simon: that's just it... implication and supposition. You can't sentence someone to murder or infanticide on a hunch, or a gut feeling. You need tangible forensic evidence or credible eye witnesses.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Thunderbird2 How many developed countries allow Mothers to bury their dead Children in the woods whether they died of natural causes or not.Get a grip!

1 ( +2 / -1 )

@darknuts

Thankfully Japan is not the USA and does not sentence according to popular opinion.

The US is also possibly the worst western country to compare a justice system with.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Honey, "How many developed countries allow Mothers to bury their dead Children in the woods whether they died of natural causes or not.Get a grip!"

The article indicates the woman has been found guilty of that particular charge. What's Thunderbird2 got to get a grip of? Hes pointing out that other than the crime for which she has been convicted the woman has been investigated and has nothing further to address. Grip firmly got and maintained. How about you?

0 ( +1 / -1 )

This is what I hate, she is sorry she was caught! Why saying and acting sorry after the fact gets you off in Japan is unbelievable!

Because that's not the reason why she "got off." It's hard to figure out what she was charged with but I'm assuming the prosecutor didn't press for murder...especially because it was too hard to prove by that point. It's interesting that she got a suspended sentence though. Want to know the situations and circumstances of the defendant that persuaded the judge to hand this sentence down.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

She should be in jail for lying to police, wasting police time and dumping a body, at the very least.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

She should be in jail for lying to police, wasting police time and dumping a body, at the very least.

I agree

1 ( +1 / -0 )

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