crime

Parents arrested after 8-month-old baby dies of suspected malnutrition, neglect

26 Comments

Police have arrested the parents of an 8-month-old baby boy who was found dead of suspected malnutrition and neglect in the city of Kure in Hiroshima Prefecture.

According to police, Mao Arai, 41, and his wife Ayaka, 22, did not feed their son Rito since early February and did not take any measures to help him despite being aware that his health was deteriorating, Fuji TV reported.

On Wednesday morning, the husband called emergency services, informing them that his son’s “body was cold.” When authorities arrived at the site, they found the baby lying on a futon in a state of cardiac arrest. He was later pronounced dead.

There were no injuries on Rito's body, but his ribs were showing and he was visibly underweight. According to investigators, he weighed four kilograms, half the average for his age.

The family lived in a two-story house, with the baby staying in a room on the first floor, Sankei Shimbun reported. Police found no other items but a futon in the child’s room and there was no baby food in the house.

Neighbors were quoted by police as saying that they weren’t aware that the couple had a child, because they had never seen him.

The two suspects are apparently providing conflicting statements, with the wife telling police that she “could not care enough for the child,” while the husband is denying neglect, saying that the baby was not weak and that they had been caring for him.

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26 Comments
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Two of my NEWBORNS were just a fraction under 4 kgs. This baby was 8 months old! What on earth were these two doing?

9 ( +11 / -2 )

No words. I will never understand this type of behaviour. For anyone that has had the joy of having children, those early months are amazing. Tiring, but amazing. And for anyone worth their salt, there is an overwhelming sense of responsibility for this beautiful little child that is utterly and completely dependent on you.

I understand postpartum depression and all of that, but even that doesn't explain the wilful starving to death of little Rito. And with the husband being 41, I don't care if this was a child that was not wanted or whatever, I have utter contempt for him for not being a responsible father. His wife is 22. That does not excuse her. But him??? This is his son!! He is not worthy of being called a man, a father!! I am a father, my son is 2 years 9 months old today and I just cannot express the disgust I am feeling.

7 ( +9 / -2 )

On Wednesday morning, the husband called emergency services, informing them that his son’s “body was cold.”

I'll tell you something, letting your baby starve to death, now that's bloody cold. This couple would rather discard their own child, than use contraception. Sickening.

4 ( +7 / -3 )

Mao Arai, 41, and his wife Ayaka, 22...

Stop right there, I've heard enough.

RIP Rito-kun!! :-(

0 ( +6 / -6 )

This couple needs to put in a cage and starved to death..Sick just sick...RIP Rito

5 ( +8 / -3 )

What monsters.

5 ( +5 / -1 )

doing this to an adult is abhorrent. but doing this to a newborn is just sociopathic.they deserve to be put down like the animals they are.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Looking at Japanese sites, Mao has really pink hair and Mao may be a name he adopted to go along with his weirdness. Anyways forget that, he or she, this person and Ayaka need to be behind bars pronto.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

What's wrong with people? My heart breaks every time a story like this pops up. As a parent of a toddler, the last thing that would even come to mind is hurt a child let alone your own.

Even the most extreme punishment would be enough for these 2 wastes of space.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Mao Arai, 41, and his wife Ayaka, 22... Stop right there, I've heard enough.

gotta agree with The Godfather.

-4 ( +3 / -7 )

My heart breaks every time a story like this pops up. As a parent of a toddler, the last thing that would even come to mind is hurt a child let alone your own.

You took the words right out of my mouth. My son is 4 months old, so this is like a knife in my heart.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

My daughter just turned 6 months. When she cries from hunger it stabs me in the heart, it's a mother's instinct to feed her child and quell crying. I can't imagine how much little Rito-kun must have cried and cried exhausted and weak for nourishment.. it breaks my heart :'( I can imagine maybe the young mother had undiagnosed pp depression but that's no excuse for the father. How do you not notice a malnourished, desperately crying? Sickening.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

I usually get extremely upset from reading these articles again and again and again of a growing problem in this country that continues to go unchecked, but with this one, as a father of a 10 month old, I was on the verge of tears.

These people, BOTH the mother and the father, are murderers - worthless to society and better off dead. Their history growing up, the age difference in their marriage, post partum depression - whatever it may be, none of it matters as absolutely nothing could come close to excusing their actions.

That baby was depending on them, scared, confused, hungry - crying each and every night wondering why his own mother would not give him even milk... How can a human being let a baby starve and just leave him there? Via the news - they didn't even bring the baby when they went grocery shopping! Yet they could provide the dog with a winter coat...

Like a Japanese news caster said this morning - "this is not abuse, this is murder". BOTH the mother and father don't deserve jali time, they deserve the worst, most agonizing death imaginable - the same experience they provided to their baby.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Mao may be a name he adopted to go along with his weirdness.

I don't know, I currently have three students named Mao (two girls, one boy). They are all Japanese.

Two of my NEWBORNS were just a fraction under 4 kgs.

OUCH!!!

1 ( +2 / -1 )

While I find this story absolutely criminal, I cannot really agree with those who give the "age difference" so much importance. My father was 18 years older than my mother and we could not have had more loving and caring parents. There's just something extremely wrong with these two morons.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

these two animals should be locked up forever, but still not enough.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Now I have come to re-realize that children cannot choose their parents. Hope the baby boy could be reborn of decent parents, in his next life, if existed...

0 ( +0 / -0 )

The fact that the neighbors didn't knew that they had a baby is a mystery. They intentionally killed the baby for some reasons they are not telling. This people should be locked up, what kind of people would do such a thing to a harmless baby. May his soul rest in peace.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

That is so sad, I hope the parents get more than a slap on the wrist, clearly they didn't want the child and rather than being responsible and putting him up for adoption they just neglect him, I'm surprised the father called the police and didn't just dump the body somewhere. Cowards.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

That is heartbreaking.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Many people in Japan treat children as property, not as humans

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Yes, it's heartbreaking! There are too many things wrong with this story to even begin!

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Another day, another sad story (usual several) of child abuse tragedy in japan

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

What is wrong with Japan!? Four cases of parents murdering children this week alone.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Despite the fact that their population is dwindling, you could see news of parents killing their children for no apparent or logical reasons. as @smithinjapan said, 4 cases in a week is alarming, and that is just the reported cases.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

This story makes me feel ill. I am by no means a perfect parent but starving a young baby to death is just torture. They tortured their baby to death. I'll be cuddling my daughter tonight extra long, that's for sure. Unbelievable.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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