crime

Woman arrested for leaving father with Alzheimer’s at expressway parking area

41 Comments

Police in Otsu, Shiga Prefecture, have arrested a 46-year-old unemployed woman on suspicion of neglecting her responsibility as a caregiver after she left her 79-year-old father, who suffers from Alzheimer’s disease, at a parking area along the Chugoku Expressway in Kobe’s Kita Ward.

According to police, Ritsuko Tanaka drove her father to the Akamatsu Parking Area, which is about 70 kilometers away from their home, at around 6:45 p.m. on Nov 22, Fuji TV reported. She left him there and returned home.

Police were called after the man was seen wandering around. He was unable to tell them his name or address but could say his daughter’s name.

The woman was arrested on Monday night. She was quoted by police as saying she was finding it difficult to look after her father and that she thought it would be better if he were found by police and placed in a facility where he could be taken care of.

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41 Comments
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That is desperately sad. Why hadn't the authorities stepped in to help earlier? Or was she unable to find the information or get the help she needed? As an 'unemployed' woman - which is laughable, for she has been employed as a caregiver for who knows how long; just hasn't been paid for it - they may have told her she has to take care of him.

Forty six - still young - and not allowed to do anything except take care of a sick man who may or may not have been good to her in past years. Clearly no other family able or willing to help her. Her own mental state must be extremely fragile.

I hope the man does get decent care, but it should have been made available without this extreme act.

21 ( +22 / -1 )

well at least she didn't strangle him to death cuz she was worn out from caring for him

16 ( +19 / -3 )

I've spent just a small time with someone that had Alzheimer's, it was a terrible experience.... especially if that person is the angry type. I wouldn't do what she did but I would not arrest her for it. She needs help with him, not punishment.

14 ( +14 / -0 )

and Alzheimer's is a progressive disease so her job was not going to get any easier as he got older

12 ( +12 / -0 )

Government and local agencies need to do more to help families dealing with the dementia crisis. Even having a nurse share duties in her place so she can have a break once in a while, a few times a week, can do a lot. The need is relentless 24/7 tiring and stressful. I don't condone her actions but at her wits end I can understand and have sympathy for the whole sad situation

Hospitals needs to have a memory ward and accept patients.

12 ( +12 / -0 )

I disagree that she was unemployed it's a full-time job taking care of her father and she was getting paid through his pension

11 ( +12 / -1 )

It is a very sad story as she cannot work because she has to take care of her father every day. I guess their only financial support is from the father’s pension and they cannot afford to pay for any kind of proper care for him. It must be even harder if she doesn’t have any support from her family. This lady was then extremely desperate. But on the other hand, she should have seek for help rather then dumping him like puppy in a service area.

Unfortunately, with the aging population in Japan there are many more people like her who are suffering in silence. It is very demanding to take of elderly every day and especially when the access to ressources is limited. I think the government will to have to provide financial help and services for people in this situation.

10 ( +10 / -0 )

the girl can't marry, can't have her own life, no job, no future, and when the father dies no money...and people are blaming her. NO one's offering any kind of help?

10 ( +10 / -0 )

insane wayne do you have an idea how much does it cost to send a person to a facility? yup, around 300,000 yen a month. A person with a pension usually gets 50,000 yen a month, a company employee probably 80,000. So no its not an option. We have one in the family and we are lucky to have some help, we do rotation because a person with alzhiemer just dont follow any kind of rule. You can't take your eyes off even for a moment because they will surely wreck havoc. If you can recommend a place that is cheap then please let her know.

10 ( +10 / -0 )

As I have been saying for years here, do YOU wanna grow old in Japan?!?!?

It is ABUNDANTLY clear one of the govt's ways of dealing with issues like this is to do little & the people suffer.

The govt has taken taxes etc for decades, BLOWN it all & printed more $$$ which it continues to waste.

With the number of elderly skyrocketing we are set to hear about more & MORE shocking stories about what happens to the old, the sick, the poor

Its going to get real ugly, actually it is already pretty ugly

Future here is grim

8 ( +8 / -0 )

Repeating myself again, but being the sole carer of a sick and/or demented adult quickly becomes impossible. You need help, no one can do it alone and not snap physically and mentally. Every carer needs regular respite. This help and care does not exist in Japan.

7 ( +8 / -1 )

What those stricken with Alzheimer’s forget or remember is amazing. He'd forgotten himself but remembers his daughter. Parenting is a powerful force.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

Massive assumption du jour: 

This father invest his time and love to bring her up, only to have this happen.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

There's a long history of this sort of abandonment in rural areas of Japan. Imamura Shohei made a movie about it in the '90's. Not condoning it, just pointing it out.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

The poor man obviously deserves much better than to be cast aside when he can't function and the daughter feels desperate. There has to be some type of public health facility that can take him into care or what about other family members to assist in this matter. Makes me very sad to hear this story. I have watched my mother slip into alzheimers slowly for almost 15 years now, can't speak, walk or feed herself. I had to put her in a not so nice but caring facility because her US health care insurance (medicare) is all i can afford to use as the yearly cost for her maintenance exceeds $100,000. I hope he gets the care he needs and the daughter can come to terms for her dilemma.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

There’s an interesting twist on the home carer scenario. At least she didn’t kill him, like so many others do. She just took him somewhere and dumped him like a puppy you don’t want.

They should not post that that she was unemployed. She was employed as a full time carer for her ailing father.

4 ( +6 / -2 )

She could have sent him to a day facility to help ease her stress, but she probably didn't want to spend the money. Japan isn't insensitive to this problem. There are places to take sick elderly just as there are places to take unwanted babies

Insane Wayne

You seem to have a lot of insight on what she can do and you seem to know her financial situation very well too. But if you had read the article, you'd have known that she is unemployed (no income) thus making it hard for her to "have sent him to a day facility to help ease her stress". Yes there are places to take the sick and elderly, but again, if you had read the article, you'd have known that she is unemployed (no income) thus making it hard for her to do so. And most Japanese people find it best to not "bother others with their problems". Which is why she didn't put her hand out for help.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

they won't put her in jail though so what's the point she has to take care of the guy that's her jail

3 ( +5 / -2 )

There might be many reasons for such attempt but that way was wrong in any case.

However, GOVT. should assist more for those elderly peoples.

We should keep in mind that those are now older, they create the beautiful Japan by spending their most important young & spring time in hard work.

So, GOVT. must take care of them at any cost.

This is most important then buying fighter aircraft from overseas.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

This is as ungrateful as you can get.

2 ( +8 / -6 )

they are not useless financially because they are collecting pensions which other family members often depend on

2 ( +5 / -3 )

I know that it requires a lot of work taking care of family members with special needs and situations like this with little or almost no help will result to this but a little compassion to the man that gave you life.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

This is my biggest fear in life to get old and nothing and throw u everywhere. :(

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Insane Wayne

Japan is a society run by women. Men are disposable. They are “salary men” and viewed useless and worthless when they are old.

Moderator,

I, as well as other readers find the above comment sexist, biased and extremely offensive.

2 ( +7 / -5 )

Depressing in every way. Makes me appreciate my family and friends.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

GW & Luddite,

Great comments. My mother-in-law was ill for 3 years and my wife cared for her in 3 month stretches, wife is a saint and it still wore on her. Can't imagine 24/7/365.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

@InsaneWayne: Japan is a society run by women. Men are disposable. They are “salary men” and viewed useless and worthless when they are old.

Just yesterday there was a story of the 60 something husband strangling his bedridden wife to death with his necktie. Both men and women and disposable if they become infirm. My advice is take care of your health so you don't end up bedridden and treat your companion good in case you do so that he/she will be willing to take care of you.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

erbavivaToday 09:25 am JSTthe girl can't marry, can't have her own life, no job, no future, and when the father dies no money...and people are blaming her. NO one's offering any kind of help?

the "girl" is 46 years old.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Insane Wayne

As I said, many people here choose to keep their problems to themselves rather than bother someone else even though its that other person's job. Where I live, there a guy, probably in his 40's taking care of his mother who is just bones very frail looking. I know of many senior care facilities around here and everyone knows of their existence/locations too. But he, like the woman in this article, don't have enough money to place their parents in these care facilities or just don't want to burden anyone.You say these facilities are cheap? How much do you pay per month for your loved ones in their facilities?

Just as mothers murder their babies when they could put them in a hospital in Kyushu known for its "baby hatch"

Then why don't you offer to help council some of these mothers so they don't have to "murder their babies when they could put them in a hospital in Kyushu known for its "baby hatch"

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Does anyone know for sure that he has pension money coming in? If he did, then his daughter might not have abandoned him in the expressway parking lot.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

How can you just abandon your father in a parking lot?

-2 ( +3 / -5 )

Damn that's cold.

"Thank you for raising me for 46 years, good luck as you wander aimlessly.........."

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

maybe it is just a case of (hereditary) alzheimer

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

I can understand the stress of caring for someone who can not care for them self, But their is always a Right Way and a Wrong Way of doing things. In this case Ritsuko  definitely went about it the Wrong Way. I am sure with a little research she could have found a senior citizen program / facility that would have taken care of him. I believe she left him at the expressway parking area to die, get hit by a passing vehicle, Then end of story - she is responsibility free.

-4 ( +0 / -4 )

So much for family values. This father invest his time and love to bring her up, only to have this happen. That is disrespectful.

-4 ( +1 / -5 )

Does she knows that she might get old too?

-4 ( +1 / -5 )

omotenashi at work

-5 ( +0 / -5 )

She could have sent him to a day facility to help ease her stress, but she probably didn't want to spend the money. Japan isn't insensitive to this problem. There are places to take sick elderly just as there are places to take unwanted babies

-8 ( +1 / -9 )

There are LOTS of comments detailing how EXPENSIVE care is in Japan. They are not true. I mentioned a DAY program that is both affordable and convenient for people of ALL levels of income. There are government programs and insurance policies that support people in need. Japan is the richest, best run and most developed of all socialist/communist countries. It is a lie to say that there aren't social programs available for Japanese people in need.

This woman chose to treat her father horribly. Just as mothers murder their babies when they could put them in a hospital in Kyushu known for its "baby hatch"

-8 ( +0 / -8 )

By her actions she's obviously the type of person who deserves the punishment of taking care of an invalid old man.

-17 ( +0 / -17 )

Japan is a society run by women. Men are disposable. They are “salary men” and viewed useless and worthless when they are old.

-22 ( +4 / -26 )

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