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Body in Chiba river confirmed as that of missing 7-year-old girl

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Using DNA analysis, the body was identified as that of Saya Minami

From time when she went missing to finally they found her body, time lenght is not that long, so her body won't decayed that much, also she might still using same dress. So DNA it's not that useful, it's more useful if they can explain what really happened during she went missing.

-11 ( +4 / -15 )

This contributes to my belief that Japan is not safe for children as in other industrialised nations.

Your excuses cannot change the fact that Japan is still one of the safest countries in the world..

Keep trying..

0 ( +18 / -18 )

Sorry but a 7 year old child, with plans to play at the park, doesn't just wander off for about a kilometer to go check out a river. I sure hope the police are treating this as an abduction case.

S

11 ( +16 / -5 )

So DNA it's not that useful,

Two weeks are more than enough time to make the remains unrecognizable, specially for bodies that have been submerged in water. There is a huge difference from having remains that match the victim description and having a sure identification without any realistic possibility of being wrong.

A sure identification method is extremely useful to bring closure to the family.

10 ( +12 / -2 )

Your excuses cannot change the fact that Japan is still one of the safest countries in the world..

Keep trying..

go ahead, face that little girl's parents, and tell them exactly that while making eye contact with them.

-6 ( +12 / -18 )

So DNA it's not that useful,

I was thinking the same, from the time they found her , they knew she was the girl.

DNA is part of the procedure now to officially identify a body and confirm the identity

4 ( +5 / -1 )

Teaching a child to swim is paramount.

Too many parents just leave this important skill out in Japan and assume the school will take care of it - they won’t.

Some of my most enduring memories are being in the water with my child…

3 ( +7 / -4 )

Your excuses cannot change the fact that Japan is still one of the safest countries in the world..

Yes the country is safer than most but common sense tells me you don't let a 1st grade girl go off on her own to the park. If it was in front of her own house, maybe, but not a ways away.

2 ( +5 / -3 )

Sorry but a 7 year old child, with plans to play at the park, doesn't just wander off for about a kilometer to go check out a river.

There is CCTV of her going on her own on the kickboard to the wrong park, which happens to be next to the river. What happened after that remains a mystery, but her going to the park next to the river is not. There must have been a mixup with her mother over which park they were going to. If the girl had been to the other park only with other people, say her friends, her mother may have had no knowledge of it.

6 ( +7 / -1 )

Why do children have such easy access to waterways?

You propose we fence off and barricade every meter of accessible water near residential areas across the entire country? That doesn’t sound feasible.

There must have been a mixup with her mother over which park they were going to.

Agreed. Kids that age mix up names of things easily, or make presumptions . Totally understandable. So tragic. I can’t imagine the mother’s feeling when she arrived at the park and couldn’t find any trace of her.

7 ( +7 / -0 )

Like a few others here, when seeing the various timelines and places related to that case, I also developed quite some doubts if not an additional person could have been involved and an abduction or other crimes have taken place. Especially the last part, the kind of wild area where the shoes and socks had been found and then that little girl should have walked barefooted and willingly, while every step massively hurts, quite a distance into the very cold rivers’ water for some bathing or swimming, that seems to me in sum very improbable and suspicious.

1 ( +4 / -3 )

SpideyToday  07:54 am JST

Sorry but a 7 year old child, with plans to play at the park, doesn't just wander off for about a kilometer to go check out a river. I sure hope the police are treating this as an abduction case.

Yes they do. If I wasn't looking closely at the children I was watching here in Japan, they would have and I wouldn't have known where they had gone. That's why it's important to always know where the children are. You're the adult you should know that a child is curious. Maybe this was the first time but it only take once.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Yes the country is safer than most but common sense tells me you don't let a 1st grade girl go off on her own to the park. If it was in front of her own house, maybe, but not a ways away.

Also, it's very odd that she would carefully take off her shoes and socks, place them by the river and get in.

My wife and friends are convinced that this girl was killed so hopefully, an investigation will be made.

Given the oddities surrounding the case, the default assumption of many Japanese, realists under no starry-eyed illusion about ‘Safety Country’, is that there is a high possibility that foul play was involved. There are loons galore here, the place is overflowing with them and it’s no mere idle speculation that a sicko’s twisted fantasies cost this defenseless little girl her life. Then there’s the irresponsible, or worse, mother angle that demands full investigation.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

Her disappearance led to an extensive police search which involved the use of helicopters and boats.

But once again they failed and a random person found the body.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

Kickboard Indicates level of comfort in the water but probably couldn’t actually swim.

Lots of the a private ‘swimming lessons’ in Japan are a Mama and baby water playtime run by Fitness centers. I signed up asking straight out “can you teach my wife & child to swim? We live near water.” they said yes.

Wife and 3yo spent a year+ taking weekly “swimming lessons” at a local fitness center both would be clinging to the side if you took the kickboard away.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Sorry but a 7 year old child, with plans to play at the park, doesn't just wander off for about a kilometer to go check out a river. I sure hope the police are treating this as an abduction case.

A few things don't quite add up with this case. I truly hope there is further investigation!

1 ( +1 / -0 )

@letsberealistic

However, we cannot live in Japan or even spend much time there because, for children and women, it is more like a developing nation than a developed one with regard to safety.

I will no make any comments about kids in the middle of this tragedy, but regarding women I really do not understand how you can make such a comment. Japan is much much much safer than other countries.

“So, how do the numbers look when considering sexual offenses against women? The table below shows the number of rape cases per 100,000 people. While this table contains some old data, it is clear that Japan is very safe when compared with other countries. There are only 0.99 cases in Japan for 51.04 in England and Wales, with 38.55 cases in the United States, and 20.12 in France”

https://livejapan.com/en/article-a0002373/

2 ( +3 / -1 )

I believe there is come confusion

kickboard=pushable scooter

kickboard= swimming assistance device

3 ( +3 / -0 )

@Letsberealistic

Thanks for your long and detailed answer. There are a number of things in what you said which I did not think about but I still worry much less for my daughter living in Japan than if I was in my native France. Based on your information, I will be more carefull though.

Just curious. Where are you currently living?

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Really sad for the family. RIP little girl.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Why are there posters assuming the worst?

The girl took off her shoes and socks and left them on the riverbank.

That doesn’t seem like a confrontation has occurred.

And no Japan is not an unsafe country for females!

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

Japan has a drowning rate similar to developing nations (2.2 compared to 0.6 in Australia, 1.1 USA).

And we see children drowning in the news with some regularity. This contributes to my belief that Japan is not safe for children as in other industrialised nations.

If you're serious about that you have to consider all forms or causes of deaths, eg diseases , accidents crimes etc

Anyway, places with lots of water and easier access to it would be expected to have higher mortality because of it. Kind of like the US would be expected to have higher child mortality due to guns

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Japan has a drowning rate similar to developing nations (2.2 compared to 0.6 in Australia, 1.1 USA).

And we see children drowning in the news with some regularity. This contributes to my belief that Japan is not safe for children as in other industrialised nations.

But according to the link below, the drowning rate among children in Japan is very low. From the linked article:

Some countries (Japan, Finland and Greece) had a relatively low rank in mortality rate among children aged 0–4 years, but had a high rank in mortality rate among older adults. On the contrary, South Africa and Colombia had a relatively high rank among children aged 0–4 years, but had a relatively low rank in mortality rate among older adults. With regard to body of water involved, the proportion involving a bathtub was extremely high in Japan (65%) followed by Canada (11%) and the USA (11%). Of the 13 634 drowning deaths involving bathtubs in Japan between 2009 and 2011, 12 038 (88%) were older adults aged 65 years or above. 

https://injuryprevention.bmj.com/content/21/e1/e43

1 ( +1 / -0 )

@kurisupisu

"Teaching a child to swim is paramount.

Too many parents just leave this important skill out in Japan and assume the school will take care of it - they won’t."

The schools normally teach swimming and do a decent job. However, because of the COVID-19 pandemic, swim classes were either cancelled or drastically cut back in the past 2 years. Also the open pool times during summer were entirely eliminated in the past two years. So we now, unfortunately, have a set of elementary school kids that don't have sufficient swimming skills. So parents need to look for and pay forward alternatives. Yet another added stress from the pandemic.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Surveillance cameras show she went to the second park near the river alone on her kickboard, which was found in the Nagareyama park. She was clearly not abducted from the local park, but no one knows for sure what happened after those surveillance images. No one actually witnessed her in either park, but the weather forecast was poor that day, so maybe that is why. I think she had a sad accident, but not everyone thinks so because the area where her shoes were found was searched several times the day she went missing, and no one found socks and shoes there.

The full story with a Japanese news link and video is here.

12 Days After a 7-Year-Old Girl Disappears in Japan, a Child’s Body Is Found in a River (vice.com)

3 ( +3 / -0 )

From my personal experience here raising 2 kids, swimming "teaching" at school was a joke.

I was a qualified swimming instructor in Australia and school based lessons here from my observations are beyond poor.

Classes of 35 ~ 40 kids basically put through the motions. Already good swimmers benefited from the extra pool time but beginners to mids were just wasting their time re learning much. And where were the professional instructors???

Modern swimming education is not about doing laps or pretty stroke development.

It's about familiarizing kids with water, breaking down fears, teaching survival techniques etc and as things progress then stroke development becomes more intensive.

And most kids experience of "swimming lessons" here, are in the relative safety of pools.

And most kids drown in rivers, ponds, lakes or the sea.

Sadly the little girl Saya possibly had a love of water but not the skills to cope with even a simple slip in.

We probably will never know the full story.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

May that innocent child rest in peace.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Her thing popping up in timely fashion is the biggest clue of fowl play no marks or injuries test for chloroform or similar drugs as already mentioned above will the do the autopsy is a big question n body not decomposing after 2 weeks also a big question autopsy will reveal time of death too pray that she gets the justice

0 ( +0 / -0 )

My heart breaks just to read this. Poor little person. RIP!!

0 ( +0 / -0 )

A tragic end to the story. RIP to the little girl.

For those saying they wish Japanese schools taught swimming, to do. I don't know how good it is, but I can tell you in my country schools don't have pools at all, and we don't have PE classes around a pool, either.

That said, I can't tell you how many times I've heard the nonsense about how Japan is so safe kids can go to and fro by themselves, including riding trains to school without adult supervision, etc. This little girl is why you do NOT do that, and it is such a horrible way to learn such a lesson.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

I live in the area where she probably entered the water and the day she went missing I was taking the Musashino line over the Edo River and noticed how flooded & turbulent it was due to the recently passed typhoons rain...there are many soccer pitches in that area and the water level had risen so much that they were under water, so I'm wondering why a 7 yr old would have no fear of taking their shoes & socks off to wade in & play in an "obvious to even a child" dangerous area...can imagine how terribly scary the last moments of her life must have been & I pray it was accident and not deliberate

1 ( +1 / -0 )

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