Death row inmate Masumi Hayashi’s “Lamentations” on Wakayama Curry Case | FRIDAY DIGITAL

Death row inmate Masumi Hayashi’s “Lamentations” on Wakayama Curry Case

"I told my four children to put themselves first and live their lives regardless of my trial." "I am sorry for not being more considerate of my eldest daughter's pain over the years, even though I am her mother, and all I can do is cry and apologize.

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Last June, her eldest daughter committed suicide with her four-year-old daughter…
What is she thinking now as she repeatedly asks for a retrial at the Osaka Detention Center?

Masumi Hayashi poses for a photo with her children. The top right is the eldest daughter, the bottom right is the eldest son, and Masumi is holding the third daughter. All the children are smiling.

On June 9 last year, a 37-year-old woman and a 4-year-old girl committed suicide by throwing themselves off the Kansai International Airport Bridge, which connects Rinku Town in Izumisano City, Osaka Prefecture, to Kansai International Airport Island. The deceased woman was Masumi Hayashi’s (60) eldest daughter, Shoko (pseudonym), and the baby girl was Shoko’s second daughter.

Just before the attempted suicide, Shoko called 119 from her home, saying that her eldest daughter was unconscious. She was taken to the hospital by the ambulance team, but her eldest daughter, Kokoro (age 16), was confirmed dead. The cause of death was traumatic shock, and it was suspected that she had been abused on a daily basis. Shoko was married in 2005, divorced in 2001, and remarried in 2003. She remarried in 2003. Her oldest daughter was born to her ex-husband, and her second daughter, a four-year-old who drowned, was born to her remarried husband.

On July 25, 1998, the Wakayama Curry Incident occurred. Arsenic was mixed into curry for a summer festival, resulting in acute arsenic poisoning of 67 people, four of whom died, including elementary and high school students.

Masumi Hayashi was arrested as a suspect. He appealed for acquittal, but was sentenced to death in the first trial, and his appeals were rejected. He is currently imprisoned in the Osaka Detention Center.

Hayashi and his wife have four children. At the time of the incident, their eldest daughter, Sachiko, was in the third year of junior high school and their eldest son, Seiichi (pseudonym), was in the fifth year of elementary school. Through Seiichi, we asked Masumi Hayashi to write us a letter about her current state of mind (everything in parentheses below is from her diary).

Since I learned of my eldest daughter’s death, I have been filled with remorse and have been thinking that I want to die and that I will die too.

At dawn on June 10th, my eldest daughter appeared to me in a dream. We were taking a bath together, but I couldn’t see my eldest daughter. She was lying on her back in the bathtub and sinking. I woke up thinking, “Oh no, I had a bad dream. It was still dark outside the window. When I saw the next day’s newspaper (Yomiuri Shimbun), I thought it was my eldest daughters. The newspaper listed my first grandchild’s real name, Shinzakura.

After the parents’ arrest, the four children were placed in an orphanage, and Masumi Hayashi was banned from seeing them for nearly four years.

During the first family visit, her eldest daughter asked her, “Which one of you is really him?

If you did it, please tell me you did it. If you did it, please tell me you did it.

I replied, “You’re an idiot. I scolded her, saying, “You’re an idiot. The whole country thinks it was you. My four sisters and brothers are the only allies I have left,’ my eldest daughter told me.

Shoko went to high school, but dropped out in her first year and started working in Osaka. Having no one to rely on, Shoko lived homeless for a week. She wrote a letter to her mother expressing her frustration.

She wrote a letter to her mother expressing her frustration: “As soon as the company or the store learns about the incident, I get fired. Every time, it’s a repeat. The four of us think it’s ridiculous that Mom should be executed. But everyone in Japan, except us, thinks it’s normal for mothers to be executed. That’s the reality.” (May 21, 2005)

Shoko was also a substitute mother for her younger siblings. And in the midst of a difficult situation, she met her lover.

They got married and soon after their first grandchild, Shinju, was born, and the three of them continued to visit each other. They made Shinzakura stand on the counter of the visiting room and showed her to me. She cried so hard when she saw my face that my eldest daughter soothed her and my husband held her throughout the visit.

For Masumi, visits with her eldest daughter and her husband and her first grandchild, Shinju, were a great source of joy and emotional support.

On June 28, 2005, the Osaka High Court dismissed the appeal. Three months after the high court ruling, Sachiko wrote a letter to her father. Her father, Kenji Hayashi, who had been convicted of insurance fraud, was living in Wakayama City after completing his prison sentence.

He was living in Wakayama City after serving a prison sentence. To tell the truth, I held a grudge against my mom and dad many times. But, Dad, I will help you. But, Dad, I will help you and we will fight until the end. Even if it results in a death sentence, it’s better than doing nothing and waiting for the death penalty. I want to see how far I can go, and I want to show the world what I can do. Right now, my whole family is helping each other and fighting.

However, the trial dragged on, the children grew up, and each became independent.

I told my children that regardless of my trial, they only have one life to live, so I told them to stay away (from the case) and live their lives by putting themselves first. I instructed him to register as a separate family when he turned 20.

Separate registration is when an adult leaves the family register in which he or she was enrolled and establishes a separate family register.

Masumi Hayashi, now in her 60s

It was after the Supreme Court ruling that Shoko stopped attending support meetings. Seiichi, her eldest son, said.

My sister appealed for my mother’s innocence at the meetings and answered questions from the media. At the same time, she became increasingly concerned about whether her children would be bullied at preschool and elementary school.

The Supreme Court decision must have been a big turning point for Masumi’s children. Naturally, Sachiko also had a desire to find her own happiness.

My eldest daughter said to me, ‘I can’t get involved with Mom unless she’s acquitted. I never heard from her that she was divorced, nor did I know that she had remarried and had a second daughter.

The death of Shoko Shinohara, who died just before she tried to force herself to commit suicide, is suspected to be an “abusive death.

In the ambulance, her remarriage partner mumbled, “I’ve done something irreparable.

The car driven by Sachiko headed for the Kansai International Airport Bridge instead of the hospital. Her husband, on the other hand, slipped out of the hospital and tried to commit suicide, but was unable to do so and was taken into custody on the street near Wakayama Port.

It is said that abuse is a chain reaction. However, Seiichi assures me that this is not the case.

I was never violated by my mother, not only by me, but also by my older and younger sisters. In my memory, my mother was kind.”

The case is still under investigation and the facts are still unknown. However, no matter what the truth is, Masumi Hayashi’s daughter is always seen as someone who would do something like this. The bullying of the two girls, who are still young, is also predictable. After the arrest of her parents, Shoko herself has experienced how horrible it is. All Shoko could see was despair. The height from the Kansai International Airport Bridge to the surface of the sea was dizzying.

On the photo frame on her desk, there were three pictures of her four children smiling and making the V-sign. My eldest daughter and Shinzakura with smiles on their faces at Disneyland, the Purikura on the letterhead, the down coat that was brought to me during my first visit, all are now mementos of Sachiko. I spend my time hugging them.

When my eldest daughter came to visit me, she paid attention to cheering me up and didn’t say anything about herself. Since her arrest, I have only been able to cry and apologize for my lack of concern for my eldest daughter’s pain over the years, even though I am her mother. I couldn’t even protect my own child. ……〉

With more gray hair and missing teeth, Masumi Hayashi has reached the age of 60.

He is now in his 60s. “Sometimes he says, ‘I don’t mind, I didn’t do it,’ and other times he says he has a meeting and the moment the door is opened, his body seems to shake.

Yoshihiro Inoue, a former Aum Shinrikyo member who, like Masumi Hayashi, was detained at the Osaka Detention Center. On the morning of July 6, 2006, Masumi heard Inoue’s cries of death.

Why did this happen?”

Shortly thereafter, the sentence was carried out.

After that, my mother became afraid to open the door to her room.

On December 21 last year, three people were executed at the Tokyo Detention Center and Osaka Detention Center. It remains to be seen whether the door to retrial will open for Masumi Hayashi or whether she will be led to the death row.

In a letter Masumi Hayashi received at the end of last year, she wrote a confession to her eldest daughter and grandchildren. Visits with her eldest daughters were a source of emotional support for Masumi during her imprisonment.
On June 9 last year, Masumi’s eldest daughter attempted to commit suicide from a bridge at Kansai International Airport. A man passing by reported the incident and she was pronounced dead at the hospital.
Masumi wrote her memories of her eldest daughter and the joy of seeing her first grandchild on 20 sheets of letterhead.
The fence of the Hayashi house, which was covered with graffiti after the incident. There were six members in the family, and sometimes seven, including a housemate. The house was destroyed in a fire and the land is now vacant.
A month before their arrest, Mr. and Mrs. Hayashi gave an interview to FRIDAY. Masumi was speaking quickly, proclaiming her innocence.
Seiichi, the eldest son, answers FRIDAY’s interview. He still goes to see his mother, Masumi, and brings her gifts.

(Interview and composition by Yukiharu Takahashi, nonfiction writer)

From “FRIDAY” February 4, 2022 issue

  • Interview and composition Yukiharu Takahashi, nonfiction writer PHOTO Kei Kato (4th, 8th), Jun Mayumi (7th)

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