Honjo 5-year-old boy abandoned by his “roommate and his common-law wife, whose behavior was too abnormal before the crime.” | FRIDAY DIGITAL

Honjo 5-year-old boy abandoned by his “roommate and his common-law wife, whose behavior was too abnormal before the crime.”

Unexplained incident in a house where a boy, his mother, a 34-year-old man who lives with her, and his 54-year-old common-law wife live together.

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Shortly after 8:00 a.m. on August 6. Suspect Kakimoto is sent to Yorii Police Station for prosecution. She was a mother who always cared about her son and took good care of him.

Ayumu was an active child. He liked to play with plastic rails, and when his mother came to pick him up, he would always say, ‘I did it! I’m home!” He would run up to them and leave happily. There was no visible loss of energy or signs of abuse on Ayumu’s body.

Sleeping in the cold dirt was the body of a child so small.

On March 5, Saitama Prefectural Police arrested Ayumu Kakimoto’s mother, Chika Kakimoto (30), and his roommates, Hiroki Niwa (34) and Yoko Ishii (54), for burying the body of 5-year-old Ayumu Kakimoto under the floor. The suspect was arrested on suspicion of abandoning a corpse. The incident was triggered by a call to the police from the city hall. A reporter from the society section of a national newspaper said

On March 2, Honjo City Hall reported to the Honjo Police Department that the safety of a mother and her child had not been confirmed. When the police investigated, the case came to light when the suspect, Kakimoto, stated that he buried Ayumu’s body under the floor of his house in Honjo City. The Niwa suspects removed the tatami mats from the living room on the south side of the first floor and dumped Ayumu’s body under the tatami mats. The prefectural police are investigating how Niwa, Ishii, Kakimoto, and their son came to live together in the house where the body was dumped.

Neighbors also describe how the body was found.

On the night of March 3, about 20 police gathered in front of the house where the incident took place, shining flashlights around the area and looking for something. Then Mr. Kakimoto returned on his bicycle, and after talking with the police officers for a while, he went into his house. The next day, a lot of police officers were there again, so I was suspicious as to what had happened.”

Ayumu was found in a changed state on March 5, three days after the city’s report. The cause of Ayumu’s death is currently being investigated by the Saitama Prefectural Police. As mentioned at the beginning of this article, Ayumu was apparently in good health, but people around him had noticed slight changes in his behavior for some time.

Around September of last year, there were times when he would not respond when we tried to talk to him, or he would respond in a completely different way from what we asked him. At that time, Ayumu seemed to be restless, wobbling and bumping into his friends. On one occasion, he made a gesture as if he was defending himself as soon as a childcare worker tried to take something out of his pocket. Even though there was no physical abuse, we suspected the possibility of psychological abuse, so we carefully watched over the children and reported each incident to the administration. …… It is really frustrating,” (Ayumu’s day-care center)

Kakimoto and his son entered the preschool in April 2005. Ayumu was 0 years old. At first, the family of three, including the father, lived together.

She came to the entrance ceremony with her husband. I heard that Ms. Kakimoto, who is from Osaka, followed her husband to Saitama. However, she separated from her husband after that and moved in with a friend for about six months in ’20. At that time, Ms. Kakimoto was working hard to rent an apartment as soon as possible, but she left her friend’s house early last fall because she said she met Niwa”.

Due to small differences in values in their lives, the Kakimoto mother and son decided to leave their acquaintance’s house. Through an acquaintance, they arrived at the house where Niwa and Ishii live.

Around 3:30 p.m. on August 8. An investigation was being conducted in the yard of the house. Ayumu was buried in the ground under the floor on the first floor, with his head to the north, on his back.

After moving to that house, I asked Kakimoto-san where she currently lives, but she didn’t want to say much, saying, ‘I don’t want my husband to find out,’ or ‘I don’t want to cause trouble for the people I live with. The preschool did not want to go into the matter too deeply, as there was a risk that Ayumu might stop coming to preschool in the worst case scenario if we were to break the trusting relationship with Ms. Kakimoto by persistently asking her more questions.

One day, Ayumu-kun was saying to the car that came to pick him up, “I’m sorry for making you wait,” and I felt uncomfortable with his behavior, which was not typical of a five-year-old child.

We repeatedly asked the government officials to investigate the possibility of abuse. However, because the mother, Ms. Kakimoto, had not raised an SOS, the administration decided that it was not possible to say that it was abuse.

A house in Honjo City where the boy’s body was found. Three men and a woman were living together.

What kind of people were Niwa and Ishii, who lived with the Kakimoto mother and son? According to a neighbor, Niwa and Ishii were first seen together about 10 years ago.

Niwa was short, stocky, and had short hair. He always wore glasses. His physique itself was stocky. Ishii was fat and had brown hair, and she looked cute for a woman in her fifties. Both of them always wore T-shirts and sweatshirts. They always went out on their bicycles.

In addition, there have always been many puzzling aspects of their lives together.

Originally, there was an elderly woman in her 70s living in the house with them, but about five years ago, she said, “I’m going to be killed! and once ran barefoot to a nearby house for help. I looked outside and saw Niwa and Ishii riding around the neighborhood on bicycles in circles looking for the old lady. About 10 neighbors gathered together and hid the grandmother inside the house so that the two would not find her, and then called the police.

The police also gave them temporary protection, but they were soon returned to their home. It was some time later that the grandmother and her dachshund disappeared. I think it is only in the last year or so that Mr. Kakimoto has been coming and going from that house,” said a neighbor.

It was around last summer that a restaurant owner in the neighborhood noticed the bizarre relationship between Niwa and Ishii, Kakimoto and his son, and reported it to the Child Guidance Center. The restaurant owner said.

The restaurant owner said, “I think it was around June or July of last year when Mr. Niwa and Ms. Ishii first came to the restaurant. Since then, they have been coming to the restaurant once a week, sometimes twice. Mr. Ishii was especially amiable, saying, ‘Hi,’ and ‘It was delicious.

It was not long after that that Kakimoto-san and Ayumu-kun began coming to the restaurant. At first, the four of them sat at a table together, and Niwa lectured Ayumu throughout the meal.

He wasn’t yelling, so I couldn’t hear what he was saying, but I could tell right away by the look on Mr. Niwa’s face that he was angry. for about an hour and a half to two hours, Mr. Niwa was mad at Ayumu-kun the whole time, and Mr. Kakimoto and Ms. Ishii I listened silently next to them while they ate. Although I felt uncomfortable, at first I thought, ‘Maybe the child did something very bad.

However, from then on, the owner felt uncomfortable with Ayumu’s constant scolding every time he came to the store.

The second time, he was sitting in the tatami room, and Mr. Niwa began to lecture Ayumu again, just as he had done the previous time. Ayumu was forced to sit on his knees for two hours, which is abnormal for a five-year-old child. Moreover, the three adults, including Mr. Niwa, were eating while Ayumu was being lectured, and Ayumu was the only one who was not allowed to eat the fried rice he had ordered, and was just listening to the lecture with a downcast expression on his face.

From Kakimoto’s Facebook page. An acquaintance of the suspect Kakimoto said, “This is a picture taken at a nursery school field day when Ayumu was only 1 or 2 years old. At that time, I had not yet separated from my husband,” she said tearfully.

After the sermon was over, Niwa would invariably go outside the restaurant to smoke a cigarette. Ayumu was able to get his hands on the food just as Niwa left the table. The owner of the restaurant told us.

Since he was only five years old, his mother would feed him fried rice. He eats for 10 or 15 minutes, that’s about it. While Ayumu was eating, Mr. Niwa was smoking and Ms. Ishii was paying the bill. At this point, I sensed that there was a possibility of abuse, but at the time I didn’t know the names of everyone, and I assumed that Ms. Kakitani was the mother, Mr. Niwa was the father, and Ayumu’s grandmother was Ms. Ishii.”

It was not until the third visit to the store that the owner learned of the relationship between the four.

The third time I came was at the beginning of September last year. Mr. Niwa started lecturing again at the tatami room, and Ayumu was sitting on the floor listening to him. Instead of stopping him, Mr. Kakitani even pretended to take a picture of Ayumu receiving the sermon with his smartphone, which I felt was unusual. When I tried to get some information out of him and said to Mr. Ishii on the way home, “Your grandson is very clever,” he said, “He is not my grandson,” which shocked me.

When the owner asked about the relationship between the four of them, Ishii replied that Niwa and he were married and that he and Kakimoto and his son lived together.

Kakimoto-san just stood silently beside Ishii-san. Intuitively, I thought that Mr. Kakimoto and his son were controlled by these two. It is unusual for them to treat other people’s children in this way, and furthermore, it made my blood boil to know that they live under the same roof. If it is like this outside, I wonder how Ayumu-kun is being treated inside the house. Just imagining it was hell. I was really scared.

I managed to talk to Ayumu-kun when I was paying the bill and got his name, age, and the day-care center he attended. I also reported the incident to the day-care center and the city office and told them what had happened inside the store. After that, I contacted the person from the city hall several times, but he said, ‘I’m in contact with them, but I can’t step in because I don’t have an SOS from the mother. So I was told, ‘Please keep a watchful eye on her next visit to the store.

Since then, however, Ayumu-kun has not appeared at the store. The day-care center also received a notice of withdrawal in mid-January of this year, when Ayumu was reportedly abandoned.

Kakimoto had been late coming to preschool since last year, and his rhythm of life had been slightly disrupted. She did not attend the Christmas party last December because ‘someone she lives with has a chronic illness and she is afraid of coronas. In January of this year, she tended to miss daycare, and we were concerned. However, Ms. Kakimoto offered to leave the preschool over the phone, saying, ‘I’ve decided to have my mother help me in Osaka.’ As much as the preschool was concerned, we thought it would be better if the grandmother could help us.

The last time Ayumu came to the preschool was on January 12. Mr. Kakimoto came to pick up his belongings on January 20. At that time, Ms. Kakimoto thanked him with a smile, saying, ‘Thank you for your help.

Ms. Kakimoto must have been a mother who cared for her child so much that when she left her husband, she tearfully said, ‘I have to protect Ayumu. The fact that she was taking pictures of her phone at the restaurant was not because she was enjoying herself, but because there was something that compelled her to do so.

Restaurant owners who had noticed signs of abuse also expressed their frustration.

The police came to the restaurant on March 3. They showed me a picture of Ms. Kakimoto and said, ‘We’ve lost track of this father and son. He was from the Investigation Department, so even though he didn’t give me any details, I could guess what was going on behind the scenes. I asked myself if all I could do for Ayumu was to report the incident, or if there was anything else I could have done. I don’t know what was right either. ……”

Ayumu’s desperate wishes were not answered, and he tragically lost his life. Was there nothing that could be done to save him? (Some titles in the text are omitted.)

  • Photo Shinji Hasuo

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