OSAKA (TR) – A married couple was arrested on Sunday for allegedly violently shaking their baby son, causing injuries consistent with abusive head trauma that will take a year of recovery.
Osaka prefectural police arrested Fuminori Kariyazono, 27, and Mikae Kariyazono, 28, on bodily injury charges for shaking their 3-month-old baby son causing bleeding in his brain and behind the eye at their residence in Makita, Takatsuki City, between the evening of March 5 and March 6, the Asahi Shimbun reports (July 10).
Police said the couple, which also has a 1-year-old son, denied the charges.
“I shook him, but his neck was getting sturdier so I thought he was fine,” Fuminori told police. “We were just playing.”
Mikae said she saw her husband “shaking him, but I thought they were playing.”
An investigation is under way to determine whether the couple was regularly abusing the baby after doctors also found trace evidence of skull fractures in March.
“I was raising him into the air in March when I accidentally dropped him onto the tatami floor,” Fuminori was quoted as telling police by the Sankei Shimbun.
Mom looked the other way?
Fuminori is charged with inflicting serious injuries like acute subdural hematoma by violently shaking his youngest son in March. Mikae was reportedly in the room but chose to look the other way.
The Kariyazonos took their youngest son to a hospital a few days later because he was limp. The hospital became suspicious after multiple screenings revealed the baby was suffering from chronic subdural hematoma and trace evidence of skull fractures that were inflicted when he was 1-2 months old.
The hospital brought its findings to the Suita child consultation center, which alerted police of possible abuse on March 16.
A welfare facility has taken the 1-year-old son and his baby into custody, according to Kyodo News.
A neighbor told Fuji News Network they remember Mikae telling them she “just got out of the hospital” after giving birth.
“The husband seemed to be an all-smiles guy,” the neighbor said. “The wife was expressionless.”
Subdural hematoma is a deadly brain injury involving a clot of blood that forms between the brain and its outer covering, typically caused by veins that rupture on the surface from sudden blows or rapid shaking. A study by the Japan Neurosurgical Society says the mortality rate stands at 65 percent.