CHIBA (TR) – Chiba Prefectural Police have arrested a 41-year-old man who is suspected of regularly abusing his 10-year-old daughter prior to her death at their residence in Noda City last week, reports Jiji Press (Jan. 26).
At around 11:10 p.m. on January 24, Yuichiro Kurihara called emergency services to report that Mia, a fourth-year elementary school student, was not breathing.
Police and emergency services personnel arriving at the residence, located in the Yamazaki area, confirmed her dead after finding her body in the bathroom.
During questioning, Kurihara, who has been accused of inflicting injury, told the Noda Police Station that he poured cold water over the girl and used both hands to grab her near her neck.
Police are now investigating whether the assault directly caused the death of the girl, with the results of an autopsy being used to determine cause of death.
“I did not mean to get hurt [her] through discipline,” the suspect was quoted by police. “Because she did not do what I told her, I got angry and pulled her hair.”
According to police, Kurihara’s wife, 31, and other daughter, 1, also lives in the residence.
An examination of the body of Mia revealed red marks on several locations of her scalp, leading police to believe that she was regularly abused.
After the incident, police learned that Mia was temporarily taken into protective custody after she complained of abuse by her father in 2017. At the time, she was attending a different elementary school in Noda.
Police are now questioning staff members at the consultation center to learn why Mia was allowed to return home.