FUKUOKA (TR) – On Monday, Fukuoka Prefectural Police began searching for a man after the corpse of his father and a second one, likely belonging to his mother, were found inside a refrigerator in their residence in Fukuoka City.
Based on the investigation to this point, police are treating the case as abandoning a corpse, reports the Asahi Shimbun (June 30).
In the latest development, police have revealed that the man, aged in his 50s, likely fled the house in Nishi Ward by bicycle.
On Monday night, officers working off a tip entered the residence and found the bodies inside the glass-door industrial refrigerator. The man was not present.
Police have since confirmed that one of the bodies is that of the man’s father, 88-year-old Hirokazu Matsumoto. The identity of the second body is not known, but it is believed to be that of his wife, 87-year-old Makie.
The results of autopsies conducted on the bodies did not reveal the causes of death. But both persons are believed to have died around June 21, police said.
A witness told police that they saw Makie out shopping with the man on June 20.
“Dropped out of contact”
Earlier on Monday, a relative contacted police after the occupants of the residence had “dropped out of contact” for an extended period.
The residence was once a liquor shop. When police arrived, the refrigerator had been taped shut and its power turned off. As well, there were traces of something having been dragged on the floor near the refrigerator, police said.
Investigators also noticed that a bicycle was missing, leading them to conclude that the man, who does not possess a driver’s license, pedaled from the scene.
“Like a hikikomori”
The residence is in a neighborhood about 1 kilometer from Imajuku Station. About 10 years ago, Hirokazu served as the head of the neighborhood association.
One neighbor told Nippon News Network (June 29) that Makie had suffered “something like a stroke,” which made it difficult for her to go out.
Another neighbor said the man never said much. “He was like a hikikomori,” the neighbor said in using the term for a person who lives a shut-in existence.