NARA (TR) – In announcing the filing of a criminal complaint, a medical expert said on Tuesday that a doctor in custody for malpractice was beaten to death by officers from Nara Prefectural Police six years ago, reports Nippon News Network (Nov. 15).
Koji Dewa, an expert in forensic medicine at Iwate Medical University, said at a press conference that the cause of death of doctor Yasuhiko Tsukamoto, 54, was “assault by police officers” during the physician’s incarceration in February of 2010.
While in custody, Tsukamoto is believed to have been beaten in the head, chest and legs by officers from the Sakurai Police Station.
“There was a wide range of subcutaneous bleeding in the lower limbs thought to have been caused by a beating,” Dewa said, according to the Sankei Shimbun (Nov. 15).
Dewa lodged the criminal complaint on behalf of Tsukamoto’s family against unnamed members of Nara police for lethal assault by a civil servant.
In June of 2006, Tsukamoto conducted a surgical procedure on a 51-year-old male patient suffering from liver cancer at Yamamoto Hospital in Yamatokoriyama City, Nara. During the procedure, a vein in the liver was damaged, causing substantial bleeding. The patient subsequently died due to loss of blood.
Nara police arrested Tsukamoto for professional negligence resulting in death in February of 2010. Between February 14 and 24, he is believed to have been beaten by police.
On February 25, he was found collapsed in his detention cell. He was later confirmed dead at a nearby hospital. The cause of death was originally determined to have been an acute myocardial infarction, or a heart attack.
“There was absolutely no violence initiated by interrogating officers during the detention,” a representative of the Nara Prefectural Police is quoted.