4-year-old boy beaten to death by mother's boyfriend

TOKYO —

Police have arrested a 27-year-old man for fatally beating the 4-year-old son of his girlfriend at their apartment in Tokyo.

According to police, the suspect, identified as Ryuji Kawabe, was arrested for assault by police on Friday after allegedly punching the boy, Hayato Narita, in the face, TBS reported. The boy’s 22-year-old mother called an ambulance on Friday night after he fell unconscious. He was taken to hospital where he was later pronounced dead.

On Saturday, police upgraded the charge against Kawabe to one of manslaughter.

During questioning, Kawabe was quoted by police as admitting that he hit the boy in the head and stomach because he wouldn’t eat his lunch, according to TBS.

The boy’s mother told police she was out at the time of the beating.

Japan Today

  • 2

    DoLittleBeLate

    "Wouldn't eat his lunch"?

    The pile of excuses that increasing number of Japanese think as fitting for a DIY death penalty seem to be endless.

  • 5

    Elbuda Mexicano

    This is just so WRONG!! Poor little boy RIP. Idiot live in boyfriend, Ryuji Kawabe BURN IN HELL for ALL OF ETERNITY amen!

  • 2

    Gurukun

    Kawabe was quoted by police as admitting that he hit the boy in the head and stomach because he wouldn’t eat his lunch

    Oh, yeah....that would definitely put me in the mood to eat my lunch. Hit me some more and maybe I would eat the dessert too. What a monster! Did he Kawabe eat his lunch today? Maybe I should go make him eat it.

  • 3

    Greapper1

    Getting punched in the face and stomach always makes me hungry....

  • 2

    tmarie

    It just wouldn't be JT without news of some adult being the bring strong adult and kicking the crap or killing a kid, would it? Poor thing. I hope this man rots in prison. I'm wondering if there is a history of violence in the relationship and if there is, why on earth did the mom leave her kid with him?

    Japan really needs to start with parenting classes in the school system here. She would have been 18 when she had the baby. Not exactly stellar thinking...

  • 1

    rmistric

    Terrible sad story. Poor little boy. Hope they throw the book at this guy.

    GurukunFEB. 27, 2012 - 01:27PM JST Did he Kawabe eat his lunch today? Maybe I should go make him eat it.

    I think you should. You go for it. I'm sure you'll be able to teach this Kawabe dude a lesson he'll never forget. That would definitely be a story I'd like to read on JT.

  • 8

    Disillusioned

    Oh, no! Not another one! It is the same scenario over and over again! The mother's BF beats or abuses her kid. I am divorced with kids and I am so afraid for my kids as to what kind of nutcase my ex will attach herself to.

  • 9

    SpanishEyez37

    Mom doesn't get a free pass either. I'm sure there were some signs of abuse way before this,but she chose to ignore because God knows she needs a man to make her life complete.

    The whole thing makes me sick to my stomach.

  • 3

    Mike_Fagg

    DisillusionedFEB. 27, 2012 - 02:08PM JST Oh, no! Not another one! It is the same scenario over and over again! The mother's BF beats or abuses her kid. I am divorced with kids and I am so afraid for my kids as to what kind of nutcase my ex will attach herself to.

    Crazy stuff. But it's not always a the mother's BF doing the abusing. Sometimes it's the mother herself.

    I used to work with this guy who was married to a Japanese women. One night this dude says he comes home and sees that his daughter somehow has a pretty bad black eye. So, he asks her what happened. Turns out that his wife lost her temper and whacked the kid really hard in the face because the girl did move quickly enough for her or something. Smashed her head into a table. Talk about being mentally unstable.

  • 2

    NeoJamal

    The bastard has no love for someone else's kid and yet, hooks up with some woman with a kid. Whatever fate that awaits a manslaughter conviction is too good for him. I hope the guards have the decency to teach him how that kid felt.

  • 2

    SpanishEyez37

    @Mike Please tell me he divorced her and got custody of the child.

  • 2

    tokyokawasaki

    POS deserves a life sentence with hard manual labor in a very cold place....

  • 4

    buggerlugs

    Manslaughter!! This sickens me and cheapens this poor boys life. it is blatant MURDER! A grown man, no matter how inadequate, punching a 4 year old in the stomach and head/face is attempted murder!! RIP little one. You'll be missed.

  • 3

    ExportExpert

    All too common event, young solo mother shacks up with some drop kick who decides he doesnt like the girls kid coz it makes him jealous of her former boyfriend, so beats the kid to death as being a representative figure of the former x who the drop kick is jealous of. What a friggin loser, hope he finds out about tough guys in the slammer.

    Word of advise to young solo mothers, becareful who you hook up with as the freak you are about to jump in the sack with could all too easily end up killing your kids.

  • 1

    Dennis Bauer

    why does this make me think of male lions? when they take over, the first thing they do is kill the cubs, that aside he needs to do time!

  • 2

    LoveNot

    another day, one more kid killed. How sad...

  • 4

    WilliB

    Alas, a familiar story. Why do women up up with such "boyfriends"? The charge should be murder, not manslaughter.

  • 5

    wontond

    We read lots of stories like this, where a cowardly adult kills a child that's close them, but I can't recall many stories about their sentencing. I'd like to know what sort of punishment is handed down to scum like this.

  • 2

    sensei258

    To be found guilty of murder, they'd have to prove he intended to kill. Instead, he gets manslaughter for "accidentally" killing the boy while beating him. Sad.

  • 2

    tmarie

    Word of advise to young solo mothers, becareful who you hook up with as the freak you are about to jump in the sack with could all too easily end up killing your kids.

    How about, you had a kid so they come first and you can forget about dating for a few years until you sort yourself out and can look after your kid and yourself? I mean, is that really so far fetched? It seems to be when it comes to unwed young moms - here and "home".

  • -1

    my2sense

    Watch them. Watch them in public. The young parents (you know the ones)... It is quite amazing what you see. I still get the freak look when I hug my kid around them. And for the post that said "strong".. not sure about that... AKB it baby!

  • 2

    ExportExpert

    tmarie, the point i made was for solo moms to BECAREFUL WHO THEY HOOK UP WITH not dont hook up with anyone. Comprehension please.

  • 1

    tmarie

    And my point is that they shouldn't be hooking up until they have their lives in order and sorry, as a 22 year old unmarried mom, you don't have your life in order. Comprehension please!

  • 2

    yasukuni

    Shouldn't be necessary, but we obviously need to have some kind of time in schools where kids are taught the stuff that shouldn't need to be taught - don't punch kids in the face, don't beat up old people etc. Sad world.

  • 0

    ExportExpert

    tmarie ok, i read it with an attitude and gleaned a different meaning from it so now comprehendo shimasu . :))

  • 0

    fidaruzki

    During questioning, Kawabe was quoted by police as admitting that he hit the boy in the head and stomach because he wouldn’t eat his lunch, according to TBS.

    yeah right. I hope the prison guard would do the same to him.

    tmarie, yeah I my opinion is the same. the mother (in fact every single mother) should make it priority when it comes to the well being of their child. if they can't live without a man, please just put up the child for adoption or something.

  • 0

    KariHaruka

    Poor little boy :( I hope this sicko gets a very harsh and long sentence!

    and again I see people putting some of the blame on the mother. She's young and you think she doesn't have the right to meet someone new? This man might not of shown any signs of being violent till now. In a lot of abuse cases the partner starts of being all loving before eventually showing their true colours.

  • -3

    NetNinja

    I see the mother as the worst one in every single case like this. Children raising children. She failed in one relationship already but women just don't see themselves as the common denominator in their relationships.

    Furthermore, mothers don't show as much care to boys as they do girls. She left this child unprotected with her sefure. While she was out running the streets she lost her child.

    The cycle won't end there. She'll blame this guy and focus all her hate on men in general.

    It common sense you know. You never leave the chicken and the fox together.

  • 0

    timtak

    @tmarie

    It just wouldn't be JT without news of some adult being the bring strong adult and kicking the crap or killing a kid, would it No, you are right it wouldn't. Is that because there are more killilngs of children by adults in Japan, or because JT chooses to report such events? If I were to tell you the data about the former, my post would be deleted. Maybe this one will too.

  • 1

    Jessica Marie Sato

    eye twitches

  • -3

    tmarie

    **the mother (in fact every single mother) should make it priority when it comes to the well being of their child. **

    I would go one step further and say EVERY mother should make their kids their priority!

    EE, no worries! ;)

    and again I see people putting some of the blame on the mother. She's young and you think she doesn't have the right to meet someone new? This man might not of shown any signs of being violent till now. In a lot of abuse cases the partner starts of being all loving before eventually showing their true colours. Of course blame goes to the mother. She's 22 with a four year old, a single mother in a country that frowns on single mothers. Obviously isn't the sharpest tack in the box. SHE brought that man into her life, SHE left HER kid with him. The kid isn't his, he's 25 with probably very little experience with kids and shouldn't be put in the position of daddy.

    Her "right" to meet someone? What about this kid's right to live? At 22, single, small child the last thing ANYONE should be thinking about is finding someone. They need to look after their child. Common sense, is it not? Sadly, common sense isn't so common.

    Eventually show their true colours? Indeed. I don't think they start hitting their Gfs from day one. Like I said, I wonder if there is a history of abuse.

    Kids having kids... They need parenting classes at school here. They need to know that kids aren't little dolls you can dress up and parade around. The whole "garumama" thing needs to stop being featured on TV and promoted as cool.

  • 1

    Fadamor

    NOTE: I'm not defending the boyfriend's actions one bit. He deserves every minute of any jail time awarded him for manslaughter up to and including the maximum.

    That said:

    The pile of excuses that increasing number of Japanese think as fitting for a DIY death penalty seem to be endless.

    I seriously doubt when he was punching the child that he expected to be carrying out a death sentence. Most likely it was how he remembered being raised, but mis-remembered at what age he was raised like that. A 10-year-old might be able to take a punch to the face by an adult and survive, but a 4-year-old... the head is too small and the mass of the fist and arm too great.

  • 0

    midnull

    I swear to god, everytime I see japanese news it's of somebody killing a kid!

  • 0

    techall

    I do not believe in corporal punishment to toddlers, but in the extreme, a slap to the seat of the pants should be a far a anyone should even consider. A grown man punching (repeatedly) a 4 year old and not expecting it to do any serious damage is insane.

  • 1

    Disillusioned

    techall - I do not believe in corporal punishment to toddlers, but in the extreme, a slap to the seat of the pants should be a far a anyone should even consider.

    No, it shouldn't be! Raising a hand to a child as a form of discipline just shows a serious weakness in the parents' ability to control themselves! It has nothing to do with controlling kids! I have four kids and four grandkids. Nobody is ever 'smacked' in my family! - It is explained very easily. how do you want your kids to think of you? Do you want to be the over-ruling tyrant that would lash out and belt them for being a kid? Or, do you want to be the person they look up to for inspiration and comfort? Don't hit your kids people! Try loving them instead. It works a lot better!

  • 0

    MeanRingo

    Manslaughter is too light. It should at least be second degree murder if there is such a thing in Japan. I mean really, if you can't fathom this as the outcome of viciously beating a 4-year-old boy, then you are a halfwit.

    On a lighter note, perhaps AKB48 can come up with some sort of "Use protection and save child rearing for when you are ready" campaign. I guess that would go against their whole "Have a baby with an AKB member of your choice, only on the internet, for fun, not in real life, you perve!" campaign.

  • 2

    MeanRingo

    And on one final note, in my country, when a child is killed by a parent or guardian, it is a shocking story that prompts a great deal of thought and introspection about how delicate life is, and how cruel some people can be. But it doesn't happen that often. This is such common fare in Japan. I would think that week in, week out, this kind of news would prompt some sort of national debate on educating parents. But no, there is nothing. Only a shrug of the shoulders and a zannen. Be better Japan. Be better.

  • 1

    yasukuni

    "She's young and you think she doesn't have the right to meet someone new? "

    She has the right, but when you have kids you have to be super careful who let into your family. That would go for a single father too. (There are women out there who find it hard to love a child that isn't their own)

    "This man might not of shown any signs of being violent till now. In a lot of abuse cases the partner starts of being all loving before eventually showing their true colors."

    All men who want sex start out all loving... So the answer is to too wait longer until you know what a person's true colors are. There are so many cases of kids being abused by the mother's boyfriends. Women have got to get better at judging character. The irony is people talk about women's intuition all the time....Well, not everyone seems to have it, or some ignore it.

    This story is repeated all the time. Maybe women have to learn that while they do have the right to a man in their life, they'd be better without one. And their kids would be too.

  • 0

    Mirai Hayashi

    hit the boy in the head and stomach because he wouldn’t eat his lunch

    Why is this manslaughter? what do you need to do to get a proper murder wrap in this country???

  • -1

    tmarie

    Women have got to get better at judging character. The irony is people talk about women's intuition all the time....Well, not everyone seems to have it, or some ignore it.

    I agree with everything you wrote BUT this. This isn't just a "women's" problem. How many men end up with crazies as well? How many men marry women who become abusive to them and to their kids? Your statement makes it seem like only women are the weak and stupid ones when in fact, in this case, the man was the weak and stupid one. How about, "People have got to get better at judging character"?

    Where is this boy's real father? Did he have contact with the kid? Was he allowed to have contact? Did he pay child support?

  • 0

    uchina58

    Very sad. I believe the retarded Boyfriend was a terrible cook. So now its time to learn a lesson behind the bars. RIP little fellow

  • -1

    Franchesca Miyara Yang

    DisillusionedFEB. 28, 2012 - 02:48AM JST

    techall - I do not believe in corporal punishment to toddlers, but in the extreme, a slap to the seat of the pants should be a far a anyone should even consider.

    No, it shouldn't be! Raising a hand to a child as a form of discipline just shows a serious weakness in the parents' ability to control themselves! It has nothing to do with controlling kids! I have four kids and four grandkids. Nobody is ever 'smacked' in my family! - It is explained very easily. how do you want your kids to think of you? Do you want to be the over-ruling tyrant that would lash out and belt them for being a kid? Or, do you want to be the person they look up to for inspiration and comfort? Don't hit your kids people! Try loving them instead. It works a lot better!

    Best post I've ever read since I signed up in this rundown forum. That said, I must admit that even though my parents were indeed physically abusive to me, I have NEVER ever raise my hand to my children. No need to. Discipline comes in many other better and effective ways. I mostly use the "favorites suspension" method. I got a call from school that there was a fight ?(after personal verification of course!) No playing outside for a week or No dessert after dinner or No TV or No PC games after homework or perhaps No Phone calls from friends (Ouch!). You see? There's plenty of ways to get your children's attention. No need to act like a neanderthal and beat them. Only the WEAK resort to physical punishment.

  • 0

    Moderator

    Please refrain from posting rants like this.

  • 0

    smithinjapan

    That's two so far today. Looks like this week will top last week for 'crazy' murders.

    RIP to the boy -- he most certainly did not deserve the likes of mom's new boyfriend. I wonder how said boyfriend is going to deal with his frustrations in prison?

  • 0

    Fadamor

    Why is this manslaughter? what do you need to do to get a proper murder wrap in this country???

    man·slaugh·ter   /ˈmænˌslɔtər/ [man-slaw-ter]

    noun

    1. Law . the unlawful killing of a human being without malice aforethought.

    2. the killing of a human being by another; homicide.

    All catagories of murder are some form of manslaughter per definition 2. However, the murder catagories have to prove intent to kill. If you can't prove intent, then manslaughter is the appropriate charge. The defense lawyers would have a field day with any attempt to prove intent. The guy had everything to lose if he intended to kill the kid, not the least of which would be his girlfriend.

  • 0

    fidaruzki

    Nobody would just woke up in the morning and say to oneself, "I want to kill/punch someone" .. Yup, people do get grouchy at times, (woke up on the wrong side of the bed?), but the most they would just shout if they gets annoyed. To punch a toddler on his/her face, most of the time resulted from abusive behaviour. And abusers tend to be abusive towards adults too. So the mother must have had been a punching bag too.

  • -1

    Fadamor

    To punch a toddler on his/her face,

    Let's not make the victim younger than he was. "Toddlers" usually are no longer toddling by age 3.

  • 0

    Al Stewart

    A REAL MAN we got here. In prison someone should punch him in the stomach and face before every meal. The loser.

  • 0

    palanteboricua

    EAT YOUR FOOD OR I'LL BEAT THE LIVING-LIFE OUT OF YOU...!??? Sounds familiar to anyone....! But this LOSER meant it!! To much trouble for him to bother feeding the poor boy...RIP little one!!

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