“Please tell the world that I’m a gentle man”
It’s always interesting (and slightly terrifying) exploring how other people think and act, and how they see the world. It is amazing how so many of these cases I look at, have people that somehow manage to justify not only killing, but also EATING people. This is one of those sadistic cases…
Tsutomu Miyazaki was born in 1962 in Japan. He was born premature, which left him with deformed hands, no wrist joints which meant he had to rotate his whole forearm in order to move his hand. This meant he was bullied, so grew up keeping to himself. He had outstanding grades and planned on studying English and becoming a teacher, yet at the last minute he went to college to become a photo technician. He did not have the closest relationship to his parents, having no desire to take on the family business. He believed they were more concerned with the material than the sentimental, and that he wasn’t “being listened to about his problems” as he claimed after his arrest. I read that his father was also having an incestuous relationship with one of his sisters. His younger sisters largely rejected him, and his only real support was his grandparent (I have read conflicting sources on whether it was his grandmother or grandfather). After the death of his grandparent in 1988 he became deeply depressed, and in an attempt to “consume something from him/her”, he ate some of their ashes. He was caught watching and filming his sister take a shower, and attacked her when she confronted him. When his mother learnt of this incident, he attacked her as well.
According to friends, he had displayed bizarre behaviour for years prior to the murder. Such as, taking photos of girls at sporting events. Some sites say that Tsutomu only spoke to young girls because he was intimidated by older girls, as he was self conscious about the size of his genitalia.
His murdering spree lasted from August 1988 to June 1989, and his victims were all little girls. The day after his 26th birthday, on August 22nd, 4 year old Mari Konno vanished while playing at her friend’s house. Presumably in the driveway or the garden. Tsutomu had led her into his car and abducted her, taken her to a wooded area and sat chatting to her for a while. Tragically (but obviously in this series), he murdered her. Some sources claimed he strangled her so hard that her eyes popped out, although I am not sure if this is physiologically possible… he engaged in sexual activity with her body and left her there, taking her clothes with him. He left her to decompose for an undisclosed amount of time, then later returned to remove her hands and feet (which were later found in his wardrobe) and put the rest of her body into a furnace. A few months later, her family received a box containing her ashes, some teeth, photos of the clothes she had been wearing, and a postcard where he had written “Mari. Cremated. Bones. Investigate. Prove.” Her father later went on television asking for her legs to be returned if they were not cremated, as she would not be able to walk in heaven.
A month later on October 3rd 1988 (“On October 3rd, he asked me what day it was”) he offered 7 year old Masami Yoshizawa a lift when she was walking along a rural road. He then repeated his process of killing her and removing her clothes. Apparently, she came round from being strangled when he was raping her, so he panicked and ran off, leaving her to die. Although the only person that would know if this was true is Tsutomu.
He became more forceful when on December 12 1988, he forced 4 year old Erika Namba into his car when she was walking home from her friend’s house. He took her clothes off her in his car and took pictures of her. After he had horrifically murdered her, he tied her hands and feet behind her back, covered her with a sheet and put her in the boot of his car. He drove her body to a car park and left her there, dumping her clothes in the woods nearby. Erika managed to scratch his face and make it bleed, after he had dumped her body he found two men waiting at his car, asking what he was doing and what had happened to him. He told them that his car had been stuck in the mud, and drove home. Her family also received a postcard that had words cut out of magazines, saying “Erika. Cold. Cough. Throat. Rest. Death.”
On June 6, 1989, Miyazaki convinced 5 year old Ayako Nomoto to allow him to take pictures of her. I couldn’t find where or how this happened. He coaxed her into his car and killed her in there. Again, he covered her with a sheet and put her in his boot. However, this time he took her body to his apartment and spent two days with it. Engaging in sexual activities, photographing and filming her. Inevitably, her body soon began to decompose, so Tsutomu dismembered her. He left her torso in a cemetary, her head near some hills nearby, and kept her hands. He slowly ate some of the hands and drank blood from them, hideous. God knows why he abandoned parts of her body, because he soon feared police would find them. So a couple of weeks later, he brought her abandoned remains back to his apartment and also put them in his wardrobe.
All parents reported having myserious phone calls after the disappearance of their daughters, the phone would ring and then no one would speak upon answer. If they didn’t pick up, he would ring for 20-30 minutes. This was almost certainly, Tsutomu.
Arrest and Trial:
The sources here are a bit vague. Tsutomu attempted to abduct sisters who were in the park with their families, however one escaped. He forced the other into his vehicle and was eventually found by the girls father whilst trying to take pictures of the other sisters genitalia. He was confronted by her father and fled, naked (why was he naked in the park). He had to return eventually to get his car, however the police were waiting for him after a call from the girl’s father. A search of his apartment was conducted, where police found 5763 videotapes. Some contained anime and slasher films, which the media later blamed for making him a murderer, over 500 were videos of his sisters in the shower, many were child pornography, and amongst them were tape recordings of the bodies of his victims. He was arrested and put on trial which began in 1990. Shockingly, at the time in Japan, it was illegal to show pubic hair in videos, yet child porn was NOT illegal. It was noted in several articles that he remained calm and collected throughout the duration of his trial, although he showed no remorse. His father refused to pay for his legal defence (I wouldn’t either if it was my son), and committed suicide in 1994 after enduring years of humiliation. Upon hearing this, Tsutomu said he felt “refreshed”. His mother continued to visit him every week and bring him comic books.
Throughout his trial, he often spoke completely nonsensically, blaming his actions on his alter ego “Rat Man”, claiming he forced him to kill. He drew many cartoons of “Rat Man” during the trial, and claimed that his alter ego convinced him that by killing these girls, he could bring his dead grandparent back to life. He described his murders as an “act of benevolence”. He was judged to be sane and held accountable for his actions by the Tokyo District Court, and sentenced to death in 1997. In both 2001 and 2006 his case was looked at again, and the death sentence remained. He was hanged on June 17th 2008, age 45.
A later child murderer, Kaoru Kobayashi described himself as “the next Tsutomu Miyazaki”. Tsotumo commented on this, saying “I won’t allow him to call himself ‘the second Tsutomu Miyazaki’ when he hasn’t even undergone a psychiatric examination.” Perhaps suggesting he believes he should also prove that he is sound of mind, yet also suggesting he is glad of the admiration I believe. Some believe that his suddenly rapid execution was due to his influence over other later killers.
He will forever be known as one of the worst serial killers in Japanese history. He is also called the “Otaku Murderer” which translates to the “Geek” killer.