ストーカー殺人 見過ごせない警察の連携不足

The Yomiuri Shimbun October 13, 2013
Lack of police cooperation partly to blame for stalking-murder case
ストーカー殺人 見過ごせない警察の連携不足(10月12日付・読売社説)

Another outrageous stalking-murder has occurred.

Why wasn’t such a terrible incident prevented? Police must thoroughly investigate their handling of the case.

A third-year female student at a private high school in Mitaka, Tokyo, was stabbed to death Tuesday and a 21-year-old Kyoto man she had previously dated was arrested later in the day.

The girl had refused to see him any longer. She had rejected his mobile phone calls and e-mails since June. But after the man appeared in the vicinity of her home early this month, her homeroom teacher called Suginami Police Station of the Metropolitan Police Department, which is near her school, to request countermeasures on Oct. 4.

The problem was that the station failed to adequately listen. Its response was simply to recommend that the teacher contact the Mitaka Police Station, which has jurisdiction over the area where the girl lived. The girl and her parents visited the Mitaka station four days later—and she was killed later the same day.

Suginami Police Station displayed a lack of concern for a case that happened outside its jurisdiction. If it had communicated with Mitaka Police Station immediately, the outcome could have been different.

A question also arises as to whether the Mitaka station responded adequately. Just one police officer handled the case for half a day from when the girl visited until the time of her murder.

If the station had carefully arranged safety measures such as patrolling around her home, vigilant to the fact that stalker cases tend to involve abrupt turns and twists, perhaps the murder could have been prevented.

Lessons not learned

In a stalker case two years ago in Nagasaki Prefecture, two family members of the stalking victim were killed even after help was sought from the Chiba, Nagasaki and Mie prefectural police, all of whom failed to share information on the case.

Based on that bitter experience, in which a response was delayed due to the involvement of police from different jurisdictions, the National Police Agency directed police stations nationwide to take quick action and thorough measures to protect stalking victims who seek help.

A revision to the Anti-Stalker Law was enforced on Oct. 3, enabling police and public safety commissions from outside a victim’s area of residence to issue warnings and stay-away orders to a suspected stalker.

But the measures devised from lessons learned from the Nagasaki incident failed to meet their purpose this time. On the contrary, even two police stations that were both in Tokyo failed to communicate with each other this time.

The MPD must profoundly consider the magnitude of the consequences.

The number of stalking victims has soared. Nearly 20,000 stalking cases were confirmed by police last year alone. Dealing with stalkers is an increasingly important police duty.

Most of the offenders are said to stop stalking and other acts following police intervention.

What is the best way to contact offenders and protect victims? We suggest nationwide police organizations comprehensively study past cases to devise stalking countermeasures.

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, Oct. 12, 2013)
(2013年10月12日01時39分 読売新聞)

by kiyoshimat | 2013-10-14 08:07 | 英字新聞

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