Osaka school massacre

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Coordinates: 34°49′15.16″N 135°26′22.28″E / 34.8208778°N 135.4395222°E / 34.8208778; 135.4395222

Osaka school massacre
Location Ikeda, Osaka, Japan
Date June 8, 2001
Attack type
Mass murder, stabbing
Weapons Kitchen knife
Deaths 8[1]
Non-fatal injuries
Perpetrator Mamoru Takuma

The Osaka school massacre took place on June 8, 2001, at Ikeda Elementary School, an elite primary school affiliated with Osaka Kyoiku University in Osaka Prefecture, Japan.

The attack[edit]

At 10:15 that morning, 37-year-old former janitor Mamoru Takuma entered the school armed with a kitchen knife and began stabbing numerous school children and teachers. He killed eight children, mostly between the ages of seven and eight, and seriously wounded thirteen other children and two teachers.[2]


Takuma was diagnosed with paranoid personality disorder.[3][4] He was later convicted and sentenced to death by hanging. The sentence was carried out on September 14, 2004.[5]

The attack was the 5th largest mass murder, along with the Matsumoto incident, in recent Japanese history, all of which were exceeded only by the fatalities caused in the Tokyo subway sarin attack, the Osaka movie theater fire,[6] the Sagamihara stabbings, and the Myojo 56 building fire. This incident, however, was set apart by the young age of the victims, by its occurrence at a school, and by the murderer's history of mental illness.[5] Because of these factors, the attack raised questions about Japan's social policies regarding the treatment of mental illness, the rights of victims and criminals, and the accessibility and security of Japanese schools.[7][8]

After the attack, Yoshio Yamane, the principal administrator of the school, announced that it would receive a security guard, an at-the-time unheard-of feature in Japanese schools.[5] Additionally, J-pop artist Hikaru Utada rearranged her song "Distance" in honor of Rena Yamashita, one of the murdered schoolgirls (because of an essay contest she had won, talking about how she respected and wanted to become like Hikaru), renaming it "Final Distance".


The boy was in the first year and the girls were in the second year.[9]

  • Yuki Hongo (本郷 優希 Hongō Yūki)
  • Mayuko Isaka (猪阪 真宥子 Isaka Mayuko)
  • Yuka Kiso (木曽 友香 Kiso Yūka)
  • Ayano Moriwaki (森脇 綾乃 Moriwaki Ayano)
  • Maki Sakai (酒井 麻希 Sakai Maki)
  • Takahiro Totsuka (戸塚 健大 Totsuka Takahiro) (the only male student to die in the attack)[5]
  • Hana Tsukamoto (塚本 花菜 Tsukamoto Hana)
  • Rena Yamashita (山下 玲奈 Yamashita Rena)

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "At least eight dead in Osaka school rampage" June 8, 2001.
  2. ^ Struck, Doug (June 9, 2001). "School Stabbings Diminish Japan's Feelings of Safety". The Washington Post. Archived from the original on June 10, 2001.  Also published online as "Diminished sense of safety in Japan".
  3. ^ "Suspect may suffer from personality disorder". The Japan Times. Retrieved June 26, 2017. 
  4. ^ "Osaka massacre suspect Takuma not schizophrenic: psychiatrist". Kyodo News. March 28, 2002. Retrieved June 26, 2017. 
  5. ^ a b c d "Japan mourns school victims." CNN. June 10, 2001. Retrieved on February 5, 2010.
  6. ^ Fox News:Fire at Japanese Adult Video Theater Kills 15
  7. ^ Human Rights in Japan - Extrajudicial, Summary or Arbitrary Executions
  8. ^ Watts, Jonathan (July 2001). "Japan reviews policy on mental illness and crime" (fee required). The Lancet. 358 (9278): 305. PMID 11498227. doi:10.1016/S0140-6736(01)05527-1. Retrieved 2008-06-09. 
  9. ^ "Knife-Wielding Man Kills 8 Children at Japanese School." The New York Times. 2.

External links[edit]