Osaka school massacre
|Osaka school massacre|
|Location||Ikeda, Osaka, Japan|
|Date||June 8, 2001|
|Mass murder, stabbing|
The Osaka school massacre was a school stabbing that occurred on June 8, 2001, at the Ikeda Elementary School, an elite primary school affiliated with Osaka Kyoiku University in Osaka Prefecture, Japan.
On June 8, 2001, at 10:15 a.m. local time, 37-year-old former janitor Mamoru Takuma entered the school armed with a kitchen knife and began stabbing school children and teachers. He killed eight children, mostly aged seven and eight, and seriously wounded thirteen other children and two teachers.
The attack was the fifth largest mass murder, along with the Matsumoto incident, in recent Japanese history, exceeded in fatalities only by the Tokyo subway sarin attack, the Osaka movie theater fire, the Sagamihara stabbings, and the Myojo 56 building fire. The incident set itself apart, however, by the age of the victims, its venue (a school), and the perpetrator's history of mental illness. Because of these factors, the attack raised questions about Japan's social policies for dealing with mental illness, the rights of victims and criminals, and the accessibility and security of Japanese schools.
After the attack, Yoshio Yamane, the principal administrator of the school, announced that it would bring in a security guard, an at-the-time unheard-of practice at Japanese schools. 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 the girl had won, talking about how she respected and wanted to be like Hikaru), renaming it "Final Distance".
All of the students were female second-graders except for one first-grade boy.
- 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 boy to die in the attack)
- Hana Tsukamoto (塚本 花菜 Tsukamoto Hana)
- Rena Yamashita (山下 玲奈 Yamashita Rena)
- "At least eight dead in Osaka school rampage" June 8, 2001. cnn.com
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- Fox News:Fire at Japanese Adult Video Theater Kills 15
- Human Rights in Japan - Extrajudicial, Summary or Arbitrary Executions Archived 2008-06-21 at the Wayback Machine.
- Watts, Jonathan (July 2001). "Japan reviews policy on mental illness and crime" (fee required). The Lancet. 358 (9278): 305. doi:10.1016/S0140-6736(01)05527-1. PMID 11498227.
- "Knife-Wielding Man Kills 8 Children at Japanese School." The New York Times. 2.