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Bodies of 5 found in Hiratsuka apartment, woman arrested+
[May 03, 2006]

Bodies of 5 found in Hiratsuka apartment, woman arrested+

(Japan Economic Newswire Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge)YOKOHAMA, May 3_(Kyodo) _ The bodies of five people were found in an apartment room in Hiratsuka, Kanagawa Prefecture, leading to the arrest of a 54-year-old woman on suspicion of killing her daughter, police said Wednesday.

The five are believed to be Rikako Okamoto, 19, the daughter of the suspect, Chizuko Okamoto, along with Minehiro Yamauchi, 35, Rikako's half brother, and three others -- a 120-centimeter-tall boy and two newborn babies, the police said.

Okamoto is suspected of strangling Rikako in the apartment room on Oct. 12 last year. She was quoted as telling investigators she had intended to kill herself, too.


The incident came to light when the owner of the apartment visited the room on Monday and found the corpse of Rikako on her bed and that of Yamauchi, who had been hanged.

The police sought the whereabouts of Okamoto after finding a memo indicating she had killed her daughter. She was detained late Tuesday evening near her apartment.

She told the investigators she had left the apartment where the bodies were found around March and that Yamauchi was still alive at that time, according to the police.

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