Disability Japan Sagamihara

Sagamihara Care Home Massacre accused contradicts his own defense team’s ‘insanity argument’ in court

The alleged murderer in a 2016 massacre at a care home for mentally disabled people in eastern Japan contradicted his defense team's arguments, disputing the need to question his sanity during questioning on Friday. 

Written by Barrier Free Japan with extracts from Jiji Press & Kyodo News

January 24th 2020

YOKOHAMA – The alleged murderer in a 2016 massacre at a care home for mentally disabled people in eastern Japan contradicted his defense team’s arguments, disputing the need to question his sanity during questioning on Friday 24th January. 

During the eighth day of hearings of his trial at Yokohama District Court, Satoshi Uematsu, 30, said that he thinks it is wrong to contest his ability to bear criminal responsibility.

Uematsu said: “It is wrong for (the defense) to argue over my mental competency. I can take responsibility.”

The defense had asked the court to acquit him or reduce his sentence, claiming that he was in a state of insanity or diminished capacity during the attack at the now-defunct Tsukui Yamayuri-en, where Uematsu was a former worker.

Uematsu said he “began to believe there was no need” for severely disabled people who cannot communicate with others when he started working at the care home.

Uematsu said he decided that such people should be euthanized after he was involuntarily hospitalized some five months before the incident.

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