• Kyodo


A 26-year-old man was arrested Sunday on Sadogashima Island in Niigata Prefecture after allegedly kidnapping a 15-year-old girl and holding her for 11 days.

The suspect, an unemployed man named Jun Kondo, allegedly took the girl to his home in the town of Kanai on the island, where he lives with his parents, two days after abducting her Sept. 2 in Murakami, Niigata Prefecture.

He reportedly confined her in his home until his father discovered that she had been kidnapped and called police.

The father told officers, “My son has brought the girl who has been missing. I’ll take her out when my son goes out shopping, so please come to pick her up.”

She was freed Saturday night.

The police said Kondo had told his parents that the girl was a “friend.” The father found out the girl had been kidnapped after police went public with their investigation.

The victim was identified as Chisato Togashi, a student at a junior high school in Murakami.

Togashi had bruises on her knees when she was met by police officers outside the suspect’s house at around 8 p.m. Saturday. She was later taken to a hospital for examination.

Kondo allegedly struck Togashi from behind with his car while she was on her way home from school.

Togashi told investigators she was driven around in Niigata city for a couple of days before Kondo took her to Sadogashima by ferry.

The police went public with their investigation of the girl on Sept. 4 and the girl’s picture was shown on TV.

Detectives were dispatched to the suspect’s house Saturday night after receiving the call from Kondo’s father. They found the girl outside the home and detained the suspect when he returned home.

Officers said Kondo had lived with his 57-year-old father and an ailing, bedridden mother. He left home about two months ago, telling his parents that he went to Tokyo to look for employment, the police said.

The victim told investigators that she was struck from behind as she was walking home from school Sept. 2 and found herself in the back seat of a car when she came to.

Togashi had left school with a classmate at around 6:20 p.m. and was last seen when she parted with her friend at around 6:40 p.m. about 1.1 km from her home.

The daughter of a construction worker, Togashi lives with her parents and grandparents.

She was wearing a blue jersey and short blue pants when she went missing. She was wearing a T-shirt and short, striped pants when she was found by police.

When she met her parents at the Murakami City Office, she said, “I want to go to school soon and meet my friends,” her father Hiroji Togashi told a news conference.

“Since she went missing Sept. 2, I have only wished for her safe return,” the father said.

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