National / Crime & Legal

Japanese mother arrested for allegedly leaving 8-month-old daughter in freezing bathroom

Kyodo

A young mother in Soka, Saitama Prefecture, was arrested Monday for allegedly causing her 8-month-old daughter to suffer frostbite after leaving her in a freezing bathroom this past winter.

Police suspect Asuka Kamikubo placed the baby in a plastic bag wearing just a diaper and with only her head exposed before leaving her unattended in the bathroom of their home for about 20 hours, starting at around 5 p.m. Jan. 13.

They suspect the girl suffered daily abuse at the hands of her 24-year-old mother. The baby was reportedly discovered to have some 20 bone fractures.

“I had difficulty taking care of the child and could not develop affection for my daughter,” Kamikubo was quoted as telling the police while allegedly admitting to the charge of neglect resulting in injury.

The daughter suffered frostbite to her feet that required six months to heal.

Kamikubo also has a 2-year-old son.

The girl’s plight became apparent when Kamikubo and the children visited her mother’s home in Tokyo on Jan. 15. The grandmother noticed the baby’s ailments and called an ambulance.

The case was reported to a child consultation center by the hospital. The center, part of the department responsible for child welfare in the prefecture, took the girl into protective custody after she received treatment, the police said.

There was no trace of abuse on the boy’s body, they said.