National / Crime & Legal

Tokyo police officer referred to prosecutors over car crash that left boy, 4, dead

Kyodo

A Tokyo policeman was referred to prosecutors Tuesday over the death of a 4-year-old boy after he was hit by the officer’s patrol car in August.

Police added a request for the indictment of the 51-year-old male sergeant at a Shinjuku police station on suspicion of negligent driving resulting in death.

The officer was allegedly rushing back to metropolitan police headquarters on Aug. 18 when the police car he was driving struck the boy on a crossing in Tokyo’s Chiyoda Ward. The boy died about a month later.

A police vehicle is required to slow down at an intersection even when it is traveling in an emergency, but the car was traveling at a speed of 40 to 50 kilometers per hour at the time, according to the police.

The officer said he sped up after seeing other pedestrians stop, and he did not realize the boy was there until hitting him, they said.

“I am really sorry for taking the life of the child,” he was quoted as saying.