The Tragic Death of a 21-year-old by Her Stalker
With the #metoo movement and the recent shift in finally believing women’s stories of physical or sexual abuse, luckily there is less victim-blaming happening in the media. Unfortunately, this story is about a 21-year-old girl named Shiori Ino, who was not only stalked and eventually murdered but was also blamed for the crime. The police of Saitama Japan where the crime happened covered up the details and blamed the victim. Then the media ran with the fake news and slandered Shiori’s character.
Shiori’s only crime was trying to get away from the stalker who was harassing her, her family, and her friends. She, along with her family, went to the police repeatedly with evidence and information about the stalker, his threats, and the trouble he was causing. The police turned a blind eye and instead told her to continue seeing the man.
This is the story of an innocent and beautiful young university student who caught the wrong guy’s attention and because no one would help her, lost her life.
On January 6, 1999, Shiori Ino, who was 21 years old, was with her friend in Omiya Station, Saitama, Japan. They were at a Japanese arcade center that Japanese people refer to as a game center. The game center had video games, slot machines, and picture booths that high school girls line up to take cute pictures of themselves.
Shiori and her friend were trying to put coins into the photo booth machine but it wasn’t working. That is when a 26-year-old man named Kazuhito Komatsu spotted her. He immediately asked her if he could help and started flirting with her. He then invited Shiori and her friend to join him and his friends at karaoke. At the karaoke shop, the pair got close and she gave him his cellphone number.
As the days went by, the two started exchanging messages and decided to date. Kazuhito, who was actually 26, told Shiori he was 23 years old and gave her a fake name. He also told her he was an aspiring entrepreneur. He was actually connected to brothels that masquerade as massage parlors.