Senaiho Update 2: School Bullying in Yamanashi JHS: How people who file complaints for official harassment get harassed back.


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Hi Blog. Here’s a second update from “Senaiho”, who has given important updates (previous ones here and here) about overzealous enforcers of school rules in Japan’s compulsory education system acting as what has long called “the Hair Police“. This phenomenon particularly affects NJ and Japanese of diverse backgrounds, who are forced by officials to dye and/or straighten their naturally “Non-Asian” hair just to attend school.

Bullying is rife in Japanese education, but when it’s ignored (or even perpetuated) by officialdom, this feeling of powerlessness will leave children (particularly those NJ children with diverse physical features targeted for “standing out“) and their families scarred for life.  (As discussed at length in book “Embedded Racism“, pg. 154-5.)  As reported on at the beginning of this year, after months of playing by the rules established by the local Board of Education, Senaiho finally lodged a formal criminal complaint against his daughter’s school officials, and it’s smoking out hidden documents.

The update is that The BOE is simply engaging in obfuscation and coverup. After attracting some (domestic) press attention (which didn’t itself cover the racial-discrimination aspect of this happening to a child of international background, for having the wrong natural hair color/texture), the local government has decided (as you can see below) to investigate not the case (to prevent something like this from ever happening again to another student), but rather how not to get sued. Official transcripts are also indicating testimonies grounded in rumor, not fact, without direct input from the victimized family.  And for good measure, we now have the time-worn bureaucratic tactic of smothering claimants with documents to consume all their free time. All while Senaiho is attempting to take this out of local lackluster investigative hands and into criminal court, by filing a criminal complaint.

The interesting news is that according to a recent article in Japan Today (full text after Senaiho’s dispatches) is that forcible hair cutting like this is seen as (generally distasteful) corporal punishment (taibatsu) elsewhere (in conservative Yamaguchi Prefecture of all places, home constituency of PM Abe).  In that case, apologies were forced by the students, top-down pressure put on the teacher to reform, and the teacher being relieved of some of his duties.  Let’s keep an eye on Senaiho’s case, for if his criminal complaint succeeds, it will be a template for others on how to take cases of abusive teachers out of the hands of evasive, “see-no-evil” Boards of Education, and protect diverse children from the cookie-cutter conformity of Japan’s JHSs and SHSs.  Debito Arudou Ph.D.

From: Senaiho
Subject: officials meeting transcripts
Date: March 25, 2019
To: Debito Arudou <>
Hello Debito,

On the way to the prosecutors office yesterday we picked up a copy of all the documents the city office has concerning us. We made the disclosure request about a month ago. We have gone over most of it and I can report to you and your readers about the contents.

I have to begin by saying that we are only allowed to see documents that relate to us directly, so in the picture I sent, you can see we have the minutes of meetings between elected officials and heads of departments and their staff. Everything that does not relate to us is redacted, however if you hold the copies under a strong light, it is readable. I won t dwell on any of that for now. What I can say without a scientific survey, is that about 90% of the discussion about us in these meetings discussed how to avoid being sued. There was never anything discussed about how to make things right, or how to do anything properly, it was all a discussion on how to avoid, confuse, delay, and obfuscate. There was a small discussion on who might be personally responsible if a suit occurred, and the impression I got was they were all out to minimize their own personal responsibility by shifting the blame to some other department or person other than themselves. There was some discussion on the effect of the mass media, again trying to strategize a way to make themselves look better in some light. The remainder of the discussion was about a rumor some official had heard from someone in our neighborhood that we requested the teacher to cut our daughter’s hair and that we were in fact glad that they cut it. How ludicrous! We now know who the source of this non fact is.

Since some of these comments were made by elected officials, we have the right to demand clarification from these officials on the exact meaning of some of their statements which we will soon do.

So anyone who has ever wondered what these well paid officials do with some of their employed hours, now you know. Senaiho

From: Senaiho
Subject: council meeting transcripts
Date: March 27, 2019
To: Debito Arudou <>

Hello Debito,
We got another major data dump from the city office yesterday and are trying to sort through that now so have several balls to juggle. I think this might be a little difficult for your readers to grasp, so I will try to explain what these meeting transcripts are about and the issues we have with it.

1. There is an elected official on the town council by the name of Takei Toshihisa, you can find his name in the documents. He states several times in meetings that he has heard a “rumor” that he keeps repeating that my wife gave permission to the teacher and in fact asked her to cut our daughters hair. This is an outright lie. At first they tried the narrative that my daughter gave permission to the teacher to cut her hair, but now they are trying to make my wife the trouble maker by supposedly asking the teacher to cut our daughters hair. This is the tactic of shifting the blame from the perpetrator, i.e. the teacher and trying to place the focus of the cause of the trouble onto the victims, or in other words blame the victim for the accident. This was the strategy from the beginning by the B. of E. and the town council member is just following that line.

2. This town council member also tries to change the language of the incident and insists on downgrading the title of it from a “school accident” to something less serious, like “school incident”. By doing this he thinks it will lessen the seriousness and their liability in case they are sued. Just calling something by what it is not, will make it go away or lessen the impact of it. Here he shows that he has no understanding of what his job is as a member of the town council. Their job is oversight of the functions of the city government. When the B. of E. was not doing their jobs and following the law we petitioned the town council to oversee them and make them do it. You can see by these transcripts they are in fact not doing it.

3. Its not in these transcripts, but another member of the town council who happens to support our cause told us that she heard from this Takei san regarding us as people; “These people are a problem.” I suppose he has some deep seated hatred of mixed marriages and their offspring residing in “his” town. We plan on filing a complaint petition about what he says and the job he is doing which is our right as a citizen. I hope more people will do the same in their area.

If our case is taken up by the prosecutor it will be because of the fact that we have mountains of evidence showing what we claim. As you may know most cases get dismissed because of a lack of evidence. We started collecting it from the day we suspected our daughter was being bullied. We have recordings, pictures, statements from witnesses, documents, many bytes of stuff all on google drive. Without it we would be nowhere today. I cant stress this enough. Senaiho

Japan Today article:

High school teacher in hot water after forcibly giving male student a buzz cut
Apr. 4, 2019, courtesy of JDG
By Koh Ruide, SoraNews24 TOKYO

Not too long ago, teachers from a Japanese school made media headlines when they went to the extreme of cutting off 44 students’ hair for not meeting the dress code. And it appears a similar incident has happened again, this time in Kudamatsu Technical High School in Yamaguchi Prefecture.

In late autumn last year, a male teacher in his forties allegedly grabbed an electric hair clipper and gave one of his first-year male students a buzz cut, causing the boy take a leave of absence from school shortly after.

When approached by the principal in December, the teacher claimed he did it because his hair was too long.

But it seemed the problem ran deeper, as the educator had often hurled verbal abuse at his homeroom class, calling them “morons”, “idiots” and “stupid”, earning him a stern reprimand from the principal. When classes resumed in January after the New Year holidays, the teacher’s personality had apparently changed for the better, an improvement the principal thought not important to warrant reporting to the local Board of Education.

But all 40 pupils of that class and their parents had not forgotten that the educator forcibly cut someone’s hair, and furiously launched a petition to the board in February this year calling for his disciplinary dismissal.

In an effort to appease them, a meeting between school, Board of Education, students and parents was held on March 15, where the teacher officially apologized for his mistakes.

“Forcibly cutting students’ hair amounts to corporal punishment,” a board spokesman said firmly.

The educator’s role has now been shifted from homeroom teacher to assistant teacher, away from tasks that involve student-teacher interactions. “The current situation is still under investigation, and we will consider the feelings of the parents and students with regards to the teacher’s future,” said the principal.

“I deeply regret that it has come to this. I failed to report to the Board of Education because I thought the issue was solved with the teacher correcting his behavior, but I should have done so,” the principal apologized.

Source: Nikkan Sports via My Game News Flash


Nikkan Sports original article, courtesy of AnonymousOG:

教諭が生徒の髪を丸刈り 保護者らが懲戒免職を嘆願
[2019年3月25日 日刊スポーツ]





その後、今年1月に入り、同教諭の生徒指導が「人が変わったくらい」(同校長)改善されたように見えたため、教育委員会へ一連の事態について報告しなかったが、2月に嘆願書が出された。学校側は15日に教育委員会同席の上で生徒、保護者と分けて説明会を行い、教諭は謝罪したという。高橋校長は「子どもたちにとって12月までの言動、考えが変わったのだろうか? と疑問があったのでは」と説明した。



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46 comments on “Senaiho Update 2: School Bullying in Yamanashi JHS: How people who file complaints for official harassment get harassed back.

  • Jim Di Griz says:

    Keep going!
    Obviously they are now terrified of being the one ‘left without a chair when the music stops’.
    Clearly, their focus on responsibility and avoiding it shows that they now fear someone will be held accountable and lose their job or more.
    And it doesn’t matter who ends up losing their job (or more), the fact that someone did will make sure that no one will do this again.

    Rumors? Yeah, that’s nice, but any evidence? No? Then it’s meaningless. Acting on rumors? Seriously, WTF?

    • Jim Di Griz says:

      Maybe you should ask them about a ‘rumor’ you ‘heard’ that the teacher in question has an ‘unhealthy interest’ in your daughter, and see if they want to act on that, or if they agree rumors have no value?

      • One thing I sort of hinted at and I think most of the sharp people here got is the narrative they tried at first claiming my daughter gave the teacher permission to cut her hair. Someone more sophisticated obviously pointed out that she is a minor so that won t fly, so they changed it to the “rumor” story to her mother asking the teacher to cut it.

        I would normally be tempted to do the eye for an eye rumor thing, but they have done a pretty good job of digging holes and falling into them themselves.

        • lol. true enough, so far. But if anyone tries that ‘rumor’ thing in front of you, here is how to deal with it.

          “Well I heard a rumor that her mother gave permission to cut her hair”

          “Who did you hear that from?”

          “I can’t remember who I heard it from but I definitely heard it”

          “If you can’t remember who said it then your memory is not reliable.”

          “Well I remember but I can’t tell you the name because this is a subject of an ongoing legal case (i.e. yours)”

          “There is no law in Japan that says you can’t tell me the name of someone who told you something. It is not against the law for you to tell me. It is just your decision not to”

          “I can’t tell you because it is not fair to put their name in public”

          Anyone can lie anonymously and only a fool would believe such a lie. If you state your name to back up your claim then maybe I would pay it some attention, otherwise not.

          • In the press conference the B of E gave the end of Feb. a reporter asked the head of the B of E that question and he replied “a neighbor.” What he failed to mention is that this neighbor was at the time a member of the B of E so we know exactly who this rumor mill is. It’s all recorded for posterity.

      • seems classic passive aggressive, but how many of the below so clearly describe Japanese societal norms?
        “Other examples of passive-aggressive behavior might include avoiding direct or clear communication, evading problems, fear of intimacy or competition, making excuses, blaming others, obstructionism, “playing the victim”, feigning compliance with requests, sarcasm, backhanded compliments, and hiding anger.”

        — Sarcasm, not so much. 🙂

  • D in Aichi says:

    Keep it up.

    Two things you should (always) keep in mind (which I’m sure you’re doing)

    a) ask questions in writing and get answers back in writing, (signed, stamped etc) — keep written records for EVERYTHING

    b) should you speak to anybody – RECORD the entire conversation – get their names on the recording as well as the day/date and time


  • We have taken this to the next step yesterday by hiring a new lawyer who will shortly be starting the court process of suing the perpetrators for racial discrimination and bullying. A long process but necessary as the three year statute of limitations will run out for our case in the next month or so.

    • We got a call from the former lawyer we had today. She wanted a piece of the law suit we will be soon filing against the Yamanashi city government. Not sure how she found out about that. I assume all lawyers in a small country like Japan talk to each other. Anyway we gave her some document fetching chores as crumbs to placate her. She was the one who totally folded in the face of the finger pointing by the B of E, so called, third party investigation committee. Not my favorite flavor of lawyer.

      • Not sure how she found out about it? I wonder if your new lawyer knows about their duty of confidentiality to the client? (which is one duty that japanese lawyers do have)

        Ask them whether they know about their duty of confidentiality to the client and whether they have been using your name when talking about your case to their friends. What would the bengoshikai think about that kind of behavior? Perhaps your lawyer thought you were just gaijin so it didn’t matter.

        • I hate to tell you how many lawyers we went to who refused to help us. Then this lady lawyer agreed hesitatingly to take us on, I paid her, then when a hot wind blew she dried up and blew away. In the meantime my wife went full bore on social media and the lawyers came out of the woodwork to offer their services. After we filed the criminal complaint , and that was in the papers, a few lawyers started contacting us asking to have a piece. Our lady lawyer friend was among these. They seem to be a very privileged class in Japan able to pick and choose work that suits them. Wish I could do that.

          • Supporting you and your smart family Senaiho!
            You seem to be on the cusp of a good chance now for a little bit of long-awaited vindication. I wish you nothing but success and will follow your trial.

  • The trouble with lawyers in Japan is that us westerners think that lawyers are on our side because that’s how our legal system works. No, they work for the Japanese legal system. Sure, they want our money, but at the moment when the Japan’s interests outweigh yours, they will abandon you.

    • I Should have expressed what I said above in more detail.

      The trouble is that westerners expect Japanese lawyers to have the same powers, and to be bound by the same rules of ethics, that western lawyers are.

      But Japanese lawyers don’t and aren’t.

      Japanese lawyers don’t have any powers over police matters. None. So they can’t make sure Japanese police interrogate you in the correct manner. They can’t even do that simple thing. Western lawyers can make sure the police follow all the rules of disclosure of evidence and so forth, but Japanese lawyers can’t. They don’t have that power.

      Japanese lawyers also don’t have the same ethical duties that western lawyers have. There is no cab rank rule in Japan, for example. The cab rank rule says that if you are qualified to take on someones case and are not otherwise constrained then you have to take on that person’s case, regardless of how you feel about them. It is because everyone deserves legal representation.

      No such rule in Japan. A lawyer can refuse to represent you for no reason at all.

      Japanese lawyers collude with each other to their own benefit, over the benefit of their own clients, and that would be illegal in any western country. We saw this in the Seinaho case where one lawyer was appointed to an investigative committee because he had access to the plaintiff’s lawyer and could persuade him to abandon his client. I have seen similar cases happen before where a senior partner hit another subordinate lawyer in the face and no other lawyer would take up the assault charge.

      • All it took was another lawyer pointing their finger at her and she wilted away like spit on hot asphalt. And this was AFTER I gave her a lot of money to represent us.

        • Can you get your money back? Hired a J lawyer for an immigration issue a decade ago. Went to detention to see a friend, the lawyer basiclaly just accompanied me and I had to do all the questioning and making sure the friend was OK etc. The lawyer just said “so desu ne” to everything the police Japan’ Splained to us.

          Friend appealed. Same answer immediately (No). Was deported/ 5 years later, still not allowed in (despite the ban being for 5 years).

  • I really wish you all the best Seinaho, especially your daughter.
    Really rooting for you on the sidelines, and also very thankful for all the data you are sharing with us (and Debito is publishing & hosting).

    If the Ministry or the legal system end up taking the correct steps, this may be a catalyst for improvement and against bullying. And that will benefit all kids in this country.

  • “…who has given important updates (previous ones here and here) about overzealous enforcers of school rules in Japan’s compulsory education system…”

    It should be noted that they are not overzealous enforcers of school rules. They are unrepentant transgressors of school rules. The school rules say no dyed hair. Yet they enforcers want to force kids to dye their hair. Absolute nonsense.

    We heard from the prosecutors office today that our case has been accepted. This might not seem like a big deal but given the fact that most cases like ours never reach this important stage for a variety of reasons, lack of evidence, lack of witnesses, you name it, it matters greatly. What happens next depends on many factors, the investigation will start or actually continue, but instead of a n.j. and his crazy wife demanding justice, it will have the weight of the Public Prosecutors office. A big difference.

    Most likely the city office will contact us and offer a pittance to drop the case. We refuse, the process continues to criminal court. I am in virgin territory here. We will shortly be filing a civil suit against the city office and the original perpetrators which is a long process also. Anyway we are not patting ourselves on the back but we will be quietly celebrating this evening. Thank you all again and Debito for your support.

    • AnonymousOG says:

      “Most likely the city office will contact us and offer a pittance to drop the case. We refuse, the process continues to criminal court.”

      Yes, exactly, please do that. By refusing to drop the case, the criminal court will demand un-redacted documents in which you and your lawyers will find sufficient evidence about the emotional suffering caused by particular name-able individuals public workers who committed particular law-violating actions, plus new evidence about many even larger violations of the law will also probably be found now that some prosecutor seems to have decided, “I don’t like these particular individuals’ actions, I’m gonna’ bring ’em down.”

      By the way folks, as we all know, once a judge in Japan has decided to give bail, it implies that the arrested person in question probably will be given a suspended sentence (meaning no prison time) (meaning in Japan the future trial and even sentence is usually already predetermined by the judge and lawyers in the backroom pre-trial agreement meetings), just as conversely the judges in Japan usually do NOT give bail to folks whom the judges already have decided will receive prison time.

      And usually, once a prosecutor in Japan has decided to prosecute some folks, it implies that the defendants in question probably will be prosecuted hard and will probably be found guilty of something, either the original charge or something else, since prosecutors in Japan usually ONLY take on the cases they are sure they have enough evidence (or, ahem, have immorally illegally hidden enough exonerating evidence) to win easily.

      So finally, this fact about Japan’s court system is good news for once: since that prosecutor has decided to prosecute some folks, it implies that the defendants in question probably will be prosecuted hard and will probably be found guilty of something, either the original charge or something else.

      “We will shortly be filing a civil suit against the city office and the original perpetrators which is a long process also.”

      Yes, exactly, please do that. Refusing to drop the criminal court case, no matter what pittance they try to bribe you with (they will be forced by the courts to pay much more, so simply continue towards showing all the evidence in criminal court [and having the judge demand they show all their documents, everything!!!], go all the way), and then, concurrently, the civil suit. Criminal court progress and civil court progress, congratulations about steadily moving forward, may your family see as much justice as possible in both courts. 🙂

      • Thank you for this information. Like I said this is uncharted territory for me.
        I did hear that the teachers charged were to be put on “administrative leave” for the duration of the investigation. With pay of course! The principal involved retired the end of the school year in ’18. Also the prosecutors will decide whether it is a cooperative investigation or uncooperative which is where they go on and take everything out in boxes Carlos Ghosn style.

  • I want to point out that we did ALL of the work of gathering evidence and submitting it to the prosecutors in a form acceptable to them, which SHOULD have been done, or would have been done by the police, in a truly civilized country. Japan just paints itself as a first world country over its tribal rust.

    • Jim Di Griz says:

      Well, this is true, but screw ’em, you’re doing the right thing and should be proud of yourself for not being fobbed off by a whole system designed to keep you down. Well played sir! Enjoy your celebration tonight!

  • Senaiho: You have a very righteous cause. It is easy for me to say this from behind a keyboard and not having to go through all you are going through but a huge kudos to you and your wife for taking this to the limit and I hope you let this play out completely. Thanks for sharing this here. The treatment given to your daughter was barbaric and I truly admire what you and your wife are doing.

  • Congratulations Senaiho for getting to this important stage! You have grit and they can’t continue to ignore you anymore. Thank you for updating us, and we are eagerly awaiting a promising result.

    If something goes off the rails I think it would be worth for all of us readers to use social media to bring it to worldwide attention, because it is a disgrace what happened to your daughter, how it was ignored by the officials (“the reason for the bullying was not investigated closely”, is what they said. They did nothing.) and finally, how it was reported in the news where the actual act of bullying was simply not discussed, and just a fake apology for letting the issue fester was given.

    Unacceptable anywhere else but Japan

    • In my previous experience in Japan when things don’t go the way powers- that- be want them to go, they resort to “unconventional” means which is usually some form of intimidation in which the police do absolutely nothing about.

      If we experience anything like this, you fine folks here will be the first to know.

  • Well done Senaiho. I have no dog in the race. I have no children and 25 years has made me just indifferent about Japanese society and its ‘ways’. However this is about universal decency and a moral injustice done to your daughter, which your average Japanese on the street would think was wrong. Again, well done and although we’re not there in flesh, we are there in spirit; as is that average Japanese.

  • Update
    We were contacted by a representative of the city head yesterday (shchou) who hinted that the head of the city would like to meet us to discuss “terms” which I assume means some pittance in return for dropping the criminal charges.

    We have not decided about whether to meet him or not, whether to be attented to by legal representation or not, whether this is just another ruse to stall and delay, or not. I am against it, but not strongly against as I just don’t trust them.

    • AnonymousOG says:

      Well, the mayor is a public worker, and he wants to meet you during his public working hours, so you have the legal right to record him. 🙂

      One option is to tell him while pulling out the camera/phone, “Bouhan Kamera for the court: I’m recording audio and video to show the court you public workers committing more criminal actions.”

      The other option is you can simply record audio secretly (with an actual digital camera with microphone, or a recording app on your cell phone, either way you can stealthily pre-prepare in your pocket the “switched on, recording in advance” camera/app) and simply not mention it to the working public workers the fact that this legal recording is taking place.

      Not mentioning you are recording seems like the way to go, since you already know you have the legal right to record working public workers, there is no need to announce “I’m recording you”, and there is no benefit in announcing that, because suddenly they would change their sentences and try to hide their illegalities, and they also would suddenly become oscar-winning actors pretending to be goodhearted moralistic individuals trying to help the big bad “misunderstanding” foreign monster.

      By not mentioning you are recording, chances are higher that the mayor (or one of the other public workers under him) will say something illegal (because they all assume they can just lie later about what they said, if questioned later by a prosecutor or a court judge, and they all assume they will be believed over you in such a “he said, she said” situation) so since they are making such assumptions just let them also make the erroneous assumption that you don’t have a recorder switched on in your pocket.

      Imagine this: you switch on the recorder in your pocket in advance, you walk into the mayor’s office, the mayor says some illegal things trying to coerce you to drop the case, you secretly record the whole conversation without mentioning you are recording, then you submit court documents in which you CLAIM “I am quite sure the mayor said illegal sentences A, B, and C.” and then the mayor assumes this is the standard “Japanese claimant versus Foreigner claimant” situation, so he starts bold-faced LYING to the prosecutor and to the court judge basically saying, “This foreigner misunderstood me, I never said such sentences, I would never say such sentences, this foreigner’s claims about what I said during that meeting are absolutely incorrect!” and THEN once he stupidly has written or spoken such false statements to the prosecutor and to the court judge, THEN you suddenly reveal to the prosecutor and to the court judge your recording of the lying mayor, which means you suddenly have proved on the record that the mayor indeed committed illegal actions A, B, and C (for example: his offering you a bribe to drop the case, his threatening that if you don’t drop the case you’re going to have trouble, etc.) and even better: you suddenly have proved on the record that the mayor committed the ADDITIONAL illegal action of LYING to the prosecutor and LYING to the court judge, which will be a big problem for that mayor, since (regardless of the relatively minor, non-imprisonable, nature of the original sentences which the mayor was lying about to cover up) the bottom line is LYING to police officers, prosecutors, and/or judges, is itself a major imprisonable crime, ala Martha Stewart “making false statements” conviction. 🙂

      So yeah, I would go listen to (and of course record, without mentioning the recording) the mayor stupidly speaking various sentences meant to motivate you to drop the case, and I would even feign ignorance like Socrates/Ali-G/Borat to get the mayor to start feeling comfortable enough to relax and hopefully the mayor will then start saying even stupider stuff, all of which you will tell the prosecutor and the court judge about later, and then when the mayor is asked about that he will start lying to the prosecutor and to the court judge about what was supposedly said during this meeting, and then finally after the mayor has officially lied to the prosecutor and the court judge, THEN I would suddenly release to the prosecutor and to the court judge (and to media outlets, and to the mayor as well) the audio evidence proving the mayor lied to the prosecutor and the court judge: which was an imprisonable crime, Mr. Mayor! 🙂

      • We will meet and record everything of course. The problem from our perspective is how can you return 3 years of our daughters life? How can they fix her and our mental anguish? How can they reverse the damage from all the lies, the delays, the obfustication? How can they reverse the time wasted by their bogus third party investigation? You can’t put a monetary value on this although they will try.

        If they had done the right thing from the beginning instead of going to the dark side they would not be in criminal court now.

        • AnonymousOG says:

          Yes, exactly, the situation is just as you explained.

          The criminal court judgement (and then the civil court judgement) can NEVER fix the suffering of the victim and family.

          The only thing the upcoming judgements can do is: penalize the criminal actions committed by those specific public worker individuals, for justice and hopefully for future prevention of such crimes.

          Dear judges, please properly penalize these specific public worker individuals for the criminal actions they committed, your strong judgements today will help prevent such crimes by others in the future.

        • I meant to say they wouldn’t be looking at criminal court as it’s still a ways off. Lots of things need to happen yet.

    • Jim Di Griz says:

      I would meet him, and record the whole conversation without telling him you are doing so. He is a public working and you are meeting him in his role as such, so I think you have the right to record it (any legal opinions on that?).

  • Meet with him. See what he has to say. You don’t need a lawyer, just record everything with a pocket voice recorder. Don’t sign or agree to anything. You can bring a friend as a witness.

    We met with the prosecutors at the end of last week, here is a brief summary. We were not allowed to be present when our daughter gave a statement, but it appears she was not able to give a detailed account of the hair cutting incident enough for the prosecutors to be able to take it further. They did an investigation and of course the teachers denied doing anything, so without any other evidence, video, witnesses, etc. They don’t have enough to proceed. Very disappointing. It seems the law in Japan that applies is for FORCED haircuts, but without proof and a traumatised victim unable to recall the event, it’s a dead end. That leaves us with only the civil suit avenue.

    — Not surprising. Thanks for the update.

    • Jim Di Griz says:

      I’m sorry to hear this.
      But I am glad you pursued this avenue to its end, if only for your own peace of mind.
      And I sincerely hope that this whole experience has given your daughter a healthy distrust of authority and those who seek it. That’s invaluable in Japan, more so than elsewhere.

      • It would have been nice to have a criminal conviction even if it would have most likely been a slap on the wrist before going into civil court, but we gave it our best shot. We waited as long as we could for our daughter to heal somewhat from her experience with the worry that she might bury it, which is how it worked out.

        Thanks again for your and others support.

    • Sorry to hear this. You fought the good fight. The police sinply didn’t want to let you proceed against the government. There were witnessess ie, the other students, of course. Video?? Video of the crime happening? That’s what they needed? Oh lord how weak.

      • Jim Di Griz says:

        Video? Why didn’t the police just lock up the teacher until they confessed? That’s how it works here, right?
        Of course they aren’t going to do any of that fancy western style ‘investigation’ stuff! That’s like something from fiction! Sherlock Holmes or something!
        Nope, confessions all the way.

    • Teacher(s): admit to cutting the hair
      Jurisprudence: forced haircuts are violence
      No proof of either parental authorization or forced haircut
      Common sense: teachers don’t usually cut students’ hair
      Parents: have diligently collected evidence of bullying at school

      And now, according to the flawed logic of the police, they don’t have enough to proceed!!!

      They use the term “black box” to say that they can’t prosecute a rape case that happened in a room (not only in Shiro Ito’s case, I think), but apparently something that happens in front of the whole class is also a black box case!

      Huge respect for doing all this to protect your family, Senaiho.

      • Yeah Huge respect Senaiho. You did right by your daughter and your family. You were just up against a stacked deck.

        I never want to hear again about Japan’s low crime rate. The alleged low crime rate is a manufactured statistic dictated by police (i.e. government) policy.

        What organization is available to the public for redress against unjust police actions? I actually don’t know, but I know what they are in my own country. Do such similar apparatus exist in Japan? For complaints against police? Are they also handled by the police – that would be funny (not really though – It would be horrifying).


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