A family in the city of Yokkaichi, Mie Prefecture sought the help of the prefectural police on Tuesday to search for their missing daughter, a 15-year old junior high school student. A police officer who received the notice went on to patrol in a vacant lot in the town of Asahi on Friday, and found the young girl, identified as Hiromi Terawa. It is believed that she was killed late night of August 25.
Hiromi’s body was discovered by the police on patrol at around 2:30 PM. Marks on Hiromi’s neck indicate that she was strangled. The police said her cause of death was suffocation believed to have happened on Sunday, the night she was last seen. Hiromi was in a supine position and without her clothes on when she was found. A bag, a sandal, and some clothing were found later in the area. The police have yet to identify if the items belong to Hiromi.
According to Hiromi’s friend, both of them went to a fireworks festival in the city. They parted ways at a local supermarket after getting off at the JR Asahi Station. Hiromi was still able to send a message to her older sister using the mobile app LINE saying, “I’m coming home.” Her sister called at about 11:00 PM, but Hiromi was out of reach. According to Hiromi’s friend who came with her to the fireworks festival, the junior high student did not mention meeting a friend when they parted. When found by the police, there were no marks on Hiromi’s body indicating she was dragged to the site.
When the police inquired from people living in the area, they were only told that nothing unusual was heard or seen, except for cars passing by. “Not many people come by on foot or by bicycle. There are no street lights, and it’s scary at night, even for an adult male,” said a 49-year old man living near the vacant lot where Hiromi was found.