Many think this is the land of milk and honey…which it is, but…

Here are some of today’s headlines:

Ex-gangster shoots four in Aichi, takes hostage

NAGOYA (Kyodo) A former gangster was holding a woman hostage in a house in Nagakute, Aichi Prefecture, late Thursday after shooting his son, daughter and two police officers during a tense standoff with police.

The situation intensified as it took more than five hours for local police to rescue Sgt. Akifumi Kimoto, who had collapsed outside the front door after he was shot in the neck shortly after 4 p.m.


The gunman, identified as Hisato Obayashi, 50, was holding hostage a woman believed to be another member of his family and threatened to open fire if an ambulance arrived.

Young couple arrested after infant’s body found

OSAKA (Kyodo) A young couple from Toyonaka, Osaka Prefecture, were arrested early Thursday on suspicion of abandoning the body of the woman’s 1-year-old child, prefectural police said.

The arrest of Mika Tamiya, 21, and her husband Motoki, 21, comes just a day after police identified the boy as Yu Minematsu, whose body was found in April in the gutter of a road in Nose, Osaka Prefecture, police said. Mika, who had the child in a previous marriage, was identified as the mother via DNA analysis.


Work-related suicides, insanity, soar in Japan Provided by: Associated Press
May. 17, 2007
TOKYO (AP) – The number of Japanese who killed themselves because of work jumped by 52 per cent last year, while work-induced mental illness also hit a record high, a health official said Thursday.

 But here’s the real doozie


Prosecutors get beheading case

Evidence suggests boy planned to dismember mother

FUKUSHIMA (Kyodo) A 17-year-old teenager arrested on suspicion of killing and beheading his mother in Fukushima Prefecture was sent to prosecutors Wednesday after evidence was found in his apartment suggesting the murder was premeditated, investigators said.



The woman’s dismembered body was found Tuesday on a futon in his apartment in Aizuwakamatsu after the teen showed up at a local police station with the head and said he had killed his mother. A kitchen knife was found near the body.

Although earlier reports said the knife was believed used both to kill the victim and behead her, the youth later told police he purchased a handsaw before the murder, police said.

Other media reports said the right arm was found spray-painted white and stuck in a plant pot in the apartment and that police now believe the youth used the saw to dismember his mother.

An autopsy found evidence the woman struggled before she died, suggesting the teen did not kill her quickly, police said.

At an emergency meeting held Wednesday morning at the boy’s high school, many students appeared shocked, participants said.

The school canceled classes for the week and will offer counseling to parents and students through Friday, school officials said.

The investigation so far has found that the youth spent several hours at an Internet cafe — carrying his mom’s head in a bag — before taking a taxi to the police station Tuesday morning to turn himself in.