A 49-year-old mother from Tokyo was arrested after turning herself in and admitting that she left the body of her stillborn baby inside a coin locker in near Uguisudani Station in Taito Ward for several years.
The decaying body of the infant wrapped in a plastic bag in a baggage locker was found by the police on Monday, according to Kyodo News via Japan Times.
Authorities were made aware of the situation after the mother, identified as Emiri Suzaki, went to a police station in neighboring Arakawa Ward and informed officers that she left the body after she gave birth to the baby “four or five years ago.”
She reportedly kept the body inside the lockers and paid for the fees before moving it to a different one around Sept. 13.
“The suspect… left and abandoned the body of an infant inside the locker,” a Tokyo police spokesman told AFP via AsiaOne.
“I panicked after I did not give birth to a living child and kept the body as I could not dispose of it,” Suzaki told the police.
Authorities are now investigating the cause of death and believe that the body was abandoned shortly after the baby was born.
Suzaki made the decision to turn herself in after she left the home of a male acquaintance she was staying with following a dispute. She forgot to take the locker key with her after leaving and worried that her friend would later discover the stillborn baby’s body.
Suzaki’s decision to move the body the second time led to her arrest despite the statute of limitations for the abandonment of a body being three years.