Japan has one of the lowest crime rates in the world. Considered by many to be one of the safest countries in which to live. Reports mention that it is possible to see people who leave the doors of their homes open, children who walk to school alone without the risk of being kidnapped or even robbed, such crimes practically do not exist in the Land of the Rising Sun.
But that’s not to say that a barbaric crime doesn’t happen from time to time. In Japan, there have been some crimes that have shocked the Japanese and world population to the core. One such instance is the Nevada-Tan case.
The shocking story of Nevada-Tan
Nevada-Tan is the name commonly used to describe an 11-year-old Japanese schoolgirl named Natsumi Tsuji who was charged with murdering her classmate Satomi Mitarai. The murder occurred on June 1, 2004 at an elementary school in Sasebo, Japan and involved the slitting of Mitarai’s throat and arms with a box cutter.
Natsumi Tsuji aka Nevada-tan. ©️ Know Your Meme
Natsumi Tsuji was born on November 21, 1992, and at the age of 11 she was already featured at the Okubo Elementary School of Sasebo, in Nagasaki Prefecture thanks to her high grades and her IQ of 140.
Two inseparable friends become bitter towards each other
Natsumi had an inseparable friend named Satomi Mitarai, who was 12 years old. The two had been friends for several years and were always seen together, but fate wanted their friendship to turn to hate, due to an argument over popularity.
By the time the two girls’ friendship came to an end, Natsumi was already getting involved in violent Japanese films. Her favorite work was “Battle Royale”, a film considered cultured, which recounts an unsustainable situation of youth violence. In the long storyline the Japanese government is forced to drop a group of students on an island, the young people have to kill each other.
It is not known for sure how much fictional stories influenced Natsumi, but the girl was increasingly distancing herself from her studies and withdrawing from her studies. Created a web page exclusively dedicated to the world of terror, extreme violence, violent hentai and gore entitled to mutilations, blood and eschatology. Remembering that she was only 11 years old.
Murder of Satomi Mitarai
Satomi Mitarai. ©️ BBC
On June 1, 2004, Natsumi Tsuji took her classmate Satomi Mitarai to an empty classroom. She blindfolded her with the excuse that she wanted to play a game with her. With her old friend blindfolded, and without another word, Natsumi cut Satomi’s throat with her box cutter in cold blood.
Unsatisfied, the 11-year-old girl still caused several other cuts on the victim’s arms. After that, with bloody clothes and hands, she returned to class as if nothing had happened. Her teacher, seeing her covered in blood and with the box cutter in her hand, raised the alarm. Soon the terrifying truth would reveal itself, leaving everyone perplexed.
After murdering Satomi, Natsumi returned to her classroom in her bloodstained clothes and with the box cutter (her murder weapon) in her pocket. ©️ Lurkomorye.net
Paramedics were called, but when they arrived at the scene, they found Satomi’s body dead. Meanwhile, the police were already in possession of the young murderer, who simply said: “I did something wrong, right? I’m sorry.”
Confession: Natsumi conveyed her reason behind the killing of her once best friend
Natsumi was eventually taken to the police station, where she spent the night. In the first statements, she had hidden the reason why she had attacked Satomi, but after some time she ended up revealing that she murdered Satomi Mitarai because of comments the victim had made on the internet about her weight.
The petty assassin was tried on September 15, 2004 and sentenced to 9 years in the Tochigi prefecture reformatory. The Japanese government is very discreet about the privacy of crimes committed by minors, and prohibited the media from disclosing the girl’s name at the time. The news called her “Girl A.” However, a Fuji TV journalist, whether on purpose or carelessly, revealed her real name: Natsumi.
In the photo below, you can see Natsumi (the assassin) on the left and Satomi (victim) on the right, both identified with a red arrow. In this photo, the girl was wearing a blue sweatshirt on which the word “NEVADA” (from the university of the same name in Reno) can be identified in white letters. That’s where the nickname Nevada-Tan came from, which in Japanese comes to mean something like “little Nevada”, alluding to the inscription on her garment. In other places they also know her as Nevada-Chan. (NOTE: this photo was taken a few hours before the murder, and is the last photo of Satomi alive).
Natsumi (the girl in the left) that day was wearing pants and a sweatshirt. A few hours before the crime, a group photograph was taken where Natsumi (the assassin) can be seen already in the left. And in the right side of the photograph Satomi (victim) making a V for victory with her fingers. ©️ Wikimedia Commons
The 11-year-old assassin ends up becoming a myth. Many individuals come to worship the little killer in the nevada sweatshirt on the internet.
The small Nevada figure (in memes) started to get popular on Japanese forums like 2chan. Later, other anonymous forums would start talking about the subject, and thus creating a great phenomenon involving several groups on the internet.
Nevada-tan meme. ©️ Know-your-meme
The Nevada-Tan meme would eventually circulate around the world. The girl has been elevated to virtual celebrity status, becoming a ghoulish icon for equally sick teenagers across the internet.