Case 148

The Miyazawa Family

*** Content Warning: child victims ***

The Miyazawa’s were a seemingly normal family who lived in a semi-detached, three-storey house in Setagaya’s Kamisoshigaya district. But when their bodies are found brutally slaughtered in their own home, questions begin to emerge as to whether the family could be hiding any secrets. 

The crime scene is full of evidence that indicates a swift arrest will be made, but as the investigation continues, the mystery grows bigger and bigger. Police, the media and the public are left terrified and bewildered by what soon becomes one of Japan’s most baffling criminal cases.



Casefile Presents



Research – Holly Boyd

Writing – Elsha McGill

Creative direction – Milly Raso

Narration – Anonymous Host



‘Flatline intro’ and ‘Come play with me’ intro and outro –

Audio production – Mike Migas 

Scoring – Mike Migas and Andrew Joslyn



Logo and website design – Paulina Szymanska



Although Casefile episodes are free for all listeners, those who want to support us financially can do so by becoming a member of Patreon, Apple Premium or Spotify Premium. Paid subscribers receive access to exclusive content including behind-the-scenes discussions with the Casefile team, interviews, early releases and ad-free episodes.




Robbery and quadruple murder of a family in Kami-Soshigaya 3-chome – Tokyo Metropolitan Police Department (as at 16 December 2019)

Also includes:
3D image video of the crime scene and its vicinity at the time of the murder

How did the perpetrator use the handkerchiefs?

What is the colour of the perpetrator’s hair?

What are the characteristics of the shoes worn by the perpetrator? 

Where was the scarf manufactured? Where was it sold?

Investigation special cash reward systems

English PDF case detail

English PDF information on wanted “Ojizosan” statue

What are the characteristics of the hip bag and scarf?



Setagaya Family Murder Case – Confessions of Intruders – by Tora Saito

If You Can Understand the Meaning of this Sadness: The Setagaya Case, The Story of Loss and Rebirth – by Anku Irie

Setagaya Family Murder Case: 15 years on, the new facts – by Fumiya Ichihashi



Misdeeds by once-honored police dismay the Japanese – The New York Times (7 March 2000)

Shirt may be linked to family’s killer – Japan Times (4 January 2001)

Brutal murder of family heightens Japanese fears – the Guardian (7 January 2001)

Suspect stayed at Setagaya home half-day after murders – Japan Policy and Politics (the FreeLibrary) (29 June 2001)

Photos of murdered family shown in memorial exhibit – Japan Times (29 December 2003)

Setagaya killer may be Asian or Japanese of mixed descent: report+ – TMC News (17 October 2006)

Kin of murder victims seek open-ended cases – Kyodo News (12 January 2009)

Diet abolishes statute of limitations on murder – The Asahi Shimbun (28 April 2010)

12 years since the Setagaya family murder case… – Asahi (12 September 2012)

Police extend claim period for rewards in 3 unsolved murder cases – Japan Today (10 December 2012)

Family’s killer may have left home at night – Daily Yomiuri (via Questia) (13 December 2014)

Setagaya family killed “man with blood in hand near the scene” – NHK (Japan’s public broadcaster) (23 March 2015)

New book claims to shed light on Setagaya family murders in 2000 – Japan Today (13 December 2015)

Reward period extended in 5 murder cases – Japan Today (8 December 2015)

Relative of murdered family says TV Asahi program misrepresented her – The Japan Times (14 December 2015)

Setagaya Family murder, I know the “true culprit” – fatal police failure and media negligence – Kodansha (25 December 2015)

BPO recommends TV Asahi Special program for Setagaya family killing case – Asahi (12 September 2016)

Setagaya family murder case – did the culprit flee by about 3:30 am – Asahi (28 December 2015)

Police vow to solve 2000 murder of Tokyo family – Mainichi (31 December 2015)

Setagaya family murder, victim’s sister’s “afterwards” – Toyokeizai (13 January 2018)

The Global Economy looks disturbingly like Japan before its ‘Lost Decade’ – Forbes (18 April 2019)

Police in talks with Setagaya family murder victims’ relatives about demolishing crime scene – Japan Today (19 November 2019)

The Killer without a Face – ABC (28 December 2019)

Relative of slain family fights to preserve their house in Tokyo – the Asahi Shimbun (19 January 2020)



BPO Decision regarding An Irie’s complaint against Asahi TV (12 September 2016)

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This