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1988 (A) 1124

1990.11.20
1988 (A) 1124
Keishu Vol. 44, No. 8
Decision concerning the case in which the Court ruled that a causal relationship can be found between the initial assault and the victim's death even if the assault by a third party was a factor involved in on the victim's death
Case charged for injury causing death, and injury
Decision of the Third Petty Bench, dismissed
Osaka High Court, Judgment of September 6, 1988
In the case where the assault by the accused caused an injury that became the cause of the victim's death, a causal relationship can be found between the assault by the accused and the victim's death even if the victim's death was hastened due to a subsequent assault by a third party.
Part I, Chapter VII, and Article 205, paragraph (1) of the Penal Code



Penal Code

Article 205, paragraph (1)

(1) A person who causes another to suffer injury resulting in death shall be punished by imprisonment with work for a definite term of not less than 2 years.
The final appeal is dismissed.
The reasons for final appeal stated by the defense counsel, KADOI Setsuo, are in effect arguments of mere violation of laws and regulations, erroneous finding of facts, and inappropriate sentencing, and they do not constitute any of the reasons for final appeal referred to in Article 405 of the Code of Criminal Procedure.

According to the judgment in prior instance and the findings in the judgment in first instance upheld by the former, the facts of the case are as follows. On January 15, 1981, from around 8:00 p.m. to around 9:00 p.m., the accused, at the construction camp operated thereby at [a]-[b], Ayama County, Mie Prefecture, assaulted the victim by beating him/her on the head or other body parts many times with the bottom of a washbowl and a leather band, and as a result, made the victim's blood pressure rise due to the psychological pressure arising from fear, and caused the victim to suffer hypertensive pontine intracerebral hemorrhage from internal causes and lose consciousness. After that, the accused transported the victim by car to the construction material company's storage site located at [c]-[d], Osaka City, and, after leaving the victim at the storage site, left the location around 10:40 p.m. on the same day. During the early hours of the morning on January 16, the victim died of hypertensive pontine intracerebral hemorrhage from internal causes. While lying alive face down at the storage site, the victim was beaten on the top of his head by someone unknown with a square timber. The assault by this unknown attacker had an effect of aggravating the hypertensive pontine intracerebral hemorrhage that had already been caused and hastening the victim's death to some extent.

In the case where the assault by the criminal thus caused an injury that became the cause of the victim's death, the causal relationship between the assault by the criminal and the victim's death can be confirmed even if the victim's death was hastened due to a subsequent assault by a third party, and hence, the determination of the court of prior instance that found the crime of injury causing death in this case is justifiable.

Accordingly, in accordance with Article 414, Article 386, paragraph (1), item (iii), and the proviso to Article 181, paragraph (1) of the Code of Criminal Procedure, the Court unanimously decides as set forth in the main text of the decision.
Justice KABE Tsuneo

Justice SAKAUE Toshio

Justice SONOBE Itsuo

Justice SATO Shoichiro
(This translation is provisional and subject to revision.)