A new book released by a Japanese man accused of killing his British English language teacher reveals chilling details how he performed plastic surgery on himself and evaded capture for two and a half years.
In the 238-page book "Until the Arrest," released Wednesday by Gentosha publishers, Tatsuya Ichihashi admits to killing Lindsay Ann Hawker in 2007. There are no plans to translate the book.
The body of Hawker, 22, was found in a sand-filled bathtub on Ichihashi's apartment balcony east of Tokyo.
After his arrest Nov. 10, 2009, Ichihashi, 32, admitted assaulting Hawker but denied intentions to kill her.
"I was so scared that I ran away," Ichihashi wrote in the book. "I ended up hurting not only the victim, but also [the feelings of] many other people."
Ichihashi does not elaborate on a motive, but reveals how he managed to stay out of sight for so long.
He wandered around Tokyo before heading to the northern Aomori prefecture where he lived on the streets.
He toured temples on the southwestern island of Shikoku in hopes that Hawker would "come back to life."
His travels took him to a remote island off the southern prefecture of Okinawa four times where he lived on fruit, fish and snakes he caught.
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When Ichihashi wasn't traveling, he worked several construction jobs so he could pay for cosmetic surgery.
A surgeon raised the bridge on his nose and cut double folds into his eyelids to make Ichihashi look "more Western," he said.
The two procedures followed the suspect's own attempt at altering his face.
In the book, which he wrote from jail, he reveals how he cut his lower lip with scissors to thin it out and used a knife to remove moles off his left cheek. He even used needle and thread to sew his nose.
Ichihashi avoided surveillance cameras out of fear that police would track him down, but a hospital reported his visit to police, after his second cosmetic surgery. That put investigators back on his trail.
"I froze," he wrote, describing the moment he saw news reports about his hospital visit. "My heart raced."
Ichihashi said the book is intended to be a "gesture of contrition" for his crime.
He said he plans to give royalties from the book to the Hawker family. But in a statement released Tuesday, the family said they did not want to be associated with the book in any way.
"The Hawker family are disgusted that the man who has yet to stand trial for Lindsay's murder has been allowed to write and publish a book," the statement said. "This has only served to cause the family more hurt and we want no association with it or him. All we have ever wanted is justice for Lindsay."
Ichihashi has said he will donate the proceeds to charity if the family refuses his offer.
His trial is expected to begin later this year.