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First seen in strip 627.

Hitoshi is Erika's ex-fiancé and Inspector Sonoda's brother. According to Kimiko's description of him, during high school he was "boring, plain, quiet, and shy". As Inspector Sonoda tells us, Hitoshi was, and presumably still is, an engineer; a fact which only underscores how different he and Erika were.

Personality differences aside, there is some evidence that even prior to their breakup, the situation between Erika and Hitoshi was not ideal. For reasons not yet known, Hitoshi apparently arranged things in such a way that Erika never interacted with either of Inspector Sonoda's children. This resulted in some confusion as Erika believed the Sonodas didn't want her near their children, while they believed that their children would make Erika uncomfortable.

Ultimately, because he felt unworthy of being with Erika, Hitoshi broke off their engagement at the height of her career. It is believed by fans that the subsequent depression Erika felt as a result of the breakup is what caused her to leave the industry altogether. Indeed, Inspector Sonoda states that she "removed herself from the field at the height of her career and popularity". This coincides with what Kimiko tells us about the timing of Hitoshi's breakup with her.

For his part, Hitoshi seems to have moved on with his life rather well. He is now an engineering manager at the company he works for and has gotten married (she is also an engineer).

Relations with other characters

His ex-fiancé. The two had been dating since high school. It is unknown how long their relationship lasted.
It's unknown what kind of relationship the two shared, but information from Kimiko and more recently Erika confirms that Kimiko, Erika and Hitoshi attended the same high school.
Inspector Sonoda
Brothers. Hitoshi is probably a younger brother, as evidenced by his position in life relative to Masamichi, though there is no concrete evidence stating which Sonoda is older.
Yuki and Yuuji
His niece and nephew. For reasons unknown, Hitoshi prevented them from ever meeting Erika.