Teru Mikami (魅上 照, Mikami Teru?) is a criminal prosecutor, fanatical supporter of Kira, and the fourth Kira. Mikami is selected as the new Kira by Light, purely based on his intuition, when he needs a new Kira proxy to hide his identity. He has a sense of righteousness that stems from his childhood, though his perspective was warped over the years and he now believes the evil should be destroyed. Mikami wishes to punish those he considers to be evil, (which, to Light's dismay, includes unproductive people and reformed criminals), and worships Kira as a God. Mikami mutters the word "delete" (削除, sakujo?) repeatedly to himself while writing in the Death Note, which Tsugumi Ohba felt made him more interesting. In the end, Mikami is captured by Near's team at the Yellow Box warehouse. While Mikami attempts suicide and bleeds to death after stabbing himself in the stomach with his pen in the anime, he dies in prison after going mad in the manga. Matsuda believes that Near wrote in the Death Note to manipulate and restrict Mikami's actions. Ohba stated that he leaves it up to the readers to decide if his theory is true. In the anime, he is voiced by Masaya Matsukaze in the original Japanese version, and by Kirby Morrow in the English dub. In the second Death Note rewrite special, Mikami is the one to kill the SPK (after Light blackmails the US President to leak information about the SPK, which he in turn forwards to Takada and Mikami), rather than the mafia, as shown in the manga.
Mikami was introduced into the story to take Misa's role as Kira. After struggling to create Mikami, Ohba created Mikami's backstory in order to establish Mikami and Light as "equals" and that Mikami is "special in some way." Mikami is the only character to receive a chapter dedicated to his past, and Ohba was reluctant to create the flashback because he personally does not like creating them. Though he usually did not add detail about "Kira worshippers", he decided to pay special attention to Mikami's first appearance. He wanted to have Mikami be both smart and dangerous, and have a hatred for societal evil, which he transferred into Mikami's role as a prosecutor. He wanted it to be clear that Mikami was evil, but, at the same time, he did not want to focus on the aspects of right and wrong. Ohba's second favorite human character in the series was Mikami as Ohba believed that Mikami was the second "strongest" character in the series "besides Light."
Ohba has no visual preferences and therefore let Obata create the visual aspects. Obata based Mikami's design on Taro Kagami, the main character in the pilot chapter of the series. He was told that Mikami was supposed to be a "stoic character like Light" while not knowing that Mikami was a prosecutor and a follower of Kira. As the series progressed, Obata drew Mikami as an "insane fanatic." Obata said that he gave Mikami glasses since "glasses are in these days." Obata added that "things were a little haphazard at this point..." His birthday is June 7, 1982.