Thursday, 14 December, 2017

'Samurai Sword' Attack At Tokyo Shrine Leaves 3 Dead

Japan has one of the lowest rates of violent crime in the developed world and attacks involving weapons of any kind are unusual Japan has one of the lowest rates of violent crime in the developed world and attacks involving weapons of any kind are unusual
Lucia Summers | 08 December, 2017, 10:33

One man and one woman were killed and two others injured on Thursday night in a knife attack in Tokyo, local police said.

A blood-stained samurai sword and survival knife were retrieved from the scene.

After attacking his sister, Shigenaga Tomioka apparently killed his female companion and then himself, the police sources added.

The attacker was the chief priest of the shrine more than a decade ago, but was demoted from the post and succeeded by his sister.

Authorities suspect a row between the brother and sister over the shine's chief priest position had prompted the apparent murder-suicide.

At around 8:35 p.m., police received a distress call about a woman wielding a sword violently on a road near Tomioka Hachimangu Shrine.

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The four were sent to a hospital, where the three were confirmed dead. Media reports said he was her younger brother.

Police have been searching for the attacker. At a spot about 100 meters away from the vehicle, she slashed his right shoulder, leaving him with a non-life-threatening injury.

After slashing the priestess, Shigenaga Tomioka then stabbed a younger woman he was with to death with a sword, before killing himself, police said.

Tokyo's Metropolitan Police believe that Shigenaga Tomioka, 56, and his girlfriend, thought to be in her 30s, ambushed his 58-year-old sister, Nagako Tomioka, who was the shrine's chief priestess.

Tomioka Hachimangū, established in 1927, has a close link with sumo, and the emperor and empress visited in 2012.

Shigenaga sent a threatening letter to his sister in 2006, saying he would "send her to hell", newspaper Sankei Shimbun said. The shrine, located roughly 100 meters east of Monzen-Nakacho Station, is also the birthplace of the Edo-period fundraising sumo.

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