Knife Attack In Japan Leaves At Least 15 Dead, Local Media Report – Huffington Post

BAG OF KNIVES

Police had recovered a bag with several knives, at least one stained with blood, the Kanagawa prefecture official said.

Police said they were still investigating possible motives.

Asahi Shimbun reported that the suspect was quoted by police as saying: “I want to get rid of the disabled from this world.” Other reports said he had held a grudge after being fired from his job at the facility.

Twenty-nine emergency squads responded to the attack, Kyodo reported, with those wounded taken to at least six hospitals in the western Tokyo area.

A man identified as the father of a patient in the facility told NHK he learned about the attack on the radio and had received no information from the center.

“I’m very worried but they won’t let me in,” he said, standing just outside a cordon of yellow crime-scene tape.

The man, who arrived at the scene around 5 a.m. (2000 GMT Monday), said he had never heard of trouble at the facility before.

NHK reported that the facility is usually locked at night but the man broke into the building by smashing a window.

The facility’s website said the center had a maximum capacity of 160 people, including staff.

The U.S. Army’s Camp Zama base is near Sagamihara in the adjacent town of Zama.

Social media went into overdrive as news of the mass stabbing broke. “I can’t stop shaking. What a terrible incident, it’s just too much,” one post on Twitter said.

Such mass killings are extremely rare in Japan and typically involve stabbings, due to Japan’s strict gun laws.

Eight children were stabbed to death at their school in Osaka by a former janitor in 2001. Seven people died in 2008 when a man drove a truck into a crowd and began stabbing people in Tokyo’s popular electronics and “anime” district of Akihabara.

A revision to Japan’s Swords and Firearms Control Law was introduced in 2009 in the wake of that attack, banning the possession of double-edged knives and further tightening gun-ownership rules.

Members of a doomsday cult killed 12 and made thousands ill in 1995 in simultaneous attacks with sarin nerve gas on five Tokyo rush-hour subway trains. (Additional reporting by William Mallard and Kaori Kaneko in Tokyo, Eric Beech in Washington and and Jon Herskovitz in Austin; Writing by Lincoln Feast; Editing by Sandra Maler, Grant McCool and Paul Tait)

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