At a disabled living centre in Sagamihara, only 35 miles outside of Tokyo, a stabbing attack ensued after a man broke into the facility. Around 45 people were injured during the assaults, leaving 19 dead and over 20 critically injured.
A man broke into the care facility by smashing the windows with a hammer, and began stabbing patients of the care facility. The care home, the Tsukui Yamayuri En facility, catered to a wide range of handicapped patients. The centre was home to roughly 150 people, with residents ageing from 19 to 75 years old.
Staff of the facility called police around 2:30 AM to report the attacks.
Around 3:00 AM, the suspect, Satoshi Uematsu, turned himself into the police stating “I did it. It is better that disabled people disappear.” He appeared at the police station with a bag full of bloodstained knifes and other sharp-edged weapons.
Police have not reported any sort of motives for the attack. It has been reported that Uematsu had been previously hospitalised in February of this year. The 26 year-old man had sent a letter to Japan’s parliament to promote the idea of euthanasia for the disabled, stating that he would willingly carry out the killings himself if needed. A quote from the letter states: “My goal is a world in which, in cases where it is difficult for the severely disabled to live at home and be socially active, they can be euthanized with the consent of their guardians.”
Those injured in the attacks were sent to six different hospitals within Tokyo.
Police have not yet given a statement regarding the stabbings, reporting “We are still confirming details of the case.”
Mass killings are considered a very rare occurrence in Japan, with this attack being the worst the country has experienced in decades.
Wessex Scene will keep you updated as the story progresses.