NEVSEHIR, TURKEY – Turkish investigators took a second man into custody Thursday over the deadly knife attack this week on two Japanese women in Cappadocia, central Turkey, and a local source said this suspect admitted stabbing them.
According to the investigative source, 24-year-old mechanic Fatih Uyar said he acted alone in attacking the women Monday.
One of the victims, Mai Kurihara, a 22-year-old student at Niigata University, was killed. The other woman, also a senior at the university, was stabbed several times and remains hospitalized.
A 26-year-old electrical engineer, the first suspect, was detained Tuesday over the attack on the two tourists. He denied involvement and was released Thursday, his lawyer said.
According to a media report and local authorities, Uyar told investigators during questioning that he quarreled with the two women after the car he was driving bumped into a bicycle near the site of the attack. He then attacked them with a knife, took money and valuables from them and fled the scene.
A bicycle rental shop in Goreme, a town in Cappadocia, said it loaned out mountain bikes to the two women.
Police found a knife in a nearby river after following up on Uyar’s statement that he had thrown the knife into the river. They also found items that appeared to belong to the women in his home.
Meanwhile, the lawyer of the earlier suspect quoted him as saying he was not at the scene when the incident occurred Monday as he was driving and doing other things with a friend.
Local media had earlier reported that the surviving victim had identified the released man as the suspect when they showed her a photo of him.
Kurihara’s parents arrived Wednesday night in Ankara, where their daughter’s body had been taken for an autopsy, the Japanese Embassy said.
The parents saw their daughter’s body after arriving, according to a person familiar with the situation. The parents are expected to return her body to Japan soon.