• Kyodo

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Police are probing the strangling deaths of a woman and her three daughters in Hokkaido, suspecting that her husband killed them before taking his own life early Wednesday by driving his van into a large truck.

Investigators suspect delivery firm worker Tsuyoshi Wakiyama, 33, strangled his wife, Naomi, 28; and their daughters, Yuki, 10, Saki, 7, and Ami, 3; at his home in Kuromatsunai before he died in the crash at around 3:30 a.m. in the town of Yakumo, about 60 km away.

Police found the mother and children dead in their beds at around 7:50 a.m. when they visited the house to notify them of Wakiyama’s death.

There were no signs of any struggle in the house, and the front door was left unlocked. Police sources said investigators believe the case may be a murder-suicide.

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