• Kyodo


A 52-year-old man was arrested early Wednesday for allegedly fatally stabbing a woman and wounding her daughter at their home in Sakai, Osaka Prefecture, the previous day.

Police quoted the suspect, Hiroshi Sono, whom they described as unemployed, as claiming he had been dating the victim, Kyoko Umei, 46, a housewife, and stabbed her because she treated him coldly when he visited her house Tuesday morning.

According to police, Sono went to Umei’s house in Sakai at around 10:10 a.m., and stabbed her in the chest and other parts of her body in the entrance hall. Umei later died at a hospital due to loss of blood.

Umei’s 21-year-old daughter, Kanna, who rushed to the doorway after hearing her mother scream, was also stabbed by Sono, who escaped on foot. The daughter suffered injuries requiring three weeks to heal, police said.

Kanna told police she had heard her mother quarreling with somebody before she was stabbed, leading police to believe the perpetrator was an acquaintance, they said.

Investigators then learned that Umei started dating Sono around March, and that she recently told friends that she wanted to break off the relationship.

Police have also found that the suspect had made frequent phone calls to Umei until shortly before the attack, the officials said.

“I went to (Umei’s house), but I killed her after she treated me coldly,” police quoted the suspect as saying.

He was carrying the murder weapon — a knife with a 5-cm-long blade — when he was arrested. He said he picked it up at a park on his way to the victim’s house.

Sono is not married and lived alone with his mother. He phoned his mother early Wednesday and said he planned to kill himself.

Then a police investigator called Sono and persuaded him to surrender, and he was arrested when he showed up on a street near the police station, the officials said.

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