National / Crime & Legal

Slain Kobe girl's blood detected at suspect's home

Kyodo

DNA tests on bloodstains at the home of a man suspected of abandoning the dismembered body of 6-year-old Mirei Ikuta have confirmed the blood is that of the elementary school first-grader, police said Monday.

They are investigating whether Yasuhiro Kimino, 47, took the girl to his home Sept. 11, the day she disappeared after school. Both victim’s and suspect’s homes are in Nagata Ward, Kobe.

Given that no traces of blood have been found in the wooded area where her severed body parts were found in plastic bags on Sept. 23, investigators believe her body was dismembered elsewhere.

Kimino, unemployed and originally from Kagoshima Prefecture, was arrested last Wednesday. An investigative source said he has not responded to the allegations against him.

Investigators spent four days through Sunday searching Kimino’s home. They detected a small amount of blood, but the police have not said where it was found.

Later Monday, an autopsy was planned on what appeared to be additional body parts found last week.

On Friday, investigators reportedly found in a drawer in the suspect’s home a knapsack with a stuffed bear, apparently the one carried by the girl when she disappeared.