• Kyodo, Staff Report


A man has been arrested for allegedly stretching a steel wire across a promenade in Higashiosaka, Osaka Prefecture, last week and injuring a bicyclist, police said.

Toshikazu Tachibana, 69, an employee at an “okonomiyaki” (Japanese-style pancake) restaurant in Higashiosaka, is suspected of attempted murder of the man on the bicycle, who sustained minor injuries to his mouth, the police said Monday.

Tachibana has admitted stringing the wire across the promenade but denied intending to kill anybody, according to the police.

He reportedly set up the wire trap on the path near his home, where only pedestrians and bicycles are allowed, between 6:55 p.m. and 7:10 p.m. on Jan. 14. The wire was strung about 1.4 to 1.6 meters above the ground.

Local media reports said the wire was some 1 mm in diameter and possibly strong enough to pull someone off a bicycle.

Tachibana surfaced as the suspect based on a report from a witness, the police said.

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