OSAKA – One man was killed and two others were seriously injured Sunday night in Osaka after being attacked by a group armed with knives and a baseball bat, police said.
The man who was killed was found late Sunday on a street in Ikuno Ward. The other two were found at a nearby condominium.
All three appear to be Vietnamese nationals in their 20s or 30s, the police said Monday. Their assailants may also be non-Japanese, they added.
The police are treating the case as a murder and were trying to confirm the victims’ identities. They suspect a group of several men seen leaving the scene were involved in both the man’s death and the attacks on the other two.
They are examining security camera footage from the area that shows a group of men chasing and surrounding a man before stabbing, battering and stomping on him. It also shows the attackers leaving the scene as if nothing had happened.
The man, who was pronounced dead after being taken to a hospital, sustained several stab wounds to the chest and abdomen.
The other two, believed to be around the same age as the deceased man, were hospitalized with severe wounds but were not in a life-threatening condition. One was found at the entrance to the condominium and the other on the third floor.
“As I was leaving the building, I saw one man lying in a pool of blood near the elevator and another man lying on the ground,” said a 35-year-old man who was visiting an acquaintance in the building. “One of the men I saw running away from the scene was holding a baseball bat.”
The attack happened in a residential area with several eateries about 500 meters south of Imazato Station on the Kintetsu Osaka Line.
With the suspects still at large, local residents said they were anxious.
A 79-year-old woman who lives nearby said she went outside when she heard the noise and saw a man lying on the ground.
“I heard shouts in a foreign language and the street was a pool of blood,” the woman said, adding there were blood stains in the corridors of the condominium and in the bicycle parking lot.
A motorist driving through the area said he saw the assailants get on top of the victim to stab him.
Another said: “A colleague of mine who saw the man being stabbed multiple times said he was so scared he couldn’t get to sleep.”
A restaurant manager in the area said she believes the number of non-Japanese residents in the area has climbed in recent years. “I just saw another fight involving foreign residents this summer,” she said.
The area includes elementary and junior high schools.
“I’ll do my utmost to ensure the children’s safety,” the principal of a nearby public elementary school said as parents and teachers stood guard Monday morning.