National / Crime & Legal

Shiga man faces attempted murder charge for shoving woman on crowded Kobe train platform

Kyodo

A 53-year-old man was arrested Tuesday on suspicion of trying to kill a woman by pushing against her on a crowded train platform at JR Sannomiya Station in Kobe, causing her to lose her balance and brush against a train, police said.

The police said Koichi Kubo, an unemployed man from Higashiomi, Shiga Prefecture, pushed Kaoru Akagawa, 43, at around 6:25 p.m. during rush hour after their shoulders touched each other. Akagawa stumbled and brushed against an arriving train, slightly injuring her right palm, they said.

Kubo denied trying to kill the woman, claiming he does not remember what happened, according to the police.

Akagawa, an artist who lives in Germany, was temporarily back in Japan with her 45-year-old husband, who reported the incident to the police.

A station employee said he was shocked that such an incident occurred, because staff had been on alert after a 63-year-old woman was pushed off a train platform in Osaka on Dec. 11.

A 23-year-old woman from Yokosuka, Kanagawa Prefecture, who was on her way to a relative’s house in Kobe, asked why there are no safety barriers on the platform of a major station like Sannomiya.

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