Man Arrested in Saitama Fatal Hostage Standoff

Society

Fujimino, Saitama Pref., Jan. 28 (Jiji Press)--Japanese police arrested a man who fired a shotgun and took a doctor hostage in a house in Fujimino, Saitama Prefecture, near Tokyo, on suspicion of attempted murder Friday morning.

At around 8 a.m. (11 p.m. Thursday GMT), about 11 hours after the incident broke out, Saitama prefectural police officers burst into the house and arrested the suspect, Hiroshi Watanabe, 66, a resident of this house, sources said.

The hostage, Junichi Suzuki, was shot in the chest. The 44-year-old doctor, who ran a clinic providing a home visit nursing service, was confirmed dead after being taken to hospital.

Watanabe's 92-year-old mother used the service, but she died on Wednesday. Following her death, seven staff members of the clinic were told to visit the house. Suzuki, who had attended her on her deathbed, was among the seven.

At around 9:15 p.m. Thursday, the police received an emergency call from a neighbor of Watanabe saying that gunshots were heard.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press