Chiba cops: Man with knife at Keyakizaka46 event fired flare

Chiba police apprehended a 24-year-old man after he was found with a knife at a event for idol group Keyakizaka 46 at Makuhari Messe on Saturday
Chiba police apprehended a 24-year-old man after he was found with a knife at an event for idol group Keyakizaka 46 at Makuhari Messe on Saturday

CHIBA (TR) – Chiba Prefectural Police on Saturday arrested a 24-year-old man who was allegedly in possession of a knife after he fired a flare at a meet-and-greet event for an all-girl idol group in Chiba City, reports NHK (June 24).

At just before 8:00 p.m., security guards at Makuhari Messe apprehended Ryohei Abe, a resident of Sapporo’s Shiroishi Ward, for igniting a signal flare at a baggage storage area near where fans had gathered to shake the hands lined up for a “handshake” event with members of Keyakizaka46.

Officers from the Chiba Nishi Police Station arriving at the scene arrested Abe on suspicion of violating the Swords and Firearms Control Law. The knife in his possession had a 12-centimeter long blade. During questioning, the suspect said that he wanted to kill one of the members.

There were no injuries in the incident. The following day, another handshake event featuring the group was held at the same venue with 20 police officers in attendance. At the entry to the venue, a message told visitors that security measures, including the use of a metal detector, had been intensified over the day before, according to Daily Sports (June 25).

Keyakizaka 46 is a sister group of AKB48. In 2014, two members of the latter, Rina Kawaei and Anna Iriyama, group received injuries by a man with a saw at a handshake event in Iwate Prefecture.

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