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Kochi: Man, 37, accused of stabbing female hitchhiker

KOCHI (TR) – Kochi Prefectural Police have arrested a 37-year-old man over the alleged stabbing of a female hitchhiker in Nankoku City, reports NHK (Nov. 30).

At around 7:20 p.m. on Monday, Takuya Kitaoka surrendered at the Nankoku Police Station. He was then accused of attempted murder.

Kitaoka allegedly stabbed the woman, a college student aged in her 20s, in the abdomen after picking her up on a road with his vehicle at around 11:40 a.m. the day before.

After the incident, Kitaoka fled the scene on foot. Police later obtained a warrant for his arrest.

The victim later told police that she “was not acquainted” with Kitaoka.

A man allegedly stabbed a female hitchhiker in Nankoku City on Sunday (Twitter)

“She grabbed the knife”

Kitaoka is a livestock worker at a ranch. The victim lives in another prefecture.

Upon his surrender on Monday, Kitaoka was accompanied by his boss. Police did not reveal whether the suspect admitted to the allegations.

However, a colleague of the suspect has said that he told them he did not carry out the stabbing prior to his arrest.

According to Fuji News Network (Dec. 1), one colleague said, “She grabbed the knife and stabbed herself in the abdomen. She then bolted the vehicle.”

Kitaoka also fled the vehicle after he became scared. He couldn’t go home because he knew the police were waiting for him.

As a result, he spent Sunday night in the mountains near the ranch. His boss found him at around 5:00 p.m. on Monday, according to the network.

“He appears to have spent the night in the cold,” the colleague added. “He hadn’t eaten at all.”

The knife in question is used in Kitaoka’s work on the ranch. When the woman fled the vehicle, she took the knife and later dumped it.

The woman suffered injuries that will require two weeks to heal. Kitaoka is expected to be sent to prosecutors on Wednesday.