TOKYO (TR) – Tokyo Metropolitan Police on Wednesday arrested a male university student over the killing of a woman whose corpse was found inside a love hotel last week, reports the Yomiuri Shimbun (Sept. 18).
Sometime between around 6:00 p.m. and 8 p.m. on September 12, Mizuki Kitajima, 22, is alleged to have fatally strangled Hiromi Araki, 36, inside a second-floor room of the hotel, located in the Ikebukuro area of Toshima Ward.
“I used my hands,” the resident of Iruma City, Saitama Prefecture told police in admitting to the allegations.
At around 8:30 p.m. on September 12, a male cleaning staff member reported the discovery of Araki’s body.
Officers arriving the scene found the body, bent at the knees, stuffed inside a plastic bag covered by a sheet. As well, her ankles had been bound with rope and her wrists with adhesive tape.
After the discovery, police said that the results of an autopsy revealed that that Araki died due to suffocation.
“I am going to the hospital”
At 3:00 p.m. on September 12, Araki departed her residence in Koto Ward. “I am going to the hospital,” she told a family member. She never returned.
At around 3:40 p.m., a young man is shown entering the room with a suitcase in security camera footage. Araki, wearing a hat and carrying a backpack, enters the same room about two hours later. At around 7:40 p.m., the man is seen exiting the room by himself. He later heads in the direction of JR Ikebukuro Station.
When Araki’s body was found, the hat and backpack were missing, police said.
On Wednesday morning, police took Kitajima in for voluntary questioning. A search of his residence resulted in the discovery of items belonging to Araki.
Police are now examining the mobile telephone of Kitajima as the investigation continues. The suspect is believed to have deleted messages he exchanged via a social-networking service, investigative sources told NHK (Sept. 19).