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Kanagawa: Pair nabbed over murder of woman in Hiratsuka

Yoshiki Saito
Yoshiki Saito (TV Asahi)

KANAGAWA (TR) – Kanagawa Prefectural Police have arrested two men over the murder of an elderly woman whose body was found her residence in Hiratsuka City last year, reports NHK (Jan. 15).

Yoshiki Saito, 23-year-old resident of Tokyo’s Ota Ward, and Kaede Kawashima, a 22-year-old resident of Nara Prefecture, have been accused of trespassing into the residence of Hiroko Toriumi, 80, and strangling her to death.

As reported previously, the body of Toriumi was found atop a bed on the first floor of her residence by a relative on February 22, 2017. Her body did not have any external injuries. The results of an autopsy revealed the cause of death to be suffocation due to pressure applied around the neck.

Saito, who was arrested on Monday, became a person of interest after police learned the truck he is believed to have used to flee the scene was spotted in the area of the residence, according to TV Asahi (Jan. 15). Kawashima was arrested over a separate incident last month.

Toriumi lived alone. At the time of the incident, police suspected that the perpetrator gained access to the residence by breaking a window on the first floor.

Police are now seeking a motive for a crime. The suspects have also been accused of robbery.

Update: Police have also accused the suspects of stealing a fare card for a transportation network that belonged to the woman. Security camera footage showed the suspects using the card, police said, according to Nippon News Network (Jan. 16).