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Stabbing at Tokyo shrine leaves 3 people dead

at Tomioka Hachimangu Shrine
A stabbing at Tomioka Hachimangu Shrine on Thursday left three persons dead (Fuji News Network)

TOKYO (TR) – A man stabbed his older sister and girlfriend to death before committing suicide at a shrine in Koto Ward on Thursday, according to Tokyo Metropolitan Police, reports the Asahi Shimbun (Dec. 8).

At around 8:35 p.m., police received a distress call about a woman wielding a sword violently on a road near Tomioka Hachimangu Shrine. Police arriving at the scene found three persons dead and another injured.

According to police, Shigenaga Tomioka, 56, who was accompanied by his girlfriend, aged in her 30s, used a Japanese sword to fatally slash the head and chest of Nagako Tomioka, 58, who is his sister and the chief priest of the shrine, after she exited a vehicle.

The male driver of the vehicle, 33, attempted to flee the scene. However, he was pursued over a distance of about 100 meters by Shigenaga’s girlfriend, who was wielding the Japanese sword. She then slashed him in the right shoulder. He received injuries not considered life-threatening, police said.

At some point thereafter, Shigenaga fatally stabbed his girlfriend in the chest and abdomen. He then slashed his chest in taking his life, police said.

A blood-stained samurai sword and survival knife were retrieved from the scene.

Birthplace of sumo

Founded in 1627, Tomioka Hachimangu Shrine is located about 300 meters from Tokyo Metro’s Monzen-Nakacho Station. It is known as the birthplace of sumo. Two tournaments were held in the Spring and Autumn at the shrine each year as dictated by the shogunate.

According to an acquaintance of a family member, Shigenaga was the chief priest of the shrine until he was dismissed about 10 years ago. “If there was a grudge, I can only imagine it was due to the dismissal,” said the acquaintance.

Update: It was later learned that the woman referred to as the girlfriend of Shigenaga was in fact his wife, 49-year-old Mariko.