At around 8:30 p.m. on December 16, the body of Miki Kuroda, a 37-year-old nail artist, was found by male acquaintances inside her third-floor apartment in Matsuyama City, Ehime Prefecture.
According to prefectural police, she had been beaten and stabbed with a kitchen knife.
With one month having passed since the grisly discovery, law enforcement remains thoroughly stumped as to identifying a suspect, reports Shukan Jitsuwa (Jan. 22).
“On afternoon of her murder, Kuroda was out with a number of friends for lunch,” says an investigator. “At around 2:00 p.m., the group broke up and each member departed for home. According to the results of the autopsy, she died at around 4:30 p.m.”
She suffered deep knife wounds in her neck, extending to the carotid artery.
“Additionally, there are marks indicating that she had been beaten and strangled,” continues the investigator. “It was a violent assault.”
Police did not find a weapon, but pieces of skin from the perpetrator were discovered under the nails of the victim.
“It appears she put up a fight,” says the source.
According to the investigator, Kuroda had consulted with friends about a persistent stalker. Police are now following up this lead.
“Kuroda had been married previously,” says a local news reporter. “But (at the time of her murder) she was divorced and living alone.”
Her primary means of support came via a part-time job at a restaurant, but she also pursued the craft of nail art.
“She was a very attractive and popular woman,” continues the aforementioned reporter.
As to Kuroda’s popularity, that seemed to be especially the case with men, a number of whom — of various ages — had been witnessed entering and leaving her apartment.
On the night of her murder, she was supposed to attend a year-end party for a local basketball team that she managed. When she did not arrive at the event, two staff members of the team subsequently visited her apartment.
“Since the scope of her acquaintances is so vast, the investigation is showing signs of difficulty,” says the local news reporter. (K.N.)
Source: “Bukimina sutookaa no kage Ehime-ken Matsuyama-shi 37-sai bijin neirisuto satsugai jiken no fukamaru nazo,” Shukan Jitsuwa (Jan. 22, page 221)