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Osaka cops arrest man for strangling bar customer to death

Masataka Tokubo
Masataka Tokubo (Mainichi Broadcasting System)

OSAKA (TR) – Osaka Prefectural Police on Tuesday arrested a man for fatally strangling a male customer of a bar in Nishi Ward last week after the pair got into a dispute, reports the Sankei Shimbun (Dec. 6).

On Friday night, Masataka Tokubo, a resident of Kobe, allegedly strangled 65-year-old Shigeaki Naragi outside the izakaya bar, located in the Chiyozaki area.

“I didn’t do it,” the Tokubo was quoted by the Nishi Police Station in denying the allegations of murder.

At 9:20 p.m. on the day of the crime, Tokubo entered the bar and accosted Naragi. “Where are the young people?” he said to Naragi in getting close to him.

Naragi, who is a regular customer, and Tokubo exited the bar and began to fight. According to a staff member of the establishment, Tokubo jumped atop Naragi and strangled him before fleeing the scene in a taxi.

Naragi, who was vomiting blood and suffered chest injuries, died at a hospital on Sunday morning. An autopsy revealed the cause of death to be brain damage from lack of oxygen, according to police.

Tokubo became a person of interest for police after an examination of security camera footage and interviews with witnesses. Police seized clothing the suspect is believed to have worn during the crime from his residence.