A knife attack at the Tsukui Yamayuri En (Tsukui Lily Garden) facility in Sagamihara, which is near Tokyo, in the early hours of Tuesday led to the death of at least 19 people, while 26 others have been injured, of whom 20 are said to have sustained serious injuries. The attacker apparently claimed he wanted to kill differently-abled people
The staff at the facility are said to have called police at about 2:30 a.m. local time.The suspect, whom the Japanese media identified as one Satoshi Uematsu, was well into the attack by that time. The 26-year-old had worked at the facility until February, and had managed to enter the facility by a window at 2 a.m. on Tuesday, according to the local police.
After the attack, Uematsu is said to have turned himself in at the Sagamihara police station by 3 a.m. Sources say his clothes were stained with blood, as was the knife he brought with him, which is believed to be the murder weapon.
The incident is believed to be one of the worst mass killings in the country since World War II, and because owning a gun in Japan is subject to strict regulations, mass killings in the country -- when they happen -- are usually perpetrated with poison and knives or other other such sharp blades.
One such example is the Tokyo subway attack of 1995, in which a cult had released the poisonous sarin gas -- something usually used in chemical warfare -- at five locations across the entire subway routes, leading to the deaths of 12 people. At least 50 other people were believed to have been severely affected by the gas, besides 5,000 others who complained of vision loss.
It may be worth noting that even that toll was lower than the death toll from Sunday's knife attack. One of the members of the cult that perpetrated the 1995 attack was arrested in 2012 from Sagamihara, where Sunday's attack took place.