Japanese reaction to knife rampage
In Japan's deadliest crime in seven years, Kato drove a rented two-tonne truck Sunday into Akihabara , a crowded Tokyo district which is the hub of Japan's comic-book and video-game subculture.
He swerved the vehicle into pedestrians, jumped out and ran into the crowds raising a survival knife in one hand and a smaller knife in the other, wounding 17 people before he was overpowered.
Four died from stab wounds and three others were killed by the truck.
Police issued a pubilc health alert on Tuesday, saying one of the wounded had hepatitis B. It urged anyone who had contact with the pools of blood on the street to come in for a health check for the potentially deadly disease.
Kato told police that he was mentally ill and prosecutors planned mental examinations to decide if he can be held accountable for the crime, the Yomiuri Shimbun evening paper said.
A strange twist to the tragic event was that it was well-documented by the on-lookers at Akihabara, the premier electronic shopping district in Tokyo.
Kato documented his anger in hundreds of online postings, some made by mobile telephone as he drove to Tokyo.
"I don't have a single friend and I won't in the future. I'll be ignored because I'm ugly," he wrote in one message in May.
"If I had a girlfriend, I wouldn't have just left my job or be addicted to my cell phone. A man with hope could never understand this," he wrote.
"I'm lower than trash because at least the trash gets recycled," he also wrote.
Kato's attack took place on the exact date of another horrendous attack in Osaka, Japan seven years ago.
Mamoru Takuma went on a rampage at Ikeda elementary school in Osaka and killed seven children.
Global Voices reported on the blogger coverage and reaction in Japan:
For a list of articles, information, and photos on the stabbing, see Akibablog [ja]. The forums are naturally full of comments [ja], and at ICHINOHE Blog [ja] there is a rundown of Twitter coverage of the incident. Blogger kawataso posted lots of photos [ja] and gave a run-down of their experience of what happened:
Kato described his plan during his ride to Tokyo
Kato, a temporary employee at an auto factory, gave a blow-by-blow description of his plan before and during his almost four-hour ride to Tokyo.
5:21AM Subject: I will kill people in Akihabara. "I will drive into a crowd of people. I will use a knife if the truck becomes unusable."
07:30AM Subject: It is raining hard. "My plans should be perfect."
10:53AM Subject: It is bumper to bumper traffic. "I hope this does not disrupt my plan."
11:45AM: Subject: I have reached Akihabara. "It looks like the streets are open to pedestrians today."
Kato posted his final messages 20 minutes before the killing, investigators said.
00:10PM Subject: The time has come.