Kyoto Animation arson suspect identified as Shinji Aoba

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Kyoto Animation arson suspect identified as Shinji Aoba
Kyoto Animation arson suspect identified as Shinji Aoba

Japan’s Kyoto Fushimi police have identified the 41 year old arson suspect as Shinji Aoba (青葉真司), who had set fire to Kyoto Animation Studio yesterday Thursday morning on 18 Jul 2019.

According to a report from NHK, Shinji Aoba is a resident of Saitama City, near Tokyo.

The fire at Kyoto Animation’s 1st Studio had claimed at least 33 lives. Around 70 staff were inside the building when it was set on fire.  At least 36 other people have been injured and hospitalized.

The Kyoto Animation studio “did not have any sprinklers or indoor hydrants installed” according to a report from Reuters.

A Kyoto Fire Department official said the studio was not legally required by the fire code because the building was classified as an “office”, it was not required to have such equipment.

According to a report from The New York Times, a neighbor of the Studio said he saw women jumping from the building’s second floor. “They were so badly burned that blood was coming from their noses, and all of their clothes but their underwear were gone.”

Shinji Aoba had told police, “I did it!” when he was when he was detained. He admitted to have started the fire because he believed that Kyoto Animation studio had plagiarized his novel, media said on Friday.

Shinji Aoba is currently being treated at the hospital for severe burns. Investigators plan to question him when his condition improves.

Shinji Aoba did not work for Kyoto Animation. He had previously served time in prison for robbery of a convenience store east of Tokyo in 2012 and has been treated for mental illness.

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