Doctor killed in Saitama hostage situation: police take 11 hours

Doctor killed in Saitama hostage situation: police take 11 hours

Kanako Mita and Sawako Utsumi

Modern Tokyo Time

Japanese police waited nearly 11 hours before finally entering the home of an elderly hostage taker. Hiroshi Watanabe, 66, was angry at the treatment of his deceased elderly mother. Therefore, after three workers entered his home at 9 p.m. from the clinic responsible for the care of his deceased mother, he set out to exact revenge in cold blood.

Surprisingly, although an injured escapee reported that his two colleagues had been shot at 9:15 p.m., the police did not enter until around 8:00 a.m.

Therefore, if the police knew that two people had been shot and were either dead – or needed emergency help – then why wait so long?

The incident took place in the vicinity of Fujimino, Saitama. This part of Saitama is relatively quiet and major police incidents are rare.

Watanabe, who killed respected doctor Junichi Suzuki (aged 44), said: “I’m angry with them because of their care.” This is his deceased mother.

In addition to shooting Suzuki, the killer also shot a physiotherapist and wounded another colleague who managed to escape. The escaped individual notified the police at the local Higashi-Iruma police station. However, even if he knew that two people had been shot, it would be around 11 hours before he entered Watanabe’s house.

Lee Jay Walker says, “It appears that the three health workers visited Watanabe’s home regarding the need to pay their respects after the death of Watanabe’s mother. However, Watanabe intended to kill as he immediately shot two people and held them hostage as Suzuki needed emergency help.

Suzuki has occasionally been seen on television as he took extra time to care for patients suffering from Covid-19 (coronavirus) at home. He treated patients in Fujimi, Fujimino and the Miyoshi area.

However, in Suzuki’s hour of need, the police and others involved in the hostage crisis simply waited hour after hour. It was good that the police knew that two people had been shot.

This raises the question, “Why did it take so long to get into Watanabe’s house given all the information the police had?”

Suzuki will be remembered for his dedication.

It is hoped that the other healthcare worker will survive his injuries.


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