Fuji TV: Suspect in High School Girl's Killing Was 'Anime Otaku'
posted on by Sarah Nelkin
High school student and aspiring actress Saaya Suzuki was stabbed to death in Tokyo's Mitaka district on her way home from school on October 8. After the girl died due to blood loss from her neck, a 21-year-old suspect wearing a purple turban was apprehended and identified as Charles Thomas Ikenaga, a Japanese citizen of half-Japanese descent.
Fuji TV and other Japanese television stations emphasized in their coverage that the suspect is a fan of anime. In a Fuji TV interview, one of his classmates from high school told reporters that he was interested in anime featuring females, had bishōjo posters on his wall, and taught himself dances from anime and reenacted them. “He was kind of weird,” the female classmate told reporters. The station also posted a bulletin in the top-right hand corner of the news program, which read, “'Anime otaku' called his mother after committing crime.”
Ikenaga had been allegedly stalking Suzuki, and Suzuki had contacted the police about this complaint. According to the police, Ikenaga hid in her bedroom closet until she came home. After hearing her confirm her safety to a police officer as she reached the door of her home on October 8, Ikenaga reportedly became enraged, and stabbed her in the neck with a knife. A neighbor walking by with his dog called the authorities when he found Suzuki on the ground.
According to police, the two were friends over Facebook prior to the alleged stalking, and had dated for a time. Ikenaga had reportedly lied to Suzuki and told her that he was a college student, although he had not attended college after graduating from high school. Last September, Ikenaga went to America for a trip, and Suzuki contacted him, saying that she was breaking up with him. After his return to Japan in March, he reportedly began stalking the victim, and in June, Suzuki began blocking all phone calls and emails from Ikenaga. After this, the suspect allegedly began sending Line (Japanese messaging application) texts to Suzuki's friend, saying, “I'll kill you.” Suzuki told her friend to block his address.