Death sought for suspect in Ibaraki stabbing spree
Saturday 14th November, 2009

Prosecutors on Friday sought the death sentence for a man indicted for deadly stabbings in Tsuchiura, Ibaraki Prefecture, that left two people dead and seven others injured. At the Mito District Court, prosecutors said Masahiro Kanazawa, 26, ‘‘wanted to end his boring days’’ with the death sentence he thought he would get by going on the stabbing spree at Arakawaoki Station in March 2008.

The defense counsel asked for life imprisonment, saying giving him the death penalty would only reward him with what he had wanted. Kanazawa was also accused of fatally stabbing a 72-year-old man at the victim’s home in Tsuchiura four days before the stabbing spree. He has admitted to stabbing the nine people in the two cases.

His defense counsel argued that it was questionable whether he was mentally competent as he was obsessed with the idea that he would go to a fantasy world if he died. But the prosecutors said his motive made sense and that he could be held responsible.

Two psychiatrists who examined Kanazawa also concluded that he was mentally competent to take responsibility for the crime.