Seven Dead in Rampage in Tokyo Video Game District

Seven are dead in Tokyo after a 25-year-old man plowed his truck through a crowd of people, then pulled a knife and stabbed 18. The attack happened Sunday afternoon in Tokyo's Akihabara Electric Town, a district well known to video game, comic book and cosplay enthusiasts.

The victims range in age from 19 to 74 and include five men and one woman. Details still are coming in as to the identity and condition of others. Eleven more were wounded in the knife attack, two of them critically.

UPDATE: BBC News, quoting Kyodo News, reports the suspect's name is Tomohiro Kato, 25, and he is in custody. The female victim was 21 years old. An eyewitness account said Kato "jumped on top of a man he had hit with his vehicle and stabbed him with a knife many times. Walking toward Akihabara station, he slashed nearby people at random.'' There are more details and video on the BBC link.

Police said the man drove a rented truck into a crowd, then jumped from the vehicle with a knife to stab those he'd knocked down. "The suspect told police that he came to Akihabara to kill people," Jiro Akaogi, a spokesman for the Tokyo Metropolitan Police Department, told The Associated Press. "He said he was tired of life. He said he was sick of everything."

Akihabara is described by some as an otaku mecca, especially for manga and anime enthusiasts. The district is well known for its Golden Mile, home of numerous video game parlors occupying several floors. Cosplayers can typically find an entire floor catering to them in Akihabara's department stores.

We'll update this story as more rolls in - of course when Brian Ashcraft is available I'll ask if he has any local perspective on the story. It's dominating Japanese media right now, as you can well imagine it would.

At Least Seven Killed in Tokyo Stabbing Spree [CNN.com via AP]

Akihabara - The Electric Heart of of Asia

[Angelfire]