3 dead after shooting, stabbing attack in central Japan

TOKYO (AP) — Three people, including two police officers, were killed Thursday in Nagano, central Japan, and a suspect with a gun and knife hid in a house, police said.

They said two women later escaped from the house. NHK public television said one of the women told police that the attacker is her son and that his father is president of the city assembly. Police have not commented on the report.

A witness previously told NHK that a woman fell while being chased by the suspect, who then stabbed her with a knife and shot at two police officers as they arrived at the scene in a patrol car in the town of Nakano in Nagano Prefecture.

The witness said he asked the suspect why he attacked her, and he replied that he wanted to kill her, NHK said.

The three victims were taken to a nearby hospital, where they were later pronounced dead, police said. A fourth injured person could not be rescued because he was near the suspect, Kyodo news agency reported.

Video on NHK showed police wearing body armor and carrying shields, with an ambulance nearby. The area is located in a quiet farming area.

Police described the suspect as a man wearing a camo suit, hat, mask and sunglasses, Kyodo News said. Police declared the area within 300 meters (330 yards) of the site a no-go zone and city officials urged people in the area to stay home.

Other details, including the suspect and motive, were not immediately known.

Violent crime is rare in Japan. It has strict gun control laws and only a handful of gun-related crimes per year. But recent years have seen some high-profile cases of random subway stabbings and arson attacks, and there’s a growing concern about homemade weapons and explosives.

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