After months of hospitalization, Kyoto Prefectural Police have finally arrested the suspected Kyoto Animation arsonist Shinji Aoba. Back in July, he was the one who allegedly poured gasoline into Kyoto Animation’s Studio 1 Building and lit it on fire, killing 35 people. They would then take him to the Fushimi Police Station for questioning. The suspect would admit to the act, and he stated that he used gasoline because he thought it would kill more people.
Following his arrest, Kyoto Animation has released a statement. It reads:
“In regards to the accused, we have no additional comment. All that matters is his actions and their results. Regardless of how he may try to excuse his actions, or what remorse he may speak of after the fact, our friends whose lives were taken will not come back, nor will it help the wounds of our injured friends heal. Bereaved families and friends now have to face a permanently changed reality, as must we [at Kyoto Animation].
As a company, we obviously agree with prosecutors pursuing the maximum culpability that the law will allow.”
As revealed earlier, police waited for Aoba’s treatment to finish before making the arrest. They also took into consideration the lifting of Kyoto’s State of Emergency in relation to COVID-19. After his questioning at the Fushimi Police Station, the police would then transfer Aoba to the Osaka Detention Center, which has doctors on its staff. This is in consideration to the suspect’s health, as he recently received treatment for 3rd degree burns suffered during the incident.
Kyoto police have been awaiting to arrest Aoba for months now. However, the suspect has going through treatment with skin graftts, but lack of donor skin treatment delayed him getting well. The donor skins were prioritized for his victims, so Aoba had to get an experimental treatment with artificial skin. This was the first time it was ever done in Japan. And unfortunately for the police, he still wasn’t treated when the warrant for his arrest dropped last October, as he still had to be hospitalized.
Aoba was an entrant to various KyoAni contests, and he blamed the studio for stealing his story. He would send them threats until he finally made good on his promise last year. He brought two containers of flammable liquid to Studio 1 and lit it up. The fire killed 35 people, including many legendary anime figures like Amagi Brilliant Park director Yasuhiro Takemoto and Sound! Euphonium character designer Shouko Ikeda.
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