Woman stabbed to death in Fukuoka; suspected culprit at large

The Yomiuri Shimbun
Police officers investigate the scene where a woman was stabbed to death near JR Hakata Station in Fukuoka on Monday.

FUKUOKA — A 38-year-old woman was stabbed to death near JR Hakata Station in Fukuoka on Monday evening, and the suspected culprit, a male estimated at 30 to 50 years of age, fled the scene and was still at large.

The victim has been identified as Miki Kawano, a 38-year-old company employee living in Nakagawa, Fukuoka Prefecture, according to prefectural police. Kawano had sustained multiple stab wounds to the head, chest and abdomen.

The prefectural police are investigating the incident as a suspected homicide and have launched a search for the man, who was dressed in black and may have fled toward Hakata Station while still in possession of the knife.

Police said they were notified by a witness shortly after 6 p.m. that “a woman has been stabbed” and that “a man was holding what appeared to be a knife.”

Kawano was found lying face-up on the ground and bleeding, and was immediately taken to a hospital in the city, where she was soon confirmed dead.

According to investigative sources, Kawano had sought consultation with the police about troubles in a personal relationship. She had moved several years ago to Nakagawa, where was living with her parents and her child, according to neighbors.

Investigators taped off the crime scene, which is located about 200 meters northwest of JR Hakata Station in an area with many business hotels and dining establishments. The incident occurred just at a time when people were heading home from work, adding to tension in the area.