Japan prosecutors seek life term for man over killing doctor

0 Comment(s)Print E-mail Xinhua, November 28, 2023
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TOKYO, Nov. 28 (Xinhua) -- Japanese prosecutors on Tuesday sought a life sentence for a 68-year-old man accused of fatally shooting a doctor and attacking other medical workers last year during an 11-hour standoff with police at his home near Tokyo.

Prosecutors said at the Saitama District Court that Hiroshi Watanabe, who was charged with killing 44-year-old Junichi Suzuki with a shotgun, had the "strong intention to murder as many as he could," stressing that the accused fired at more than one person.

According to the indictment, Watanabe fatally shot Suzuki, severely injured a physiotherapist in his 40s and hospitalized another medical worker by spraying him with tear gas.

The defendant said during his first hearing that he had "never intended at all" to murder anyone, claiming instead he had aimed at the doctor's right knee but his shot went off target.

Watanabe had developed resentment and anger toward the doctor, who had been in charge of providing home medical care for his mother.

Prosecutors said the incident created a negative impression about home medical care and made medical workers feel intimidated.

The attack took place on Jan. 27 last year when three medical workers came to Watanabe's home in Saitama Prefecture for a house visit. The suspect took the staff hostage in an 11-hour standoff with police, and he was eventually arrested after the police stormed the building. Enditem

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