On February 21st, an elderly resident of Tokyo walked into a police station located in the Chiyoda Ward. There, near the entrance, the man produced a folding knife and began cutting into his own stomach.
According to the Tokyo Reporter blog, 72-year-old Shoji Tsuchida attempted suicide at around 11:00 a.m. Tsuchida, a resident of Yashio City, Saitama Prefecture, apparently wanted to commit seppuku, or the ancient suicide ritual of the samurais.
In seppuku, a seated individual uses a small knife to cut their stomach from left to right, then upward. This grisly practice is extremely rare in modern Japan.
After walking into the station’s waiting room, Tsuchida apparently announced that he would die if a police officer did not meet with him. Because he brought a 8.6-centimeter blade into the station, and because Tsuchida injured a 41-year-old assistant inspector during his suicide attempt, he currently faces charges of inflicting injury and violating the Swords and Firearms Control Act.
So far, Mr. Tsuchida’s only contact with the press has been his apology to the wounded police officer.
Featured image via: Tokyo Reporter