Around 10:30 AM Kyoto Animation Studio Co.’s main studio caught fire killing at least 33 people. In the past twenty years, this is Japan’s worst mass killing.
What caused the fire at Kyoto Animation Studio?
A 41-year-old man rushed into the Kyoto Animation studio Thursday morning and poured petrol all over the building before he lit the place on fire. Some knives were also found at the scene, according to the local media. The suspect shouted ‘die’ and “drop dead” while setting the studio on fire.
Almost 70 people were present in the studio when the fire broke out. Currently, 36 are in the hospital while some are said to be in critical condition.
According to firefighters, 20 bodies were found on the stairs of the third and the top floor, 11 died on the second floor, and two bodies were found on the first floor.
Kyoto Animation, the Japanese animation studio that police say was targeted by an arsonist, was a treasure among anime fans. Here are some of the studio's most influential works. https://t.co/31WYPTwE3h
— The New York Times (@nytimes) July 18, 2019
What about the suspect?
The suspect is not a former employee and is not associated in any way. Eyewitnesses say that after setting the studio on fire, he was running to the train station when he suddenly fell.
Kyoto Animation fire: One dead after suspected arson attack https://t.co/rxcPsyLgGF
— BBC News (World) (@BBCWorld) July 18, 2019
A 59-year old woman told the news agency Kyodo,
“A person with singed hair was lying down, and there were bloody footprints.”
Another neighbor told the media,
“He seemed to be in pain, irritated and suffering, but also angry as if he was resentful. I heard him saying something like ‘You copied it.'”
He was immediately taken to the hospital and is currently under treatment. Some local media reports indicate that the man had bought 40 liters of petrol at a nearby petrol station.
Founded in 1981, Kyoto Animation Studio produced popular animes such as The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya and K-On. It is also the first successful studio outside of Tokyo.
“Help KyoAni heal,” a GoFundMe campaign has raised more than $300,00 till now. Kyoto Animation Studio is not famous only in Japan but has fans all over the world.
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