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1/25/2018 7:38:29 AM
Posted: 7/7/2001 6:10:26 AM EST
http://www.latimes.com/wires/20010707/tCB00V0141.html Stabbing Suspect to Get Mental Test Saturday, July 7, 2001 Stabbing Suspect to Get Mental Test TOKYO-- A Japanese court on Saturday approved a psychiatric evaluation of the suspect in a knife attack at an elementary school in western Japan that killed eight children, news reports said. The Osaka District Court approval allows prosecutors to keep Mamoru Takuma, 37, in custody for three months to determine his competency to take criminal responsibility for the crime, Kyodo News agency reported. The court and the Osaka District Public Prosecutors office were closed Saturday. Takuma was arrested for allegedly slashing eight schoolchildren to death and injuring 13 other children and two teachers after storming into the Ikeda Elementary School in Osaka on June 8. Police have quoted the accused killer, a former janitor with a history of mental illness, as saying that he wanted to be put to death for the crime. After the three-month psychiatric evaluation, prosecutors will decide whether Takuma can be charged with murder and attempted murder. Takuma was accused in 1999 of slipping tranquilizers into the tea of four teachers at the school where he worked as a janitor. Diagnosed as a schizophrenic, he was never charged and was sent to a mental hospital. He was later released. The school attack shocked Japan and prompted calls for increased school security. Copyright © 2001 Los Angeles Times
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