The Yomiuri ShimbunKAWASAKI — Many people brought flowers and prayed at the scene of a fatal stabbing attack near Noborito Station in Kawasaki on Wednesday, a day after elementary school students were attacked there by a 51-year-old man.
Students at elementary schools near the scene went to school in groups on Wednesday morning, under the watchful eye of people including local residents and police officers. Private schools using schoolbuses also strengthened their security measures across the board.
The mass stabbing incident has sent shock waves through the nation.
A 49-year-old housewife in Setagaya Ward, Tokyo — whose daughter is a sixth-grade elementary school student like Hanako Kuribayashi, who was killed in the attack — offered a prayer at the scene after accompanying her child to the school gate.
“I have a daughter in the sixth grade, so this is not just somebody else’s problem to me. I wonder what could have been done to protect her life,” the woman said.
At the municipal Noborito Elementary School, which is about 600 meters from the crime scene, volunteer school guards accompanied students to the school and took detours to avoid the crime scene, which is part of a commuting route. Several police officers stood guard in front of the school gate.
A 71-year-old man leading the school guard volunteers said: “We had to take detours. Children and their parents are scared.”
One of those who joined the volunteer guards was a woman in her 40s with a fifth-grade daughter. “We adults have to step up. I want to do what I can,” she said.