Japanese man in Joker costume injures 17 in knife attack on Tokyo train

Japanese man in Joker costume injures 17 in knife attack on Tokyo train
Video from the incident shows people jumping out of the train as it fills with smoke. Source: Reuters
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Daily US Times: A man wearing a Joker costume attacked passengers on a Tokyo train line on Sunday evening.

As many as 17 people were injured by the 24-year-old’s attack as they headed for Halloween parties in the city.

The suspect was wearing a green shirt and purple suit, witnesses said.

He sprayed a clear liquid around the carriage and set it alight. Footage circulated in media and social media show that passengers running through carriages away from the flames while others clambered through windows.

One witness said: “I thought it was a Halloween stunt. Then, I saw a man walking this way, slowly waving a long knife.”

The attack happened at around 20:00 local time near Kokuryo station, in the city’s western suburbs.

Media reports say the suspet was arrested by police on the spot.

He told police he adored the character Joker in the Batman comics, according to news outlet Kyodo.

The Joker is a super villain in the comics and batman’s archenemy. The 2019 blockbuster cinema Joker, starring actor Joaquin Phoenix, featured a scene where he attacks several men on a train after being repeatedly harassed by them.

It’s a pivotal moment of that movie, marking the beginning of the character’s transformation into the Joker.

The NHK news agency quoted Tokyo police as saying that the suspect had said he had “wanted to kill someone since June” because he had quit his job and seen many of his friendships fall apart.

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