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Knife-wielding man shot dead by police on Saitama street


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What the heck?!? So, yesterday two knife-wielding men died?

this sounds like the man was trying to get someone to come close to see if he was OK. And at that point he would thrust up with the knife and stab. But since the police came instead of a defenseless Good Samaritan, he charged.

Bizarro of the bizarro.

14 ( +17 / -3 )

What's bizarre is your assessment of the situation.

-10 ( +7 / -17 )

A guy is charging at you with a knife and you fire a warning shot? That's just stupid.

-3 ( +12 / -15 )

What's bizarre is your assessment of the situation.

Reread the article. That assessment sounds pretty damn close, a woman called the cops because a guy was laying on the ground. The cops came and he got up, picking up the knife, and attacked. (based upon the article)

It very well could have happened to an innocent Samaritan instead.

13 ( +17 / -4 )

I'd like to know where the other bullets went. They fired warning shots - into what? The bullets go somewhere.

Fortunately it doesn't appear they hit anyone, since that's not being reported and probably would be. But it's a side concern I definitely have.

0 ( +11 / -11 )

I agree with Cameron's assessment.

Also agree with Strangerland's concern - two bullets on trajectorys to where? Stray bullets on a busy street??

-1 ( +6 / -7 )

Well done to the cop who got him. Japanese police need to take a harder stance like this against these knife wielding maniacs. Shoot to kill is the only way to resolve the situation peacefully

1 ( +10 / -9 )

Shoot to kill is the only way to resolve the situation peacefully

Cops here shoot to wound, which to me says that guns should be taken from their hands!

-5 ( +8 / -13 )

what's sad in this story is the fact it seems it's getting harder and harder to be a good citizen and help people in distress.

Fear of the law, fear of scammers suing you (commonplace in a neighbor country) and now you cannot even think about approaching someone to check it's pulse without the concern it might be a deadly trap. Very sad what the world turn us into.

4 ( +5 / -1 )


Shoot to kill is the only way to resolve the situation peacefully

The irony of this is too damn funny.

8 ( +14 / -6 )

Shoot to kill is the only way to resolve the situation peacefully

Sounds like a pure blood "sense-making" 'murican! Shooting to kill never brings peace. Shooting to disarm/wound/create a disadvantage in this case makes more sense.

-1 ( +8 / -9 )

Cops here shoot to wound, which to me says that guns should be taken from their hands!

as opposed the the great American model, shoot first even if the suspect is unarmed? Japanese cops are well trained and disciplined. American cops are poorly trained and over militarized, but that fear is what drives a whole industry over there. No thanks, I'll take courageous thoughtful police any day of the week.

1 ( +8 / -7 )

@simon g,

Im guessing you have zero experience in law enforcement, military, etc.

Shooting to wound - where, for example, would you aim?

On a crowded street you should be aware that if you miss your shot to the leg, or shooting the knife out of his hand like the Lone Ranger, the bullet will continue on its deadly path for a couple of kilometers at least. Ricochets? Adrenalin dump turning the shooting arm of even the most experienced police officer to licorice?

These are just some of the elements to be considered in the real world.

0 ( +10 / -10 )

The heat must be getting to people?

2 ( +2 / -0 )

It would help to say where in the city of saitama. Its a big place. Urawa? Omiya? Yono? Iwatsuki?

Moderator: It was Minuma Ward and that has now been added to the story.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Sounds like 'suicide by police'.

(Stabbing a bunch of kids is another way to ensure your suicide attempt will succeed. No backing out. If you don't die in the act, the state will take care of it.)

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Strangerland and Kestrel are spot on.

Warning shots are a terrible idea. Consider the physics. Depending on atmospheric variables such as wind, humidity, base altitude, etc., a .38-caliber bullet (like those used in Japanese police handguns) fired straight up will climb to an altitude of around 1,200-1,500 meters before coming back down at 100 meters per second. Where will it come down? That is entirely unpredictable.

Likewise, firing a warning shot horizontally but not directly at the threat is just as dangerous. You have to pick something to fire at that the bullet will neither penetrate (and continue on to an unintended target) nor ricochet off of (and continue on to an unintended target), leave yourself enough time to re-aim your weapon at the threat if they are not intimidated by your warning shot, and do it all in a fraction of a second.

If Japanese police are taught to fire a warning shot, they need to be retrained. If you un-holster your weapon when engaged by a threat, the threat should see that and already understand that it is in mortal danger (drugs/mental issues notwithstanding). Warning shots waste time and generate incalculable risk.

Likewise for shooting at anything other than the largest part of the threat. The torso is called "dead center mass" for a reason. The purpose of using a firearm in self-defense (or defense of others) is to neutralize the threat as soon as possible. And even if you were capable of choosing a much smaller part of the anatomy of a charging threat to target, arteries are located in shoulders, legs, etc., and the threat can still bleed to death before adequate medical help arrives.

These realities - and many more, including legal and financial issues - are taught in every civilian carry permit class in America. If your entire knowledge of firearms, defense scenarios, etc., comes from the entertainment industry, please take into consideration the distinct possibility that your personal opinion may not be fully informed.

2 ( +6 / -4 )

Well done, Japanese police officer.

2 ( +5 / -3 )


Sounds like a pure blood "sense-making" 'murican! Shooting to kill never brings peace. Shooting to disarm/wound/create a disadvantage in this case makes more sense.

With a knife-wielding man charging Officers Taro and Jiro ...

Officer Taro: I say, Officer Jiro. Shoot to disable it is. I’ll aim for his left lower leg and you the right lower leg. What?

Officer Jiro: Capital idea, Officer Taro!

In in the meantime the knifer has closed the distance and stabbed both policemen to death.

Good story, Sir Bentley. What!

-3 ( +4 / -7 )


Sorry, but I don't agree for a number of reasons.

Regarding the physics or a bullet fired straight up, while the velocity when coming down may cause injury if it hits someone on the head, the risk of that is very low where there are not so many people around. Certainly less risky than shooting directly at the person but missing.

We have no details, but there are other options for warning shots such as shooting at soft ground.

There were two policeman, so one can make the warning shot while the other aims at the target.

There are far more cases of accidental shootings by police officers in the USA than in Japan.

I feel safer with the approach used in Japan.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

This is the preferable way to handle all knife wielding people. Just wondering how many of the bullets fired actually hit their mark.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

The blithe indifference of simply stating "yeah, kill him." I am definitely a fan of non-lethal measures, not so much for the safety of the perpetrator, but the possible collateral damage.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Wouldn’t some type of taser gun have helped prevent killing him? Then again the guy seemed to have a death wish so fair enough...

What the hell is going through people’s minds these days and how many more are hiding out there?

2 ( +2 / -0 )

I'd like to know where the other bullets went. They fired warning shots - into what? The bullets go somewhere.

Years ago I read a manga and it said that the first bullet of a Japanese policeman is a blank so he or she can use it as warning shot without any worries. Can anyone clarify if this is true?

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Ideally in law enforcement you don’t shoot to injure/maim etc, you shoot the centre of seen mass to neutralise the threat. Period.

Perhaps the police up there might need to consider less than lethal options such as tasers.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I think in this case the police officers just acted in the right way,first fire a warning shot and then in the extreme case fire at the criminal.

1 ( +1 / -0 )


Im guessing you have zero experience in law enforcement, military, etc.

Wrong, I've taught private security personnel (who are not legally allowed to be armed with guns) self defense and detainment techniques principally utilizing Krav Maga styles. But that is not relevant to my opinion.

Shooting to wound - where, for example, would you aim?

I never said warning shot or even mentioned shooting to wound.

The whole point is many times you don't have to shoot at all when you have two cops against one suspect not armed with a firearm.

Do you want me to list the unarmed suspects that were shot to death in the states in the last 10 years? 2018 alone - 30% of killed by police blacks and 21% of killed by police whites were UNARMED! Training was my point. Well trained LEO don't need to shoot as often as people think.

If things have gotten to the stage you need to shoot a gun you need to aim center of mass and fire till the threat is over. These cops did well in that department.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

Albaleo, about your reasons...

At around 100 meters/second, a falling bullet can kill someone - and has, many, many times. It's an unnecessary risk, especially in a populated area.

Less risky than shooting directly at the person and missing: Sending a bullet to a random, unpredictable destination is less risky than trying to hit the threat? In what universe? (Also, one of the shots fired at the man did in fact miss. Was it fired by the same officer who fired the warning shot?)

Shooting at soft ground: Again, a waste of time when a threat is charging at you. (See: Tueller Drill)

Two policemen: Who have to work out in advance who will fire the warning shot, train for it in a variety of scenarios, then always patrol together.

More cases of accidental shooting by US police than Japanese police: You don't say. How often are Japanese police threatened with deadly force? Different stats there too, right? And what does that have to do with firing aimless warning shots in populated areas?

yoshisan88, I doubt it's true, and if it is, it's dangerous policy, putting an officer's safety at risk. According to the article, one officer fired a warning shot, but both officers fired a shot each at the knife-wielding man. If they're supposed to have a blank for the first shot, then one of the officers wasn't practicing that rule.

0 ( +4 / -4 )

What the hell is going on?!

Just heard that a knife wielding o-jisan was chasing a HS student today in my area.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

So I ask you was Tuesday May 28th 2019 National knife Day in Japan ?? This Idiot must of heard the news regarding the Tuesday morning stabbings in Kawasaki and thought it was now his turn to grab a knife and do some damage. GREAT JOB by the police. You never bring a knife to a gun fight, What you bring is a bigger gun then the other guy..

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Awesome. A good guy with a gun saves the day, yet again.

-6 ( +1 / -7 )

Awesome. A good guy with a gun saves the day, yet again.

A police officer... someone who should actually have authority to use one when necessary.

6 ( +7 / -1 )

Police officers fired shots..................... with one of the bullets hitting him in the abdomen.

I guarantee the ONE that hit was just a lucky shot.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

why most criminals over 40 ? also what the hell is he doing laying down on the street like that then start attacking police ?? they should have used some electric gun instead of shooting from a real gun

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Oh all these bleeding hearts against police officers using their weapons. What would you prefer them use? A rolled up newspaper? As a cop, If an obviously dangerous assailant threatens you with a knife and then comes at you with it, you stop them dead. If you don't then you let down the very society you're trying to protect. He asked for it and he got it. Move on

0 ( +3 / -3 )

Don't know the details of this incident, but a dreadful thought occurred to me: I hope this is not a case of shooting (aka killing) first and asking questions later which is the common procedure in the USA where too many cops come off as unqualified wimps who will panic and shoot to kill at the slightest movement of a (often innocent) suspect. I hope this deadly police response does not signal the thin end of a wedge leading to another Japanese police state like in the recent past.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

simon g,

I cant agree, and I dont think that any law enforcement personnel would agree either.

Two officers taking on a homicidal knifer on a city street barehanded because they dont want to use their guns on him - And when they are wounded or killed by the perpetrater and he then goes on his merry way slashing and stabbing passersby, who do we blame?

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

What's bizarre is your assessment of the situation.

The assessment is right on the money! It is common strategy for terrorist to use a minor incident that draws in a larger number of support services, witnesses or spectators. Then they detonate a secondary or larger explosion to attack the surrounding bystanders.

The old man was probably to slow to chase after people in fit of rage. It would be easier to draw people to him.

It would be even sadder if he was one of those senior citizens who are just hoping to get arrested, so they can get a place to sleep and something eat. I guess we will never know now.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Where did that other bullet go? Warning shots in an overcrowded city like Tokyo is just asking for trouble. Bad idea! Either shoot the suspect, deescalate the situation or prepare to restrain with batons, tasers, pepper spray, the long pitchfork used in schools, and some combatives.

That is easier said than done because a skilled knife fighter is more dangerous than a gun fighter in mid to close range.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Wonder why aim to abdominal position not leg or knee???

@Kestrel, yes, me too (I cant agree, and I don't think that any law enforcement personnel would agree either).

It seems over reaction by police due to Noborito case yesterday.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Don't know the situation but why our two police officers can't chess a knife-wielding man without Gun???

1 ( +2 / -1 )


I cant agree, and I dont think that any law enforcement personnel would agree either.

you questioned my bona fides, but still disagree, interesting.

I'm not sure where you are from but many countries don't have officers with side arms and I've seen personally, more than once, very angry and motivated individuals with a knife arrested with very little lethal force used. Depends if the cops are well trained or not, my original point. When the only target of a knife attack is a cop, he should be able to use a baton or taser and eliminate the threat I suspect that after the Kawazaki attack they were taking no chances this time. This is Japan, not some other gun-ridden country we are talking about.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

An aging society with no social support means old people are driven to extremes. Sounds to me like he was angry at the state and wanted to go out fighting.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

What?? that is fake news. He committed suicide man!!!

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Officer Taro: I say , Officer Jiro, we're being charged by a maniac with a big knife! You look for an area of soft ground with no hidden rocks to fire a warning shot. Meanwhile, I will - ........

The End

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

Do Japanese police generally carry tasers or pepper spray? Since the police would most often not be up against someone wielding a firearm, I would hope that they have a less than lethal option and certainly not warning shots. I'm by no means suggesting that they shouldn't carry guns too, but this seemed like the perfect scenario to utilize a taser as a first option to resolve the situation since there were two officers.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

simon g,

Im not allowed to disagree?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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