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Man arrested for attempting to kill girl contemplating suicide

TOKYO (Kyodo) -- Police arrested a 28-year-old man in Tokyo on Wednesday on suspicion of attempting to murder a teenage girl he became acquainted with on social media who was contemplating suicide, in a reminder of mass murders that shocked Japan last fall.

    The suspect was identified as Kazunari Saito, a newspaper delivery man in Hachioji, western Tokyo. He allegedly contacted the girl, who had expressed suicidal thoughts on Twitter, by sending a message in late December saying he could kill her, and lured her to his room in a dormitory run by his employer on Tuesday where he attempted to strangle her with string.

    The girl escaped from the room in the early hours of Wednesday after Saito left for work, and called her father for help, the police said.

    Saito admitted to the allegations, saying he tried to kill her because she "asked for" it, they said.

    Last October, Takahiro Shiraishi was taken into custody after the police found multiple dismembered bodies in cooling boxes in his apartment in Zama, Kanagawa Prefecture. He is suspected of strangling and dismembering nine people, many of whom posted suicidal thoughts on Twitter before being approached by Shiraishi online and lured to his apartment.

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