OSAKA -- Footage of a man resembling the rape suspect who escaped from a police station in an Osaka Prefecture city riding a red bicycle on the evening of Aug. 12 immediately after he fled police custody was caught on a security camera near the station, investigative sources have disclosed.
The sources also revealed that the footprint of a sandal worn by 30-year-old escapee Junya Hida was also left on the broken acrylic partition in the room from which he escaped after a consultation with his lawyer. The Osaka Prefectural Police are continuing to search for Hida's whereabouts, investigating the possibility that he stole a bicycle in his escape.
Hida finished a meeting with his lawyer in the Tondabayashi Police Station around 8 p.m. on Aug. 12 before smashing the acrylic partition and escaping. A fugitive warrant for Hida has been issued nationwide on charges of aggravated escape.
According to sources related to the investigation, the man on the red bicycle appears on the footage between 8 p.m. and 9 p.m. The man's outfit resembles that of what Hida was wearing when he was at the police station, and he was traveling by the east side of the station heading north.
Additionally, the Osaka Prefectural Police clarified that the acrylic panel in the visitation room that Hida broke to make his escape had not been replaced for roughly 30 years. It appears that many stations in the prefecture are in similar condition, and the adhesive resin has reportedly deteriorated in some stations.
(Japanese original by Takuya Murata and Haruka Ito, Osaka City News Department)