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Woman left with severe injuries after stabbing on Yokohama shopping street

The site where a woman was found stabbed is seen in Yokohama's Kanagawa Ward, Kanagawa Prefecture, on Nov. 11, 2018. (Mainichi/ Hong Minhyang)

YOKOHAMA -- A woman was found with severe injuries after she was apparently stabbed on a shopping street in this city's Kanagawa Ward, just south of Tokyo, in the early hours of Nov. 11, police said.

Ayu Hirose, 34, a company employee living nearby, was found by a man delivering newspapers at around 3:30 a.m. at Oguchi-dori Shopping Street near Oguchi Station on the JR Yokohama Line in Kanagawa Ward in the Kanagawa prefectural capital of Yokohama.

Kanagawa Prefectural Police said that Hirose was stabbed in the upper body with something resembling a knife. She was quoted as telling police, "An unknown man stabbed me."

Police believe that the incident might be a random attack and are searching for the man on suspicion of attempting to murder her, while analyzing footage of security cameras and conducting other investigations.

According to investigative sources, Hirose was stabbed several times from behind on her way home alone after stopping at a convenience store near the shopping street.

Yasuhiko Tamaki, 60, the owner of a newspaper delivery business who reported the incident to police, told the Mainichi Shimbun that he heard someone scream "help me" while he was making deliveries. Right after that, a barefooted woman wearing a white sweater came from the south side of the shopping street while holding her left side and asked for help, saying, "I was stabbed in the back by a man."

A woman in her 70s, who runs a clothing store, saw a person who appeared to be a police officer encourage the victim, saying, "An ambulance is coming, so hang in there." The store owner said, "I have never experienced such an incident. I'm scared."

(Japanese original by Tumuki Nakamura and Hong Minhyang, Yokohama Bureau)

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