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19 Killed, 25 Injured in Japan Stabbing Spree

by Arata Yamamoto and Tim Stelloh /  / Updated 
Police officers are seen in front of a facility for the disabled where at least 19 people were killed and as many as 20 wounded by a knife-wielding man, in Sagamihara, Kanagawa prefecture, Japan, in this photo taken by Kyodo July 26, 2016.KYODO / Reuters

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Nineteen people were killed and 25 were injured by a man with a knife early Tuesday at a facility for disabled people in Japan, officials said.

An official from the Sagamihara City municipal government emergency task force told NBC News that nine men and 10 women were among the dead. Twenty suffered serious wounds, the official said, adding that the remaining five were medium to light injuries.

 Police officers are seen in front of a facility for the disabled where at least 19 people were killed and as many as 20 wounded by a knife-wielding man, in Sagamihara, Kanagawa prefecture, Japan, in this photo taken by Kyodo July 26, 2016. KYODO / Reuters

The stabbings occurred early Tuesday morning at Tsukui Yayayurien — a facility with 160 residents — in Sagamihara, west of Tokyo, Shinya Sakuma, Director of Health and Welfare for Kanagawa Prefecture, told reporters during a news conference.

Sakuma identified the alleged killer as a former employee, Satoshi Uematsu. Public broadcaster NHK reported that Uematsu is 26.

Shortly after 2 a.m. Tuesday local time, Sakuma said, Uematsu allegedly broke into the facility by shattering a window. National broadcaster and NBC News partner Nippon TV reported that he then tied up a staff member, stole a set of keys and began entering rooms and stabbing residents.

After Uematsu fled the scene, Sakuma said, he drove to a police station and surrendered.

Citing police sources, one of Japan's largest daily newspapers, Asahi Shimbun, quoted the suspect saying "All disabled should cease to exist."

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