By now we all know the grisly details of the Kyoto Animation arson that took place in July 2019, committed by a man named Shinji Aoba from Saitama. The attack on the beloved studio left over 30 people dead and another 30 with various injuries.
On May 27th, Aoba was finally deemed healthy enough to be transferred to a dedicated detention facility where he was formally arrested for the attack. According to one report, when the warrant was read to him, Aoba had no idea how many people he had killed and was unapologetic for his actions.
In an update, published to The Mainichi on June 10th, it was reported that Aoba will undergo a psychiatric evaluation which will determine if he is mentally competent enough to be charged with the crimes and able to take criminal responsibility for his actions. The evaluation will likely take place in the Osaka detention center where he is currently bedridden.
The Mainichi report reiterates that Aoba has confessed to his crimes and repeats the claim that he did so because he believes Kyoto Animation stole his idea for a novel.
In the time since the initial attack, the Kyoto Animation studio has been gutted and torn down. No one is certain what the city will erect in its place as the residents of the neighborhood have stated that they do not wish for any kind of memorial to be installed.
In an official statement regarding the arrest of Aoba, Kyoto Animation had this to say:
“In regards to the accused, we have no additional comment. All that matters is his actions and their results. Regardless of how he may try to excuse his actions, or what remorse he may speak of after the fact, our friends whose lives were taken will not come back, nor will it help the wounds of our injured friends heal. Bereaved families and friends now have to face a permanently changed reality, as must we [at Kyoto Animation].
As a company, we obviously agree with prosecutors pursuing the maximum culpability that the law will allow.”