A feud over who would succeed the Tomioka Hachimangu shrine has led to three being murdered, after which the murderer killed himself for good measure.
The brother of the shrine’s 58-year-old chief priestess was identified as the murderer; the brother (56-years-old) cold-heartedly killed the chief priestess with a katana as she got out of her car at the shrine and his wife aided in his crime by injuring the priestess’s driver – the driver fled and managed to survive despite his wounds.
Afterwards, the brother reportedly killed his 30-year-old wife and followed up by taking his own life – the bloodied samurai sword and various other knives being found at the scene.
It is surmised that the bloody crime occurred due to a feud over the shrine’s succession, as the murderer was originally chief priest back in 1990 after succeeding his father but was later removed for unknown reasons, causing his sister to take the reigns after their father retired.
The soon-to-be murderer was then arrested (after he was ousted from his role of chief priest and his father re-assumed the position) for sending threatening letters to his sister and a note stating that he would “send her to hell” – this was apparently not enough to suppress the grudge however…