The arsonist-set fire that swept through the Kyoto Animation studio on July 18 has claimed its 35th life, according to Japanese media reports.
Police have stated that the victim is a man in his twenties. The identities of all 35 dead have yet to be revealed. Another 33 employers of the studio were injured in the blaze, with 10 still hospitalized.
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In a related development, police searching the apartment of the 41-year-old suspect Shinji Aoba in the Tokyo suburb of Saitama seized a DVD by Kyoto Animation, together with other items. This is the first concrete evidence of a connection between the suspect and the studio, familiarly known as KyoAni.
Police are also investigating the source of anonymous threatening messages that KyoAni received from the same Internet address between September and November last year. The sender reportedly used the Tor identity-disguising software.
Despite the tragedy, KyoAni is going ahead with plans to release “Violet Evergarden: Eternity and the Auto Memories Doll,” a “side story” film from the studio’s “Violet Evergarden” franchise. The film will screen in limited release from Sept. 6 to 26, one week longer than originally planned. The status of the main “Violet Evergarden” film, which is currently set for a Jan. 10 release in Japan, is less certain.