Honenu appeals to reopen road violence case

Please click here for a list of posts relating to cases in which Honenu provided legal counsel to victims of antisemitic attacks in Jerusalem.

Thursday, January 19, 2023, 8:12 In February 2022, a yeshiva student was attacked by an Arab who rear-ended his car on a Jerusalem street. The student filed a complaint with the police, but the case was closed due to it not being “suitable for criminal proceedings.” Honenu Attorney Chayim Bleicher, who appealed the case on behalf of the student, stated, “Loyal Israeli citizens face violence on the roads and in the streets on a daily basis. In many incidents, it seems that Islamist Arabs are taking advantage of any opportunity to inflict violence on Jews and thereby do their part to increase terror and exacerbate the lack of security Israeli citizens feel. We demand that the police and other law enforcement authorities perform their duties without weakness and bring attackers to justice. Closing an assault case under these circumstances is a failure that must be immediately rectified.”

In his letter to the Department of Appeals in the Office of the State Attorney, Bleicher described the attack: “On 15.2.22, the appellant, a yeshiva student, was brutally attacked as he was driving through Jerusalem. The appellant began to pass a truck in the left lane of two lanes going in the same direction. As he was passing, the appellant noticed a driver honking his horn, flashing his lights, and driving very close behind him. The appellant slowed down in an attempt to understand what was happening. Then the abovementioned driver rear-ended him. Immediately after the collision, the Arab driver [who had rear-ended the appellant] got out of his car, opened the appellant’s car door, and brutally beat him as he remained seated. [The attacker] punched and slapped the appellant in the face, which shattered his glasses. The appellant noticed two more Arabs getting out of [the attacker’s] car and approaching him. However, fortunately, two drivers passing the site noticed the incident, and one of them also started to film. That is apparently what prevented them [the Arabs] from continuing to attack the appellant.

“Policemen who arrived on the scene took the details of everyone involved, questioned at least one of the eyewitnesses, and detained the attacker at the scene. The policemen instructed the appellant to file a complaint at the police station. The appellant went to the station and along with giving his testimony, he was interrogated under warning, his fingerprints were taken, and he was photographed for a mug shot.”

Bleicher wrote in the letter that he had written to the police several times asking that they detain the assailants and that he had not received a reply. After a time, he discovered that the case had been closed: “On 6.3.22, the undersigned wrote to the Oz Police Station on behalf of the appellant and requested that the assailants be located and put on trial. A copy of the letter was sent to the district commander. The appellant was informed that the case against the assailants was closed because ‘the incident is not suitable for criminal proceedings’.”

Bleicher described the disappointment of the victim: “As if the brutal attack and the rough treatment he received from the police when he gave testimony were not enough, now he feels that closing the case sends a message of forgiveness and leniency about the incident. This was a serious incident that is without a doubt criminal. The results of road violence are serious and must be treated forcefully, especially when the attack is tinged with racism. A case like this must not be closed without the perpetrators being penalized. I am appealing the closing of the case. I demand that the case be reopened, the attacker be put on trial on the basis of the testimonies and the evidence in the case, and that he be indicted for causing damage by endangering road traffic and aggravated assault,” concluded Bleicher.

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