Honenu filed complaint, police officer to face disciplinary trial

Thursday, July 21, 2016 13:40 The Attorney General’s office is funding the legal defense of a police officer who slapped a 15-year-old demonstrator and denied the act. However the Police Investigation Unit announced that the officer will be tried for unlawful use of force in a disciplinary trial, following a complaint filed with the Police Investigation Unit by Honenu in name of the minor.
The incident occurred on December 22, 2015 at the Tishbi Intersection in the north of Israel during a protest held in response to reports of the ISA torturing Jewish minors who were detained and interrogated in the Kfar Duma case. At the protest 18 demonstrators, some of whom complained of police brutality, were detained and brought to the Natzrat Magistrate Court.
According to the statement of claim, during the protest, the 15-year-old demonstrator was detained and pinned to the engine hood of a police car by three policemen, even though he did not resist detention. At this stage a police officer came and slapped the complainant in his face twice, while he was completely restrained by three policemen. The complainant was then taken into the police car by the policemen as the police officer shoved his back. See video here. Video credit: Yitzhak Markowitz.
On the day following the protest the complainant was released at the Natzrat Magistrate Court and he subsequently filed a complaint with the Police Investigation Unit for police brutality. During the week of Sunday, January 17, Honenu Attorney Menasheh Yado filed a 32,000 NIS civil suit with the Afula Magistrate Court on behalf of the complainant.
However the State is talking out of both sides of its mouth. In the statement of defense submitted by the Attorney General’s office in a civil proceeding, they deny that the officer slapped the youth, whereas in the announcement by the Police Investigation Unit which Honenu received on Tuesday, July 19, the Police Internal Investigations Department announced that the officer used violence on the youth and they intend to bring him to a disciplinary trial.
Honenu Attorney Menasheh Yado, who is handling the case, informed the Police Investigation Unit that he demands to receive the investigative material in order to examine the possibility of filing an appeal and a demand to have the officer stand trial for a criminal violation.
Yado: “We intend to examine why the officer will not be accused of a criminal violation. At a time when police brutality is rising, intensified enforcement of police brutality laws should be considered. We regret that while the Police Investigation Unit indicates that the officer will stand trial, the Attorney General’s office submitted a statement of defense in which they deny the officer’s guilt and agree to give him legal support, funded by the tax-paying citizens of Israel. We suggest that the Attorney General’s office do some soul searching and establish appropriate standards concerning willingness to defend criminal behavior by policemen.”

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