Knesset committee met to discuss Sandak case

Avraham Sandak (L) and Honenu Atty. Ariel Atari (R); Photo credit: Honenu

Honenu is representing those who are insisting on the investigation of the death of Ahuvia Sandak, z”l, who was tragically killed in a police car chase on December 21, 2020, and defending the many who are being detained while demonstrating for change in police behavior. The car Ahuvia was in with four other boys overturned when the police car collided with it from behind. Please click here for a list of posts connected to the case.

Tuesday, December 21, 2021, 12:56 On Tuesday, December 21, the joint committee of the Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee and the Public Security Committee, headed by MK Meirav Ben Ari and MK Ram Ben Barak, met to discuss the circumstances of the death of Ahuvia Sandak, z”l. The joint committee was founded following a suggestion by MK Itamar Ben Gvir to found a committee to investigate Sandak’s death.

Knesset members from many parties participated in the committee meeting, among them Orit Struk, Avi Ma’oz, Shlomo Karhi, Nir Orbach, Ariel Busso, Moshe Abutbul, Meir Porush, Simha Rotman, and Michal Woldiger. Avraham Sandak, Ahuvia’s father, was present at the meeting as were Honenu Attorneys Ariel Atari and Menashe Yado, who are representing the family.

A representative of the police came to the meeting and surprised those present when he said, “I am not involved at all with the details of the investigation.” Knesset members present were enraged that the police are continuing to belittle the matter and that they sent a representative who is unfamiliar with the investigation and prepared to speak only about the protests held by Ahuvia’s supporters.

Avraham Sandak spoke at the meeting about the character of his son and called for justice: “Ahuvia was a curious, happy, and friendly boy, who started a group to distribute hot soup to soldiers and policemen [on duty] in Gush Etzion. He loved the Torah and the Land of Israel, where he tended sheep. The youth wanted to marry his heart’s desire, Shalhevet, who now remains alone. Our own flesh and blood has been torn from us – Ahuvia, who loved the Land and People of Israel. He spread light with his unassuming ways.”

Sandak also spoke about the whitewashing of the investigation: “Whitewash covers the blood, but the blood still boils. Whitewashing conceals integrity and justice. The task of a policeman in Israel is to be upstanding, otherwise we are left with a police force full of hot air, lacking in influence, and with worthless authority. We demand not only justice for Ahuvia, but rather justice for all of Israel, so that a horrific incident such as this is not repeated. A stake was impaled in our hearts when a policeman collided with our son and abandoned him under a car for 40 minutes.

“A stake was impaled in our hearts a second time when what happened there was whitewashed, when the head of the Police Investigation Unit ordered the policemen released without interrogation. Knesset of Israel, you are elected public officials. You must draw from integrity and justice and cleanse the stain of our son’s death. Insist that justice come to light,” concluded Sandak.

MK Avi Ma’oz leveled criticism at the representatives of the PIU and of the police for their failure to respond to questions by Knesset members and their passing the buck from one authority to the other. “From the beginning of this [case], they have been pulling the wool over our eyes, and they continue to do so now. We, the members of the Knesset, must receive answers about this [case].”

Honenu Attorney Ariel Atari spoke at the meeting: “As of now, no answer has been given regarding why no examination was conducted to see if something was under the car. A policeman is obligated to make such an examination. If they had done the examination, we may not have been here today. Likewise, in the initial report the policemen did not say that they had collided with the [youths’] car. They changed their testimony only after an examination by a traffic inspector had been made and eyewitnesses had given testimony.”

Atari enumerated additional problems with the handling of the case by the PIU: “When they [the policemen involved with the car chase] arrived at the PIU, testimonies were not taken from them. They were released to their homes, and that is unprecedented. The testimonies which the policemen gave the following day were already coordinated and different [than initial reports from the scene]. There is a problem here. Ahuvia’s case is an extreme case of what is happening today at the PIU. They do not like criticism. For over half a year we have been waiting for a decision from the State Prosecutor. The investigation has been over for a long time and decisions should have already been made. The PIU and the office of the State Prosecutor should be supplying answers.”

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