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Case reopened after Honenu appeal

Scene of attack, from the appeal

Scene of attack, from the appeal

Monday, June 22, 2020, 15:01 During the summer of 2019, as two hassidic youths, N. and S., walked towards the Western Wall after immersing in Ma’ayan HaShiloah (The Pool of Siloam) in the City of David, a group of Arabs standing near the City of David Visitors’ Center attacked and beat them. Despite video clips from security cameras at the site which documented the attack, and security guards who witnessed it, the case was closed. The case was reopened after Honenu Attorney Bleicher filed an appeal requesting the reopening of the investigation. See here for a report of Honenu’s successful representation of two brothers injured in a similar attack in 2018. N. was the first to be attacked. When S., in whose name the appeal was filed, asked the assailants why they were attacking his friend, one of them ran towards him, shoved him and pushed him away roughly. After several moments, N. succeeding in escaping from the attackers and ran for help to the security guards at a nearby guard post. S. also succeeding in escaping the attackers, as they cursed him and made vulgar gestures in his direction. When S. started to answer them, the group of attackers rushed him and one of them jumped into the air and kicked him hard in the stomach. Then another attacker punched S. in the face and broke his glasses. The appeal states that the security guards at the site saw what happened and distanced the assailants a bit after the attack, but did not provide adequate assistance to the complainants, who were forced to flee towards the Western Wall and summon the police. Police who came to the scene interrogated the security guards, who said in their testimony, after no suspects were found fleeing from the scene, that “the family lives opposite the City of David.” In his letter Bleicher criticized the decision to close the case: “The incident was documented by two security cameras as were the faces of the attackers. Additionally, security guards were present at the site, who if [further] testimony was taken from them could identify the assailants. However, for reasons very difficult to understand, the police chose to close a serious assault case due to ‘perpetrator unknown’.” Consequently, Bleicher requested that the investigative case be reopened: “For the sake of law and justice and for the good of the security of the citizens of Israel, I request that the investigative case be reopened and the assailants be located and brought to trial for racially motivated aggravated assault.” Honenu Attorney Chayim Bleicher: “This was a clearly antisemitic attack, which was documented [by security cameras]. The antisemitic assailants are wandering freely due to failures in the investigation, despite the documentation and the witnesses. Only recently we witnessed in Hevron a dragnet involving dozens of policemen and detectives and unrestrained detentions of minors who were suspected of involvement with a documented altercation. Where are the law enforcement agents when Jews are seriously assaulted in antisemitic attacks?”

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