Suspects apprehended, but not located?
Updated: Jan 25
Please click here for a list of posts relating to cases in which Honenu provided legal counsel to victims of antisemitic attacks in Jerusalem.
Monday, October 25, 2021, 9:07 In early September, as two Jewish brothers were returning from selichot prayers at the Western Wall, Arabs provoked them, cursed them, and after a few minutes, brutally assaulted them near the City of David. One of the brothers suffered a head injury from a blunt object and a broken thumb. He was evacuated to the hospital for emergency room treatment.
Police who arrived on the scene detained four of the assailants, however recently, to the shock of the brothers, they were informed that the case had been closed because “suspects of the crime have not yet been located”. The brothers, who had witnessed the detention, immediately demanded that the police reopen the case.
Honenu Attorney Chayim Bleicher, who is representing the brothers, sent an urgent letter to the police. In the letter he expressed shock at the grounds for closing the case: “On the aforementioned Saturday night, Arabs brutally assaulted my clients and their friends only because they were Jews. The assailants were detained by the police who arrived on the scene as the incident ended. Four days later, I sent a letter of representation requesting that the suspects be prosecuted to the full extent of the law and that I be updated regarding the status of the case. Almost a month has passed since the serious incident and I have not yet received any reply.
“Recently, my clients discovered by means of the crime victim notification system that their case had been closed ‘because suspects of the act had not been apprehended’. My clients were extremely shocked, because it was impossible for no suspects to have been found: The assailants had been apprehended at the scene. Additionally, the site of the assault is filmed [by security cameras] from all angles. There is no reason for the assailants not to be penalized.”
In conclusion, on behalf of the victims, Bleicher demanded that the investigation be continued: “In a civilized country that purports to be under the rule of law, it is inconceivable that [assailants charged with] aggravated assault motivated by terror, as in this case, would continue their lives without any repercussions or penalization for their acts. I demand that the case be reopened immediately, and the assailants arrested and brought to trial.”
Honenu Attorney Chayim Bleicher: “This is an extremely outrageous incident. Yet again Jews have been assaulted in Jerusalem only because of their Jewishness. And in this incident, suspects were detained at the scene, but nevertheless the case was closed. The victims expected the assailants to be put on trial for antisemitic assault. Unfortunately that did not happen. However we will see to it that it does.”