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Was it apathy or powerlessness of the police?

Sunday, February 14, 2016, 9:37 Honenu Attorney Menasheh Yado filed a complaint with the Public Complaints Unit after police showed gross negligence in their handling of the many aspects of the complaint of a Temple Mount Activist in response to threats against him. On July 26, 2015, the tenth of Av by the Hebrew calendar, M., a Temple Mount activist was detained on the Temple Mount after reciting the “Shema” prayer and was removed from the Temple Mount plaza by two policemen who took him to the police station adjacent to the exit from the Temple Mount. As the activist was being taken along Shalshelet Street an Arab turned to him and said, “If you do again what you did, I will kill you.” The policemen heard the threat and yet did nothing. The activist turned to Honenu’s Department of Crime Victims for legal counsel. Two days later Honenu Attorney Menasheh Yado sent a letter of complaint about the threat to the Merchav David (Old City) District Police in Jerusalem in which he demanded that the incident be investigated and the threatening Arab detained. Yado brought the fact that the street is photographed by “Mabat 2000” security cameras to the attention of the police and pointed out that this footage could be used to identify the threatening Arab. After a time the police requested that the activist himself appear at the police station and file a complaint, which he did. Since then Yado has sent numerous letters reminding the police of the incident. The officer in charge of investigations at the Merchav David Police has responded that the case is being investigated. However the activist was not summoned to the Merchav David Police Station in order to identify in the video clip the Arab who had threatened him, until a few weeks ago, approximately half a year after the incident occurred. As if that was not enough, when he arrived at the police station he was shown video clips from only his visit on the Temple Mount and not from Shalshelet Street, where the incident had occurred. The activist told the investigator that the video clips were irrelevant and requested that he show him photographic evidence from the security cameras on the street on which he was threatened. The investigator then examined the “Mabat 2000″ cameras in order to locate a video clip likely to be relevant to the investigation. After examination he informed the complainant that the footage from the time of the incident had already been erased due to the amount of time that had elapsed since then. “The police conduct is frustrating and disappointing,” wrote Yado in the complaint. “The police failed twice. The first failure occurred when the policemen who escorted M. heard the threat but did not detain the threatening Arab. The second failure was investigatory. After half a year they summoned the complainant to examine irrelevant material, when the incriminating photographs were no longer in existence. All that despite the frequent and numerous letters which I had sent to the police.” Yado notes that the problem is especially serious in light of the fact that the police did not recognize the threat as genuine, even after the assassination attempt on Rabbi Yehuda Glick, in which he was very seriously injured, which proves the gravity of the matter. “Rabbi Yehuda Glick survived an assassination attempt. The apathy – or perhaps the powerlessness – of the police in the face of a serious threat appears to give license to nationalist crime against Jews in this dangerous area,” wrote Honenu Attorney Menasheh Yado, and added that he hopes that his complaint will be effectively handled now.

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