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Youth ordered released due to lack of “reasonable suspicion”

Monday, October 19, 2015, 18:00 In mid-October 2015, the Israeli Police prided themselves on the apprehension of a suspect in possession of a backpack containing “the means to carry out a “price tag” [attack]”, and publicized the detention. The suspect, however, a Jewish youth detained in Givat HaBaladim, a hilltop community near Kochav HaShachar, was ordered released by the Jerusalem Magistrate Court on Monday, October 19. The youth denies all connection to the aforementioned backpack in which gloves, knitted hats (the type worn to obscure the wearer’s face), spray-paint and a manual gas pump were found. During the deliberation on October 19, Honenu attorney Avichai Hajbi pleaded that the detained youth has no connection to the backpack, which was not found in his possession but rather in an open area of the outpost in which many youth were present, some of whom do not permanently reside in the outpost. Jerusalem Magistrate Court Judge David Shaul Gabai Richter accepted most of Honenu attorney Avichai Hajbi’s pleas and ordered the youth released on condition of being banned from the region of Kochav HaShahar for 30 days. The police had requested a remand extension of four days. The court also ruled that there is no evidence linking the youth to the backpack and that at this stage there is no “reasonable suspicion” that he will commit a crime. Judge Gabai Richter ruled that the evidence presented by the police is not grounds to suspect the youth and also stated that even if there had been a connection between the youth and the backpack: “A connection in general circumstances such as these is insufficient to establish a cause for detention.” Nonetheless Judge Gabai Richter accepted the police demand for a delay in carrying out the decision in order to give them time to consider filing an appeal. On October 19 three other youths were also detained on suspicion of being connected to the backpack and a deliberation on their case is scheduled.

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