Activists and attorneys for the Honenu legal rights organization were up in arms over the indictment of an Arab terrorist who was indicted Sunday – but not on charges of attempted murder. The terrorist was arrested after he stabbed in the back a Jewish youth near the Damascus Gate in Jerusalem on the night of May 23 this year – Shavuot. The youth and a companion were on their way to a yeshiva to study Torah.
The terrorist attacked the two by surprise, and had been carrying a knife – clearly making the attack premeditated. The 30-centimeter long knife was of a type that had been used in other stabbing murder attacks.
Despite this, the State Attorney's Office, aka the Prosecution, decided not to indict the stabber for attempted murder, but rather for aggravated assault. This, despite the fact that the victim was stabbed in the back, and only remained alive because the stabber managed to miss vital organs.
With the lesser charge, the terrorist, if convicted, with serve a lesser sentence – perhaps a year or so in prison, as opposed to a lengthier or even life sentence if he was indicted for attempted murder.
In a letter to prosecutors, attorney Moshe Yado of the Honenu organization, who is representing the stabbing victim, said that “we believe that the circumstances outlined in the indictment clearly call for a charge of attempted murder. In the case of my client, a minor who was stabbed in the back by a large knife, the wound was just a centimeter away from his spine and lungs. It is clear that the accused intended to commit murder.
“This was not a regular crime, but a nationalistic terror attack that is designed to strike fear into the hearts of all Israelis,” the letter continued.
Sunday's stabbing attack against a police officer in the same general area just added insult to injury, Yado said Sunday. “The attack Sunday hurts even more in light of the refusal of the prosecutor's office to indict a murderer for his crime, stabbing two youths in the same neighborhood.”