A man arrested on suspicion of ramming his car into a group of people and stabbing several of them on Route 65 on Sunday evening claims the incident was a road accident.
During suspect Ala Zwid’s remand hearing at the Haifa Magistrate’s Court on Monday, his court-appointed attorney, Wissam Araf, said Zwid “denies the accusation and says that it was a traffic accident.”
Prosecutor Shadi Siagah referred to Zwid, a 20-year-old resident of Umm el-Fahm, as “apparently an everyday citizen who decided in the middle of the day to take his car and harm innocents by trying to run them over, and then he got out of the car and attempted to stab them.”
He argued that the state still has at least six eyewitnesses to question about the case and asked the judge to order Zwid kept in custody.
Zwid’s remand was extended by nine days.
Zwid is accused of driving his car into a group of people on the side of Route 65 and then getting out and stabbing people before fleeing.
A 19-year-old female soldier was badly wounded when she was hit by the car and was taken to Hillel Yaffe Medical Center in Hadera while unconscious and hooked up to a respirator.
The other victims include a 14-year-old boy lightly to moderately wounded after he was hit by Zwid’s car, as well as a 45-yearold man and a 19-year-old man who were lightly and moderately wounded, respectively.
The incident took place in the evening hours on a stretch of Route 65 north of Hadera and near Kibbutz Gan Shmuel and a busy shopping center.
According to the Shin Bet (Israel Security Agency), Zwid is originally from the Palestinian village of Masilat a-Hartaiyya near Jenin, and came to Israel with his father under the Family Unification Law.