Jerusalem gay pride parade stabbing suspect rejects court’s authority

"This court is part of the mechanism of evil," says Yishai Schlissel before judge enforces 12-day remand.

August 1, 2015 21:31
2 minute read.
Yishai Schlissel

Yishai Schlissel arrested after stabbing six people at the Jerusalem gay pride parade. (photo credit: REUTERS)

A Jerusalem Magistrate’s Court judge extended the remand of Yishai Schlissel for 12 days at a Friday hearing for allegedly stabbing six people at the capital’s annual gay pride parade the previous day, although the ultra-Orthodox suspect said the court had no jurisdiction because it does not “follow the rules of the holy Torah.”

Schlissel, 50, from Modi’in Illit – who was released from prison three weeks ago after serving a 10-year sentence for committing a similar crime at the 2005 Jerusalem Gay Pride Parade – defiantly told Judge Chana Miriam Lomp during the hearing: “I do not accept this court’s authority. This court is part of the mechanism of evil. I have no interest in cooperating at all. I do not recognize any of the regime’s institutions.”

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Noting Schlissel’s previous conviction, the severity of the crime he is accused of, and that he poses an imminent threat to society, Lomp honored the police request to keep him behind bars for a minimum of 12 days.

Schlissel was tackled to the ground and arrested on Keren Hayesod Street, in downtown Jerusalem, less than 30 minutes into the march after wildly stabbing the six participants.

According to a Shaare Zedek Medical Center spokeswoman, a 15-year-old female victim who was treated there has been transferred to Hadassah University Medical Center in Jerusalem’s Ein Kerem and is in critical condition, while a 26-year-old man has been upgraded to stable condition.

The four remaining victims of the attack are recovering from light-to-moderate wounds.

In 2005, Schlissel was convicted of attempted murder and aggravated assault for stabbing three people marching in that year’s parade. Although he was initially sentenced to 12 years imprisonment, a successful 2007 appeal lowered the sentence by two years.

While police spokeswoman Luba Samri said on Saturday she could not comment on the case, the Judea and Samaria District Police issued a statement saying that although Schlissel lives in its jurisdiction, officers were not obligated to follow him into Jerusalem.

The Jerusalem Post’s sister paper, Ma’ariv, reported that following Schlissel’s release from prison, he returned to his ultra-Orthodox West Bank community and penned a hand-written pamphlet railing against the impending parade.

“It is the obligation of every Jew to keep his soul from punishment and stop this giant desecration of God’s name next Thursday,” the pamphlet stated.

“Once again, the evildoers want to have a parade of sin, and of all places, in Jerusalem – city of the king of kings, blessed be He – in order to defile its holiness and desecrate its holy name on Thursday,” the missive continued.

“They are always looking for ways to desecrate God’s name even more.”

Schlissel, who wrote that the parade was a result of “our enormous sins,” added that such events constitute “tests from God” of peoples’ faith, “and whether it matters to us if His name is desecrated so greatly, or whether each person is only worried about himself.”

Moreover, Schlissel contended that it is incumbent on all religions to collectively reject displays of gay solidarity and pride.

“It is [an obligation] on all the religions to come together and stop this event,” he wrote.

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