Police regained the body of a young woman in an ultra-Orthodox neighborhood in Jerusalem on Wednesday night after dozens of haredim had snatched it from police and escaped with it into the rainy night in an apparent attempt to prevent an autopsy.
Magen David Adom and ZAKA crews were alerted to an abandoned building on Rehov Rabeinu Gershom on Wednesday evening, where the lifeless body of a 28-year-old woman was found. After attempts to resuscitate her, the medical teams were forced to pronounce her dead.
As police readied to transfer the corpse for an autopsy to determine the cause of death, which was initially believed to be of a non-criminal nature, dozens of haredim streamed to the scene, attacked the law enforcement officials and managed to grab the body and escape with it, while damaging a police car.
Two hundred additional police officers were dispatched to the scene, and began scouring the Geula and Mea Shearim neighborhoods for the body, while at the same time engaging in talks with haredi leaders.
Eventually, it was the deceased woman’s family who gave the body to police late Wednesday night. Police began conducting tests to rule out the option of foul play in the woman’s death, and launched an investigation into locating the haredim involved in the body snatching.