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Man asks for quiet from youths, is fatally stabbed
By YAAKOV LAPPIN
05/05/2012
Four people murdered in unrelated incidents over violent weekend; man seriously injured in Rishon shooting.
 
Police arrested eight suspects over the weekend in the murder of a father of two in Beerseheba who was stabbed because he asked a group of youths to keep the noise down.

Seven males and one female who is under the age 18 were arrested. Some are suspected of being directly tied to the killing while others are suspected of aiding the murderers.

The arrests followed an intensive investigation by the the Negev police subdistrict’s central unit.

Police Insp.-Gen. Yohanan Danino said, “We are at war, a war over the face of, and some would say the future of, Israeli society. It can be compared to every other war fought by Israel, and it is no less important.

We all need to join forces to combat the plague of violence in our midst.”

Danino added that “there are no magical solutions. There are monetary solutions. We need more officers on the streets and in the parks. More officers in the Arab community. More officers in entertainment districts and where youths are.”

Danino said he would submit a proposal to Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu on Monday to increase the size of the Israel Police, adding that the organization hasn’t grown since 1994.

After Gadi Vichman was killed in Beersheba early Saturday, officers searched house-to-house and tried to identify the attackers.

There has been growing outrage over the police’s failure to prevent the killing, after it emerged that members of the public, including the murdered man’s wife, Michal, had called to complain about youths smashing bottles two hours before the attack.

A patrol car dispatched to the street in response to the calls “didn’t find a thing,” police said, and left to attend to another incident. Two hours later, Vichman left his apartment to speak to the youths, before being headbutted and stabbed to death.

Public Security Minister Yitzhak Aharonovitch announced on Sunday that the police would “investigate [its] conduct in this incident, and learn all of the lessons, as the investigation continues.” He vowed that the “murderers will be arrested.”

But the scope of the investigation remained unclear. While Aharonovitch said it would be overseen by Danino, senior police sources told The Jerusalem Post they were unaware of a major internal inquiry, saying a probe would be conducted at the local level.

Hundreds of mourners attended Vichman’s funeral on Sunday evening. “I keep thinking maybe he’s clinically dead and he’ll recover. But he won’t,” his wife, Michal Vichman, told Israel Radio before the funeral.

Earlier, Aharonovitch called her and expressed his “deep sorrow and condolences over the terrible loss,” adding, “I’m shocked and horrified by the painful murders that occurred in recent days.”

He condemned “the intolerable ease with which these criminals take lives,” and said that “this cannot continue.”

A pilot program already in place in 13 cities, which involves training municipal inspectors and granting them police powers, will be expanded to every city, and CCTV cameras will continue to go up in urban centers and crime hot spots, the minister said.
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