Herzliya man held for killing second wife

65-year-old arrested on suspicion of stabbing to death second wife 21 years after killing his first wife in 1991.

September 18, 2012 20:12
1 minute read.
[illustrative photo]

Police car in Tel Aviv at night 311. (photo credit: Yoni Cohen)

Some two decades after he murdered his first wife, a 65- year-old man was arrested Tuesday morning on suspicion of stabbing his second wife to death in their Herzliya home.

Tel Aviv Police spokeswoman Orit Friedman said emergency dispatchers received a call just before 6 a.m. from a man saying he had just killed his wife. Police and paramedics who came to the scene found the woman in the couple’s bedroom, dead of stab wounds.

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They also found the couple’s four-year-old daughter sitting outside the bedroom door. They believe she was at home at the time of the murder.

Social workers will determine if the girl should go into foster care or the custody of relatives, Friedman said. She added that the dead woman, 38-year-old Elsi Lagundai, had a sister in Petah Tikvah while the suspect had children from his first marriage.

In 1991 the suspect killed his first wife in a similar fashion.

He was sentenced to 14 years in prison but was deemed unfit for incarceration.

Instead, he was sent to Abarbanel Psychiatric Hospital, where he was served out his sentence.

The man met Lagundai shortly after his release. They were married six years ago and recently separated. A few weeks ago the suspect called police and asked that he be escorted to the couple’s home to gather his belongings, after which he left peacefully.

Court-appointed attorney Nir Elfasy said Tuesday night that his client admitted to having killed his wife.

He explained that he suspected his wife of being unfaithful and using him in order to be able to stay in Israel legally.

Elfasy said of his client that “it is obvious that he is not a well man” and had become “an emotional powder keg” ahead of the incident. The lawyer added that he would focus on his client’s mental state and not deny that he carried out the murder.

On Tuesday night, police were expected to bring the suspect to the Tel Aviv Magistrate’s Court for a remand hearing. For the time being there is a gag order on publication of the man’s name.

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