The scene of the fatal stabbing attack at the Gush Etzion Junction on September 16, 2018..
(photo credit: AMICHAI GABBAI/TPS)
The Judea Military Court on Wednesday sentenced a Palestinian terrorist to 30 years in prison for manslaughter in the death of Maj. Eliav Gelman.
The IDF might still appeal the original acquittal of Mamdoach Yusef Muhammad Amaro on the charge of murder of the IDF soldier, in which the court convicted him instead of manslaughter.
On February 24, 2016, Amaro, armed with a knife, started moving toward the Gush Etzion junction with the intention of stabbing one of the Jewish bystanders there, the court said.
According to the decision, Amaro was warned by Gelman and other IDF troops to halt, but continued to come at them.
Gelman and the other soldiers fired on Amaro, wounding him and preventing him from stabbing anyone.
However, some of the soldiers who fired on Amaro were standing opposite Gelman, and in the crossfire shot him by accident.
In light of the complex circumstances – Amaro did not kill Gelman nor did he get far enough to see if he merely wanted to wound or actually kill – the court split 2-1 and acquitted Amaro of murder.
The dissenting judge voted to convict Amaro of murder, in light of his actions that led to the death of Gelman, and the likelihood he would have committed murder had he himself not been shot.
There is also a “felony-murder rule” in many legal systems that says if a person commits a felony and someone dies in the process of that felony, the person can be convicted of murder, even if they did not intend to kill.
The rule is an exception of the general rule that states a murder conviction requires specific intent not only to harm, but to actually kill.
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