The State Attorney’s Office filed an appeal to the Supreme Court on Thursday after the Beersheba District Court found a police sergeant’s killer guilty of manslaughter, not murder.
Ibrahim Tantawi ran over and killed 32-year-old Sgt. Yigal Cohen near Mitzpe Ramon in 2008, in what police say was a deliberate act of murder.However, the Beersheba District Court found Tantawi guilty of the lesser charge of manslaughter, and sentenced him to 14 years in prison.
“Tantawi deliberately turned his vehicle towards [Cohen], and did not slow down or turn back to his original direction, even though [Cohen] was fleeing to the opposite lane,” the petition said. “These facts indicate the severity of the risk in which [Tantawi] deliberately placed [Cohen].”
According to the indictment, Tantawi and another man would regularly go to Mitzpe Ramon to steal electrical power cables. On the evening of March 13, 2008, Cohen was on duty on Route 40 near Mitzpe Ramon when he flagged down a car he found suspicious.
Tantawi, the driver, veered towards Cohen at high speed.
Although Cohen tried to escape, Tantawi drove the car across the road, hit and killed the police sergeant instantly.
He then fled the scene, but was later arrested.