Leiby Kletzky’s accused killer pleads not guilty

Psychological exam finds Levi Aron, accused of killing 8-year-old hassidic boy in Brooklyn, competent to stand trial after.

By GIL STERN STERN SHEFLER
August 4, 2011 21:50
1 minute read.
Leibby Kletzky

Leibby Kletzky 311. (photo credit: NYPD)

 
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NEW YORK – The suspected killer of eight-year-old hassidic boy Leiby Kletzky is fit to stand trial, according to the results of a psychological exam presented on Thursday.

A team of experts told a court in New York City that 35-year-old Levi Aron was mentally sound to face charges of kidnapping and first degree murder.

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Aron’s lawyer, Pierre Bazile, said the evaluation merely permitted court procedures to continue and that the defense team may still claim insanity.

“He understands the nature of the charges and the proceedings and can assist in his defense,” Bazile said after the hearing. “It is not a rendering on sanity or insanity.”

Kletzky went missing on July 11 while walking home from a day camp held at his school, Yeshiva Boyan Tiferes Mordechai Shlomo, in Brooklyn’s Borough Park neighborhood. Police and up to 5,000 volunteers launched a massive search for the boy, coordinated by the Brooklyn South Shomrim volunteer civilian patrol organization, joined in a block-by-block search for him, including Jews from the local community and from as far away as Queens, the Catskills, Monsey and Boston Kletzky had begged his parents to let him walk home from the camp. His mother had waited for him at a predetermined point a few blocks away at 50th Street and 13th Avenue. The boy missed a turn upon leaving camp and headed in the wrong direction.

Parts of his dismembered body were found in the refrigerator of the suspect’s home on July 13.

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According to the indictment, Aron abducted the boy who he happened to meet outside a dentist’s office. He is believed to have killed and dismembered the boy in order to hide the evidence.

The suspect has pleaded not guilty to the charges.

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