Police detained several local teens last week on suspicion they brutally attacked an American Jewish tourist in Ashkelon, hitting her in the head with a paving stone and leaving a gash more than five centimeters long.
The victim, a 28-year-old mother of three, told Channel 2 her family had considered immigrating to Israel, a plan they have now canceled.
Amber and Segiv Medmoni were toward the end of their three-week visit to Israel and were staying at Segiv's parents' home in Ashkelon. Late into the night, a group of youngsters riding go-karts up and down the residential street were keeping the couple awake.
Segiv, 33, an Israeli citizen, reportedly went with his father to the house next door, where one or more of the youngsters live, and asked if they could quiet down.
Segiv said the youngsters threatened to kill them and burn down their house if they did not leave immediately. About 40 minutes later, around 20 youths gathered outside his parents' home and began screaming insults at the family.
The family called the police and shortly thereafter, a paving stone reportedly struck Amber in the head. Paramedics took her to the hospital, where she was given stitches to close the gash.
Police arrested a number of suspects and have asked the Medmonis to delay their return to the United States to testify against the alleged assailants.
An Ashkelon police source told The Jerusalem Post on Sunday that police held the suspects for 24 hours on Wednesday, but released them due to lack of evidence.
The police source added that it was a problematic case because there was no way to prove from where the stone came. She said that the couple did not see it thrown and there was almost no way to connect the paving stone to the youths.
The only thing investigators were able to confirm so far was that the couple had an argument with the youths, who in turn threatened them, the source said.
This was not the first time that the Medmoni family had had issues with the neighbors, she added.
Segiv told Channel 2 this week that he's "never felt like this. I am a strong man, I served in an IDF combat unit and was a combat medic in Lebanon. But to come here and see the people you love hurt is very difficult."