Gavel from Reuters 370.
(photo credit: REUTERS/Chip East)
The Central District Attorney’s Office on Monday struck a surprising plea-deal
dropping the murder charges against Arka’an Badir, for running over Sha’arei
Tikva security guard Lior Parhi, in favor of a manslaughter charge.
was convicted of manslaughter and other more minor crimes on Monday, by the Lod
District Court, subsequently to the deal.
Badir lives in Kafr Kasim and
ran over Parhi then fled the scene, and committed other crimes in September
The case was never a conventional murder case as even the
indictment never alleged premeditated murder.
However initially the
prosecution believed it could obtain a murder conviction based on the
“felony-murder rule,” which directs a murder conviction for any killing that
comes about indirectly through the commission of another felony, even if the
murder was not premeditated.
The basis of the argument for “felony
murder” in the Parhi case was as follows: Badir was waiting near the West Bank
security barrier to shuttle Palestinians who had illegally breached and crossed
through the fence to Kafr Kasim. Each passenger was due to pay Badir NIS 50 for
ferrying from the border fence; this was the crime that Badir was involved in
that eventually, indirectly, led to him killing Parhi.
Parhi and other
security personnel were checking Palestinians’ documentation at the nearby
checkpoint at the entrance from the West Bank to Israel.
Parhi and some
of the personnel noticed Badir’s car waiting suspiciously next to a portion of
the fence, which they correctly deduced had been breached.
approached Badir who had already loaded a number of Palestinians, who were
crossing through the breach in the fence illegally, into his car.
Badir saw the security forces approach, he attempted to escape in his vehicle
but Parhi blocked his path of escape and pointed his gun at Badir’s vehicle, to
force him to stop.
In response, Badir eventually hit Parhi and sent him
flying a significant distance, killing him in the process.
indictment said that Badir had also started to pick up speed with the aim to
evade capture, eventually accelerating and continuing in Parhi’s direction,
hitting him at a speech of 73 kms per hour, and sending him flying 64.5
But during the course of the prosecution’s case, the defense
successfully raised doubts about the alleged speed, and the distance Parhi’s
body went flying.
The felony-murder rule classically applies to cases of
crimes such as armed robbery, which is in and of itself inherently violent. In
contrast, the court said that Badir’s crime of illegally ferrying Palestinian
infiltrators, who had crossed the border (usually for work), was not even a
felony, only a misdemeanor.
The three judge panel expressed an initial
opinion that under prior case law, a killing combined with such a minor
non-violent misdemeanor could not serve as the basis for a murder charge of any
While the prosecution attempted to convince the court otherwise,
ultimately, after having tried part of the case, between some of the above and
other changing facts in the case, and the court’s clear signaling that it would
rule that felony-murder would not apply, the prosecution cut a deal for
Subsequent to running over Parhi, Badir fled in his car in
a bid to escape until he crashed into a road sign.
Afterwards, Badir and
his three Palestinian passengers escaped on foot.
Badir and three alleged
Israeli-Arab accomplices were later apprehended by security forces while
involved in activities meant to obstruct the investigation.
also convicted of obstructing the investigation and avoiding arrest after the