Police arrest 8 over murder of Beersheba father

7 males, 1 female suspected of involvement in murder of father who asked a gang of youths to keep the noise down; Aharonovitch says police chief will investigate handling of calls prior to murder, but police sources tell 'Post' they are unaware of any large scale internal inquiry.

May 6, 2012 19:16
2 minute read.
Public Security Minister Yitzhak Aharonovitch.

Aharonovitch_311 reuters. (photo credit: Ammar Awad / Reuters)


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Police arrested eight suspects for the murder of a father-of-two in Beerseheba over the weekend who was stabbed merely because he asked a gang of youths to keep the noise down.

The suspects include seven males and one female who is under the age 18. Some are suspected of being directly involved the killing while others are suspected of aiding the murder suspects.

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The arrests came following an intensive investigation by the elite central unit of the Negev police sub-district.

Since the homicide early on Saturday, police conducted house-to-house searches and attempted to gain intelligence on the identity of the attackers involved in the killing of Gadi Vichman, but no suspects have yet been arrested.

There has been growing outrage over the police's failure to prevent the murder, after it emerged that members of the public, including the murdered man's wife, Michal, called police to complain about youths smashing bottles two hours before the killing.

A patrol car dispatched to the street in response to the calls "didn't find a thing," police said, and left the area to attend to another incident. Two hours later, Vichman left his apartment to speak to the youths, before being headbutted and stabbed to death.

Public Security Minister Yitzhak Aharnovitch announced on Sunday that police will "investigate [its] conduct in this incident, and learn all of the lessons, as the investigation continues." He vowed that the "murderers will be arrested." But the scope of the investigation remained unclear. While Aharonovitch said that the investigation would be overseen by police commissioner Insp.-Gen. Yochanan Danino, senior police sources told The Jerusalem Post they were unaware of any major internal inquiry.


Hundreds of mourners took part in Vichman's funeral Sunday evening, including his widow, Michal.

"I keep thinking maybe he's clinically dead and he'll recover. But he won't," she told Israel Radio before the funeral.

Earlier, the public security minister called Michal Vichman and expressed his "deep sorrow and condolences over the terrible loss," adding, "I'm shocked and horrified by the painful murders that occurred in recent days."

Aharonovitch condemned "the intolerable ease with which these criminals take lives," and said that "this cannot continue." A municipal pilot program that is currently in place in 13 Israeli cities, and which involves the training of municipal inspectors and granting them police powers, will be expanded to every city, and CCTV cameras will continue to go up in urban centers and crime hot spots, the minister added.

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