Palestinian man convicted of murdering Esther Horgen

Mohammad Maroh Kabaha smashed Esther Horgen's head repeatedly with a large rock.

Esther Horgen (photo credit: COURTESY THE FAMILY)
Esther Horgen
(photo credit: COURTESY THE FAMILY)

The Salem Military Court on Wednesday convicted Palestinian Mohammad Maroh Kabaha for the murder of Esther Horgen on December 20, 2020, following his confession.

According to the indictment filed in February, Kabaha planned the attack some six weeks in advance.

One reason was to avenge the death of his friend Camal Abu Wae’r – a Palestinian prisoner who fell sick and died in jail.

Looking for a place to carry out an attack, Kabaha allegedly went through a hole in the security barrier, and found that a number of Israelis took strolls in the Rehan Forest.

On December 20, while smuggling cigarettes in the forest near the fence, he spotted Horgen, who was walking alone.

Mohammad Maroh Kabaha, the suspect behind the murder of Esther Horgen. (credit: SHIN BET)Mohammad Maroh Kabaha, the suspect behind the murder of Esther Horgen. (credit: SHIN BET)

When their eyes met, she tried to run and scream, but he caught up to her after a race of about 15 meters and threw her to the ground.

He then allegedly smashed her head repeatedly with a large rock until she was dead.

He then went home, showered, changed his clothes and fled into the hills.

Israeli security forces located and arrested him days later.

The Horgen family and its lawyer, former IDF West Bank chief prosecutor Maurice Hirsch, praised the conviction, slammed the Palestinian Authority, saying that it has created an atmosphere of incitement that encouraged Kabaha to commit the murder.

Sentencing arguments are set for December 14.