An indictment for negligent manslaughter was filed on Wednesday in Jerusalem District Court against 18-year-old Tareq Kurd, following a tragic car accident in which a mother and her baby daughter died last month.
“In the aforementioned actions, the defendant showed negligence, taking unreasonable risks of causing the deaths and injuries of the passers-by and causing the deaths of Tzipi Rimmel and her daughter, Noam Rahel.”
Kurd, who was also moderately injured in the crash, was arrested twice after the accident. The first time, he was interrogated while in the hospital, arrested by police, and released after his blood tests came out negative for the presence of alcohol or drugs. The second time, he was arrested following new testimony from the police, but released after a few hours.
Ephraim Rimmel, husband and father of the victims, was released from the hospital earlier this month and moved to a rehabilitation center at the Sheba Medical Center in Tel Hashomer.
After gradually coming out of his coma, Rimmel was unaware that his wife and baby daughter had been killed in the accident, and was told by a friend about what had happened after he asked for his phone to speak with Tzipi.
The Rimmels were driving near Givat Ze’ev, north of Jerusalem, with their 12-year-old son, Itai, and daughter, Noam, who was just three weeks old, when their vehicle was struck from behind by Kurd’s car as they were waiting at a traffic light.
Kurd, from east Jerusalem, was reportedly traveling at a speed of 170 kph and had very little experience driving a manual shift car.
According to the indictment articles filed against Kurd, “from the time the defendant received his driver’s license up until the accident, the defendant had driven a vehicle with a manual gearbox only a few times, and his driving experience in this type of vehicle was very poor.”
The indictment continues: “Given that he had purchased the vehicle a few days prior to the crash, the defendant decided to take a ‘test drive’ in the vehicle, to see how the vehicle responds at high speeds. During the ride, the speed of his journey increased to a speed of about 170 kph.”
An online fund-raising campaign has raised more than NIS 4 million for the family since the accident, which will be used in part to make their home wheelchair accessible.
Tzipi’s brother, Raziel Gantz, said regarding the charges against Kurd: “We are here so there will be no more such accidents and no more injuries. There is no penalty that would suffice in such a case; hoping the court will give the most severe punishment.”