Woman pushed off balcony can't return to Israel to testify

Charlotte Alberado from Colombia was pushed off a four-story balcony in Israel in 2018.

 View of the Magistrate's Court in Jerusalem on August 15, 2018. (photo credit: YONATAN SINDEL/FLASH90)
View of the Magistrate's Court in Jerusalem on August 15, 2018.
(photo credit: YONATAN SINDEL/FLASH90)

Charlotte Alberado, a 32-year-old Colombian woman, is struggling to return to Israel to testify against Shaul Karni, 32, who finally admitted to police that he pushed Alberado – the mother of their daughter – off of their fourth-floor balcony in Samaria in 2018.

The story began when the enraged Karni shoved his then-girlfriend Alberado off their balcony in the midst of crazed arguments and hostile behavior throughout that evening.

"I remember that evening like it was yesterday. He jailed me for a whole day at home with Melanie and his sister's kids, and when he came back he was nervous and yelled at me,” Alberado told Channel 13. She then went out to see friends, not returning home until later that night.

"I put the girl in bed on the third floor and Saul called me to hang a blanket on the balcony upstairs. It seemed strange to me but I was scared. I went up [to the balcony]... suddenly he became nice to me. He was interested in my well-being, had a small talk with me. It was strange."

Alberado then pushed her off of the four-story balcony. She suffered numerous injuries and was hospitalized, later falling into a coma.

Despite the fractures in her body and ample surveillance – nearby houses had cameras – police investigators ruled she fell accidentally and told her no evidence was found. She was informed that the case was closed due to a lack of evidence and was deported to Colombia after being discharged from the hospital.

Her stepmother tried to come to Israel and assist her, but she was denied entry into Israel at Ben-Gurion Airport. Alberado’s subsequent efforts to get answers out of the consulate in Colombia have failed, and she has even struggled to gain full custody of their daughter.

Last Friday, the story took a stunning turn when Karni finally confessed to his crime at the Petah Tikvah police station, saying that he even tried to find her at the hospital so he could kill her. "He did not locate her and averted a disaster," according to Judea and Samaria Police, who are conducting an investigation.

 An Israel Police forensic investigator is seen at the scene of the crime in Beit Shemesh on October 30, 2021 (credit: ISRAEL POLICE) An Israel Police forensic investigator is seen at the scene of the crime in Beit Shemesh on October 30, 2021 (credit: ISRAEL POLICE)

"I do not know what made him do it," Alberado declared.

According to her, authorities have not granted her approval to return to Israel to testify against her assailant, adding that she was told that she needs Karni’s permission to enter the country. “I do not understand it – the man who tried to murder me decides if I will come to testify at his trial?"

Alberado, with the help of her current partner in Colombia – who is also Israeli – is attempting to get back into Israel after being deported and shut out by Israeli local and consular authorities for over three years.

"He is a lying and manipulative man. Beware of anything he says or promises," she said. "Look what happened to me."

Karni's defense attorney Fadi Hamdan is not convinced Karni had a sudden change of heart, arguing instead that he suffers from mental illness. "There is a poor man here in a very serious mental condition, who came to the police station and said what he said, without receiving any advice from an expert lawyer in criminal law," Hamdan told Israeli media.