'Witnesses contradict Marciano'

Police to renew investigation into barroom brawl, sexual assault allegations.

MarcianoYoram 224 (photo credit: Ariel Jerozolimski [file])
MarcianoYoram 224
(photo credit: Ariel Jerozolimski [file])
Police will resume their investigation on Monday into Wednesday's brawl at the "Rio" nightclub in Herzliya, allegedly involving Labor faction whip MK Yoram Marciano's, Army Radio reported on Friday morning. Police sources said that there were major gaps between Marciano's account of the incident and eyewitness reports. Marciano's night at the Herzliya club may become the focus of a number of investigations, as allegations emerged Thursday that Marciano may have sexually assaulted several young women there as well as engaging in a violent confrontation with security guards.
  • Analysis: The Knesset's scandalous Purimspiel Marciano attended a party at the Rio nightclub on Wednesday celebrating the birthday of a Knesset official. According to witnesses there, Marciano was seen cuddling several young female parliamentary assistants, and kissed one of them inappropriately. "She wasn't sure what to make of it. He has always been affectionate guy, and she was just shocked and a little confused," said one parliamentary aide who spoke with the young woman. "She has not yet decided whether she will do anything about it." Marciano released a statement calling the accusation "baseless." Meanwhile, police are looking into a violent confrontation between the MK and security guards at the club. According to a police complaint filed by Marciano, the incident occurred when he was trying to leave the club through a back door, which was no longer used as an exit, and was apprehended by security guards. According to a conflicting report filed by one of the security guards, Marciano himself struck out at the guards and shouted at them that they were mistreating a public official. Police said that they were reviewing videotapes from the bar to determine who initiated the fighting. Several witnesses told Army Radio that Marciano was drunk and acting erratically at the time of the incident. Marciano has said that he was the victim and not the villain. "I was drinking normally, like any person who attends a party. As you probably know, you don't drink instant coffee when you go out to a pub. I'm a human being too… What I had to drink is my own business. Drinking is permitted by law," Marciano told Army Radio.