Beersheba killer told court needed gun for defense

Court transcript from 2011 reveals Alon's "winning argument" for keeping his weapon was that his life was in danger.

Beersheba bank tragedy390(1) (photo credit: Rotem Regev)
Beersheba bank tragedy390(1)
(photo credit: Rotem Regev)
With rampant finger-pointing over how and why Itamar Alon – who shot and killed four people in a Beersheba bank on Monday – had a weapon despite an earlier police request to confiscate his weapon, the courts sent out a copy of the transcript of the hearing over confiscating his weapon.
The court transcript from August 8, 2011 reveals that Alon’s “winning argument” for keeping his weapon appeared to be that his life was in danger and he needed the weapon for self-defense.
In an incident in 2002, Alon ran to the site of a terror attack at an IDF base in Beersheba and shot and killed one of the terrorists.
Alon told the court that the terrorist’s family was planning to kill him and that he had even tried to cover up his identity, but that once his identity as the “hero” who killed the terrorist was made public, he was in permanent danger without a weapon.
He told the court that “I did things for the public, for the State of Israel” and that if the family of the terrorist “know that I do not have a weapon, the consequences would be fatal” and the expected “harm would be definite.”
Alon claimed that the family had killed other members of the security forces in the past.
On the day of the hearing, the police did not even show up on time, and the court postponed the hearing until later in the day. Eventually the police appeared and said that it objected to Alon having a weapon because he was under investigation for causing property damage to his neighbors – who are his parents – and interfering with police work.
The police representative added that the investigator who interrogated Alon following an incident involving his parents believed that he posed a danger to them. The representative argued there was no basis for returning the confiscated weapon to Alon until the case was fully investigated.
Alon contradicted the police account, stating that he had neither been asked any questions nor spoken to the investigator.
The police representative responded defensively to try to explain why an investigation for property damage suggested that Alon posed any danger.
He eventually admitting that Alon had not been interrogated regarding the issue of posing a danger to his parents, and simply said that the police demand to confiscate the weapon was “within the authority of a police commander.”
The court left the door open to the police to question Alon further, but essentially decided that without having questioned him about anything violent, the police had overstepped its bounds.