Deadly shooting in Lod leaves locals on edge

Woman killed in attack that was likely result of dispute between Arab clans; in Dimona, 43-year-old man shot to death, execution-style.

Police car in Tel Aviv at night 311 (photo credit: Yoni Cohen)
Police car in Tel Aviv at night 311
(photo credit: Yoni Cohen)
Several women wearing white head coverings sat in mourning at a home in Lod on Tuesday where, several hours earlier, a gunman approached in a vehicle and opened fire in all directions.
The shots killed 50-year-old Hadra Abu Gariba, seriously wounded her husband and lightly wounded her two children.
The murder scene is situated on Rehov Katznelson just a few dozen meters from Lod’s main police station, which is usually crawling with officers – one of whom ran toward the attacker and opened fire at the car before it fled the scene.
On Tuesday, about a dozen members of the Border Police, armed with M-16s rifles, patroled the street.
Police arrested a suspect in connection with the shooting on Tuesday and said the violence was likely the result of a dispute between families and clans within the Arab community.
More arrests were expected, they said.
Across the street from the house, a stray bullet pierced the front window of a business, leaving a large hole and cracks as a reminder. No one was inside at the time.
“The feeling is awful,” a local, who asked not to be named, told The Jerusalem Post. “I feel disgust. It’s a disgrace. Every kid has a gun and is shooting here,” he said.
“I brought my wife here from Rishon Lezion. I always defended Lod from its critics. But after this, I’m not sure we’ll stay. We, the local residents, are crying out, ‘Help us!’” the man said.
The resident said the police were operating in the city “as if it were a normal place, but this is not enough for a place like Lod.”
A second local, Yitzhak, who did not want to give his last name, was drinking coffee while sitting at a sidewalk table near the shooting scene.
“I don’t feel threatened. They fight among themselves,” he said. “The family is good. But in the [Arab] community, it’s enough to say a word in the wrong place.”
Israel Police Insp.-Gen. Yochanan Danino visited Lod on Tuesday, and described the shooting as a “very severe incident,” but added that it did not cancel out the progress made by police and local authorities in the city in recent months.
Police have intensified arms raids in the city and have called on members of the Arab community to inform them of impending violence in an effort to increase trust between police and the community.
“The fate of cities like Lod and Rahat will be the same as the fate of Tel Aviv,” Danino said. “We have reached some of the suspects and we will get to the others.”
Last month, the husband of a woman brutally gunned down outside a cemetery in Lod was arrested on suspicion of her murder, as well as an attempt on her life six months ago.
Meanwhile, late Tuesday night, a 43-year-old man was shot to death at a commercial center in the southern city of Dimona.
Witnesses said a speeding motorcyclist shot the man several times in the upper body.
Dimona Police officers were searching for the assailant.
A paramedic said the man still had a pulse when he was found, but that the killer shot him in the head to confirm he was dead. A Magen David Adom doctor pronounced the man dead when resuscitation attempts failed.