Man arrested for stabbing Eritrean baby ordered kept in custody

The suspect, a Tel Aviv resident in his 50s named Mordechai Zertzky, appeared confused and somewhat agitated in court.

Handcuffs (illustrative photo) 370 (photo credit: Reuters)
Handcuffs (illustrative photo) 370
(photo credit: Reuters)

A man arrested forthe stabbing of an Eritrean baby on Friday night in Tel Aviv wasordered kept in custody for six days so that the state can assess hismental well-being and fitness to stand trial.

The suspect, a TelAviv resident in his 50s named Mordechai Zertzky, appeared confusedand somewhat agitated in court, and at one point shoved his attorneyand was physically removed from the hearing by court security guards.

Zertzky's attorneysaid his client wants to return to his native Russia to be withfamily, who can take care of him.

Contrary to policereports, Zertzky's attorney said his client was not drunk at the timeof the incident, which he said was caused by his mental illness.

Zertzky allegedlystabbed the baby in the head with a pair of scissors, penetrating itsskull, according to an Israeli volunteer whohas been assisting the infant's parents at Ichilov Hospital.

The volunteer saidthat after the man stabbed the baby the mother handed it to herhusband and then chased after the man, eventually drawing a crowdthat held him until police arrived.

The baby,according to the volunteer, remains in serious condition.