Dei'ah veDibur - Information & Insight

A Window into the Chareidi World

26 Av 5765 - August 31, 2005 | Mordecai Plaut, director Published Weekly










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Shema Yisrael Torah Network
Shema Yisrael Torah Network











Chareidi Activists Prevented Autopsy or Postmortem

by Yated Ne'eman Staff

Chareidi public figures had to make concerted efforts to prevent a full autopsy on the kodosh Shmuel Mett Hy"d. After ZAKA volunteers completed their holy work at the scene of the attack other volunteers from the legal department began a battle to keep officials from transporting the body to the Forensics Institute at Abu Kabir.

Arriving at the hospital at 2:00 a.m. the chareidi activists had to physically prevent the body from being taken away for an autopsy. Even though the cause of death was absolutely clear to everyone, the police insisted on an autopsy. At 4:00 a.m. the police presented a proposal not to transport the body to Abu Kabir, but to only order a postmortem examination to be performed in the presence of a Magen David Adom volunteer and one of the surviving family members. In the morning hundreds of people arrived at Hadassah Ein Karem to help prevent the desecration of the deceased's body while a protest formed in the streets of Jerusalem to demand kovod hameis.

At a certain point HaRav Nachum Kook forged contact between Prof. Avi Rivkind, the director of the hospital's trauma department, and Commander Shaul Na'im, head of the Jerusalem Police Investigations Department. Dr. Rivkind gave eight reasons why neither an autopsy nor a postmortem examination was necessary, saying that as the treating physician he could confirm without a doubt that the cause of death was stabbing.

Na'im turned the matter over to the State's Attorney who agreed with Dr. Rivkind. The police then asked chareidi activists to publicize the decision in chareidi neighborhoods to prevent a demonstration from taking place. The demonstration was halted at the last minute, allowing the levaya to begin in the afternoon.

Police Video Cameras Documented Murder

Jerusalem Police asked HaRav Avigdor Neventzal, the rov of the Jewish Quarter, and HaRav Shmuel Rabinovitz, the rov of the Kosel Maarovi, to assure the public that the police is boosting its presence in the Old City significantly until the murderer is caught. Old City Police Commander Yoram Halevy says an examination of the video tape of the murder coupled with intelligence work will eventually lead police to the perpetrator and that it is merely a matter of time before he is apprehended.

The video from the security cameras positioned throughout the Old City showed that a third yeshiva student was also attacked but he managed to flee the scene without injury. Later he responded to a call for the unidentified victim to come forward to provide information on the attack. He said he had joined the other two because he was afraid to walk along Rechov David alone at night.

Jerusalem Mayor Rabbi Uri Lupoliansky spoke with the roshei yeshiva of Yeshivas Mir, expressing his shock over the incident and updating them on the steps the city is taking to guarantee the safety of Kosel visitors.

The Mayor also spoke with Jerusalem District Police Commander Ilan Franco about progress made in the investigation and about boosting security in the Old City. According to city officials there has been no significant change in the number of visitors to the Old City and the Kosel Maarovi.


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