Probe: Cop Who Fired Into Air at Chareidi Protest Acted Appropriately


protestA Yerushalayim district policeman who fired into the air during a chareidi protest about three weeks ago acted appropriately, according to the officer appointed to investigate the incident. The investigating officer said the policeman who discharged his weapon did so because he thought his life was endangered. Stones were thrown at him, and he drew his weapon in self-defense to disperse the crowd that had gathered, it was found.The investigation concluded his weapon use was “proportionate” and appropriate under the circumstances. The findings were send to National Police Headquarters, where a decision will be made whether to adopt the investigator’s conclusions.

The Yerushalayim district deputy police commander, Brig. Gen. Niso Shaham, presented the findings yesterday at a Knesset Interior and Environment Committee hearing on police violence directed at chareidi demonstrators in Yerushalayimin recent weeks. At the hearing, MKs Uri Maklev and Moshe Gafni (United Torah Judaism) complained about the use of tear gas and stun grenades and live ammunition fire to disperse demonstrators.

Shaham described the incident under investigation as exceptional and unconnected to the regular demonstrations over the Shabbos opening of the Karta parking garage or the arrest of the Meah Shearim mother accused of starving her son.

The confrontation with the policeman occurred shortly after a murder the end of August at a Yerushalayim hostel. Dozens of ultra-Orthodox Jews came to the hostel to prevent the body of the victim (who was known to the police as a criminal) from being removed. The demonstrators were upset that the police planned to send the body for an autopsy. The demonstrators threw rocks at police, who left in an armored vehicle that was sent to extricate them.

Thirteen police cruisers were damaged in the incident, including one set on fire, and two police motorcycles were destroyed. Several policemen were also injured; one officer has not yet returned to work after a blow to the head.

{Haaretz/Yair Israel}


  1. Self defense is self defense. Rocks thrown at cars, burning tires can all do physical damage, live ammunition SHOULD NOT be used, rather try the rubber bullets.

  2. Comment #1: You’re right -> Live ammunition should NOT be used.

    Perhaps next time he’ll simply go back to the station and exchange his ammunition before returning and firing in the air.

    Who are any of us to comment on Israeli or any other countries riot (demonstration) control tactics. The people of the country are acutely aware of the procedures and the potential consequences.

    Some countries are more lenient than other but one thing is clear, once violence is thrust upon them in what ever form it takes, these trained professionals are equipped to deal with it both in terms of legally registered equipment and the laws of the country