Palestinian charged in killing of 14 year old West Bank shepherd

Ahmed Duabsha had intended to murder more Jews but got scared by a dog and returned home, according to the charges filed at Ofer Military Court


The Palestinian who murdered a 14-year-old Israeli shepherd in the West Bank in April had intended to kill more Jews, according to an indictment made public on Thursday afternoon.

Ahmed Duabsha was arrested on April 22, 10 days after he murdered Binyamin Achimeir, who went missing while herding sheep at Gal Farm, located 17 miles northeast of Ramallah.

During initial questioning by Israeli security forces, Duabsha tied himself to the attack, the Israel Security Agency said in April.

Israel’s Ynet outlet, citing from a redacted indictment on Thursday, said that the Duma resident and his friends became interested in jihad and Islamic State approximately a year before he carried out the murder.

“The suspect decided that he would go on a killing spree the next morning at first light,” read the charges, filed at Ofer Military Court. “He took a knife of around 20 centimeters [8 inches] long, picked out clothes and laid down in his room. The next day, he put on his clothes, prayed, took the knife in his sheath and put a black scarf on his head.”

Large parts of the unsealed indictment were redacted due to the graphic nature of the murder, Ynet stated. Local media reported in April that there was a long struggle between Achimeir and Duabsha, and that some of the teenager’s clothing items were found scattered near his body.

“Duabsha brandished the knife, shouted at the deceased, ‘I will kill you,’ and started to chase him. While trying to escape, the deceased fell to the ground and the terrorist caught up. Achimeir stood up and tried to defend himself against the accused,” the indictment states.

Following the murder, Duabsha looked for additional victims in the area, including at Gal Farm, but got frightened by a dog in the area and returned home as he “got tired,” the indictment continues.

Late last month, Israeli media aired for the first time security camera footage showing the moments following the teen’s murder. The video shows Duabsha brandishing a knife near the entrance to Gal Farm.

Attorney Haim Bleicher of the Honenu legal defense group, who represents the Achimeir family in court, told Israeli media on Thursday that his clients have demanded that Duabsha “be tried before a panel of judges who have the authority to impose the death penalty.

“The people of Israel are fighting a murderous enemy that has lost all humanity,” said the Israeli lawyer, adding: “We must fight the enemy without compromise, defeat them and destroy them.”

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