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Israeli officer charged in murder of autistic Palestinian

Eyad Hallaq was fatally shot just inside the Old City’s Lion’s Gate on May 30, 2020.

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On Thursday, Israeli prosecutors incriminated a border police officer with hasty murder in the fatal shelling of an autistic Palestinian man in Jerusalem’s Old City the previous year.

The verdict came just over a year after the execution of Eyad Hallaq. Hallaq’s family had previously slated the Israeli authorities’ investigation into Eyad’s murder and had called for much stronger charges.

The cop, who remains anonymous in the accusation submitted to the Jerusalem District Court on Thursday, was charged with reckless murder, and if sentenced could face up to 12 years in prison.

Hallaq was mortally hit in the premises of the Old City’s Lion’s Gate on May 30, 2020, as he was heading towards the special-needs institution that he attended.

The area is a recurrent spot of clatters amid Palestinians and Israeli security forces, and the Old City’s tapered roads are structured with a bulk of security cameras that are observed by police. Nonetheless, as the inquiry proceeded last summer, prosecutors asserted that none of the cameras in the area was functional, and there was no tape of the event.

Prosecutors from the police interior investigations department held in a report that the judgment to charge the officer “was made after deep examination of the evidence, examination of all the circumstances of the incident and the claims heard during the officer’s hearing.” They believed that Hallaq’s death was a “serious and unfortunate incident” and that the officer shot him “while he took an unreasonable risk that he would cause his death.”

According to explanations at the time, Hallaq was murdered after running away and fading to heed calls to stopover.

Hallaq’s murder sketched appraisals to the mortality of George Floyd in the U.S. and prompted a series of small demonstrations against police violence. The upheaval crossed Israeli-Palestinian boundaries. Israeli leaders uttered sorrow over the shooting.

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