Monday, June 17, 2013

Hate crime?

On the evening of Aug 1, 2009, a masked gunman burst into the Bar Noar gay youth club in Tel Aviv and started shooting.  Two youths were killed and nine wounded.  Then the gunman disappeared.  Of course, this was labelled a "hate crime" and police investigated it assuming that the perpetrator was an anti-gay activist.
The police had no leads until 4 months ago, when a prisoner offered evidence that caused a sensation.  He claimed that the shooter was a relative of a 15 year old boy who had been raped by the founder and youth counsellor at the club.   But at first this story was not allowed to be published, since there was a court imposed gag order against publication.  Then the gag order was lifted for a day and then reinstated and then finally lifted.  Apart from the futility of the gag order, unfortunatey, this prisoner is not a reliable witness, and the lawyer for the defense of the counsellor denied all his claims.  However, after the final lifting of the gag order the name of the counsellor was published and he is Shaul Ganon an LGBT activist who was ironically the spokesman for the Youth Center in the aftermath of the shootings.
The people arrested for the shooting are Hagai Felician, who is an older brother of the youth who was allegedly raped, and two of his friends.  According to police, Felician went to the youth club to shoot Ganon, but unaccountably, when he found that Ganon was not there, he instead randomly shot those who were present.  So far there is no explanation for this apparently pointless killing.  Of course, many LGBT activists refuse to accept this story and still cling to the belief that the shooting in the Bar Noar club was indeed a "hate-crime."
In order to facilitate the unraveling of this story, Ganon has been given immunity by the police for his testimony regarding the events leading up to the shooting.  That means that if he did rape the 15 year old he cannot be tried for the crime.  However, another young woman has come forward and claimed that Ganon raped her also.  So he can be tried for that rape, if it goes to trial.  In the meantime the police claim that they have found a second wtriness to the events that triggered the shooting as well as the problematical prisoner who has a long criminal record.  When or if it goes to trial this story will certainly make further news.


Post a Comment

<< Home