Military court convicts Palestinian of murder in rock-throwing attack

JERUSALEM (JTA) — An Israeli military court convicted a Palestinian security officer of the murder of an Israeli man and his infant son in a rock-throwing incident.

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Asher Palmer, 25, and his infant son Yonatan, were killed in September 2011 when the car Asher Palmer was driving overturned after a rock crashed through the windshield of his car. Police first called the car crash an accident, but later found a large bloodstained rock in the car and deemed it a terror attack.

The Ofer Base Military Court on Tuesday convicted Waal al-Araja of throwing stones from a moving car toward the Palmer’s car on Route 60 near Kiryat Arba in the West Bank.

Al-Araja admitted during the trial that he threw the rocks, but said that he did not intend to kill anyone, Ynet reported. 

In their verdict, the judges said that Al-Araja understood the harm that throwing rocks could cause and that he intended to harm his victims. They also said that al-Araja’s accomplices called the rock throwing jihad, and said that it was in retaliation for arson attacks on West Bank mosques, according to Ynet. 

Palmer was a dual Israeli-American citizen.

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