Suspect Named in Leiby Kletzky Murder
Levi Aron, 35, was arrested by police after implicating himself in the murder of 8-year old Leiby Kletzky who had been missing since Monday.
By Fern Sidman & Gavriel Queenann
First Publish: 7/13/2011, 10:26 PM / Last Update: 7/13/2011, 10:02 PM
According to CBS News and the "Matzav" website, records from a dentist’s office led police to Levi Aron, 35, who was arrested for the murder of eight year old Leiby Kletzky, who had been missing since Monday.
NYC Police Commissioner Ray Kelly confirmed the NYPD had taken Aron into custody after he implicated himself in the horrific slaying.
Around 2:40 a.m., detectives went to Aron’s home at 466 East Second Street in the Kensington section of Brooklyn where they found part of Kletzky’s mutilated body inside a refrigerator. When investigators arrived at the home, they asked where the boy was and Aron pointed to the kitchen where they found blood on the refrigerator handle.
“Inside the refrigerator was a cutting board with three carving knives with blood on them,” said Kelly. “Some of the remains were in the freezer.”
Detectives found the rest of Leiby’s dismembered body wrapped in a black plastic garbage bag inside a red suitcase in a dumpster in Sunset Park, about two miles from Aron’s home. The medical examiner’s office will determine the official cause of death. Police used two surveillance videos to search for clues in Kletzky’s disappearance.
One video showed the young boy leaving his day camp, located at 12th Avenue and 44th Street, at 5:05 p.m. and walking past his home on 15th Avenue. He was supposed to meet his mother at 5 p.m. Monday at the corner of 13th Avenue and 50th Street.
Kelly said police believe Leiby got lost on his way home and stopped at 18th Avenue and 44th Street, where he is seen on video talking to Aron and is later seen getting into Aron’s gold-colored sedan. Kelly said there was no indication he knew the suspect.
Police say, according to statement Aron made, that he brought the boy to his apartment, killed him there and dismembered the body. Aron was tracked down after police detectives looking for Kletzky noticed a man on the video going into a nearby dentist’s office around 5:30 p.m. Monday while Leiby waited to cross the street.
The dentist, who was later found in New Jersey, said Aron wasn’t a patient but was paying a bill for a patient there and police were able to find him using those records.
Leiby’s disappearance prompted an intense search, with much of the frum community taking to the streets to look for the boy. The FBI also issued an Amber alert. Kelly said Aron told detectives he panicked after seeing flyers of Leiby around the neighborhood and killed the boy.
Assemblyman Dov Hikind said the boy was the only son of the Kletzky’s five children and said the husband works as a driver for a private car service.
“It’s just a horror for every parent,” Hikind said. “I mean it’s just a tragedy today for everyone in New York.”
Leiby had reportedly begged his parents to let him walk home alone. They had given him a note, saying he would not be taking the bus. Kelly said that his parents had gone over the route Leiby was supposed to take home with him before letting him walk it alone.
“They were hopeful yesterday when the child was not there, hoping that they’ll find him, but now forget it,” Hikind said. “How does a parent live with their little child brutally assaulted, murdered, dismembered?”
Hikind said the parents do not know Aron, who lived about a mile away from the boy.
Police say Aron had lived alone in the third-floor apartment in a building shared with his parents for two years, Kelly said. Police determined Aron had worked on and off as a driver for a Brooklyn maintenance supply business for 12 years.
Between stints as a driver for the company, he lived for two years in Tennessee, where he was briefly employed as a private security guard.
There, he was married to a woman named Debbie Kivel, who once took out an order of protection against him, according to court records.
Her grandmother, Ruth Kivel, said she did not know why the two divorced and was stunned by the news.
"I'm surprised," she said. "I thought he was nice."
Levi Aron, 35
Editor's Note: Arutz Sheva felt we had both a journalistic obligation to provide Levi Aron's picture and a moral obligation not to give him any possible "glory" by naming him in the article headline and putting his picture on our homepage. We did not want to see his face on the site. As such, his picture appears in-line.
Tags: Leiby Kletzky