An indictment for murder was filed Sunday against members of a terrorist gang who threw a large stone into the windshield of 25 year old Asher Palmer's car as they drove past him on the road in the opposite direction.
The stone smashed through the windshield and struck Palmer in the face, causing him to lose control of his vehicle and roll off the road. Both Palmer and his infant son, Yonatan, were killed.
According to the indictment, those facing charges are members of a band of terrorists who have carried out a long list of such attacks in the region. The remand for the accused was extended until the end of their trial.
More charges are pending for the terrorist cell for similar attacks on other Israeli vehicles, whose results were - blessedly - less severe. At least 18 Israeli drivers reported similar attacks in the month following Palmer's death alone.
Also indicted was a member of the terror gang who looted Palmer's body and stole his weapon following the attack.
The indictment is seen as something of a victory by residents in Judea and Samaria, as immediately after the attack that killed Palmer and his son, police told local residents and reporters that the deaths were the result of 'driver error'. They said they were treating the incident as a 'traffic accident.'
Responding officers, however, were aware of evidence proving the contrary: a large hole in the front windshield of the car, a massive rock found in the front seat with human blood on it, a tear in fabric of the steering wheel cover, dust indicating a blow from the rock, and damage to Asher Palmer's face suggesting an impact unrelated to the crash – later confirmed by CT scans to have been caused by the rock.
The timing of the investigator's insistence that there did not appear to be foul play - concurrent with Prime Minister Netanyahu's visit to the USA to try to drum up support against PA chairman Mahmoud Abbas' bid to submit his now moribund application for statehood at the United Nations - led some to accuse police of perpetrating a cover up in order to keep the area quiet and prevent protests by Yesha residents.