Police over the weekend arrested a “religious Jew” on charges of grand theft auto – only to discover that he was really an Arab, who had tried to avoid suspicion by wearing a knitted kippah. “If this was supposed to be his Purim costume, he was a week late,” quipped one of the arresting officers.
Police on patrol in northern Tel Aviv discovered a cache of stolen vehicles in a local parking lot. The vehicles had been reported stolen by residents of the neighborhood just days before. Apparently the parking lot was a way station for the car thief, police reasoned, and they staked out the scene, awaiting the return of the thief, whom they were sure would try to collect the vehicles.
Late Thursday, police noticed a young person – wearing a knitted kippah, in the style of national religious youth – approach the vehicles. The youth entered one of the vehicles and tried to start it up. Police moved in and arrested him. Police said that at first they thought they had arrested a Jewish youth, and were very confused, since property crime by this segment of the population is extremely rare. However, they quickly discovered that the culprit was an Arab, who had apparently found or otherwise acquired the Jewish religious garb, in an effort to throw suspicion off him.
The youth was taken to court Friday, and his remand was extended to Tuesday. Police relieved him of his knitted kippah before hauling him off to detention.