Lital Yael Melnik
Lital Yael Melnik Courtesy of the family

The Haifa Magistrates Court on Sunday lifted a gag order on the identity of the individual suspected of murdering Lital Yael Melnik, who was found dead earlier this month at a construction site in the northern city of Kiryat Motzkin.

Eddy (Edward) Kachura, 49, who works as a nurse in the Maaleh Carmel psychiatric institution in Tirat Hacarmel, has been named as the primary suspect in the murder, and his arrest has been extended by a week.

Kachura is a resident of Kiryat Motzkin, and is divorced and a father to two teenagers. He has been employed in Maaleh Hacarmel for 12 years, and it was there that he met Melnik, who at one point was a patient in the institution.

It is suspected that Kachura and Melnik developed an intimate relationship which continued for approximately one year. It is also suspected that Melnik was buried alive, and that she died after choking on sand.

Attorney Boris Sherman, who is representing Kachura as a public attorney, said that "the suspect has given a detailed version of the event, and it is under gag order. The court, we assume, saw his version, and the police are now investigating it. We hope that in the end, he will be released."

"The suspect, for the first time in his life, found himself interrogated and arrested. By the way, in contrast to various reports, the police backtracked and investigated the issue: The suspect was never interrogated under warning on suspicion of committing any crime. Now he is in a very complex situation - he is undergoing long interrogations, for hours upon hours, day after day... His situation is definitely complicated.

"It has already been published in the past that there was a romance - according to us, this was something that was legal. The ethical issue obviously is not relevant here. From a legal perspective, the dead girl's age was such that allowed consensual relations - even if the man was older than her."

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