Solomon Teka's family protests
Solomon Teka's family protestsShir Torem, Flash 90

Five years after Solomon Teka was shot to death by a police officer, the Haifa Magistrate's Court decided on Tuesday to acquit the officer.

The Department of Police Investigations accused the police officer of causing death by negligence - and he was acquitted of the crime.

The verdict states, among other things, that "The boys who witnessed the incident are liars. It can’t be claimed that they lied because of their age. They were found to be unreliable because they contradicted unequivocal findings. Stones were thrown at the accused. The deceased held stones and the accused was hit by stones."

"Alcohol and hashish acid were found in the deceased’s body fluids and according to the experts, the active substance can cause euphoria and delusions, and could have impaired his judgment," the judge added.

He further wrote, "The defendant described his response, the threat he felt to his life that led him to the decision to shoot and explained why he avoided shooting in the air. All the shooting training that the defendant and other police officers had undergone did not include deterrent firing to the ground.”

“I have found the defendant's version to be credible and supported by forensic evidence. I was convinced that even though his life, as well as the life of his family, and even though he had the authority to shoot at the person posing a danger, that is, Solomon Teka, he decided to shoot at Teka’s side, in the hope that the risk would pass with minimal damage."

The prosecutor on behalf of the Department of Police Investigations, Ronen Yitzhak, claimed during the trial that the warning shots that the officer fired at the road, and not into the air, were against training orders and therefore constituted negligence.

On the other hand, defense attorney Yair Nadashi claimed that the police officer was in danger after he was hit by two stones before the shooting, and therefore he was entitled to shoot in order to injure, that is, according to him, there could be no negligence in his actions.