On the eve of his sentencing hearing for the murder of his 4-year-old granddaughter, convicted killer Ronny Ron asked the Petah Tikva District Court yesterday to hear new evidence in the case - about his expertise in martial arts.
Ron asserted that this expertise is what turned the slap he claims to have given his granddaughter, Rose Pizem, into a fatal blow, and evidence of it could thus strengthen his claim that he didn't kill her intentionally.
But the judges seem unlikely to give much weight to this assertion, as their verdict rejected Ron's entire account of the fatal blow as "unreasonable and not credible."
Last week, Ron's new defense attorney, Benyamin Nahari, told the court he had just learned something from Ron that might affect his sentence, and asked for time to investigate it. At the time, he didn't specify what he had learned, but it now turns out the new fact was Ron's martial arts experience.
In a letter sent to the court yesterday, Nahari wrote that Ron was an expert in several martial arts, including Kung Fu and Krav Maga, and even spent several years training elite army units in these methods, "whose emphasis is on quickly neutralizing the target via a single, precisely-aimed, fatal blow.
"Someone who trained for years in these techniques and then, "in the heat of the moment, struck a young girl in the face could certainly cause her death through pure haste, unintentionally," the letter argued.
But in the verdict that convicted both Ron and Marie-Charlotte Renault - who is Rose's mother, Ron's daughter-in-law and also his live-in lover - the judges stressed that the pair's behavior after Rose's death belied the claim that her death was unintentional. For instance, instead of taking her to the hospital, Ron dumped her body in a suitcase and threw it in the river.
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