Shop Owner Stabbed to Death by Customer in Netanya

A passerby who works as a security guard caught the assailant after a chase and held him until the police arrived.

A Netanya shop owner was stabbed to death Friday, apparently following an argument with two customers over money. The victim, Vladimir Pisahov, 29, of Hadera was knifed outside of his cellphone store by a customer who had purchased a phone from the store.

According to police, on Friday at about 4 P.M., Pisahov noticed the suspect, a 40-year-old man, and his 27-year-old brother, outside the store. He went outside to meet the men, and according to witnesses, Pisahov pushed the brother of the suspect. An argument then ensued, during which one of the men stabbed Pisahov, who fell to the ground. The assailant fled, leaving the other man at the scene, apparently too shocked to move. A passerby who works as a security guard caught the assailant after a chase and held him until the police arrived.

Police at the scene of Friday’s fatal stabbing in central Netanya.
Moti Milrod

Pisahov was pronounced dead at Laniado Hospital in Netanya. The 40-year-old suspect, who said he had attacked Pisahov in self defense, said he and his brother were having a beer near Pisahov's store and had not intended to enter the store. The suspect also said that Pisahov and his brother both came out of the store and began to chase him and his brother.

Pisahov and his brother then hit the suspect's brother over the head with a beer bottle and began to beat him up to the point where he fell to the ground, claims the suspect. He said that while he was trying to help his brother, he found a knife. He denied that he had brought the knife to the scene.

Police say they believe the suspect and his brother had bought a cellphone from Pisahov's store and that the fatal argument began over money owed. They say that the man they have in custody is definitely the one who stabbed Pisahov and they think that he had the knife with him when he arrived at the scene.

A cousin of the victim said at the family's Hadera home on Saturday that Pisahov's brother had not told the family much about what had happened and that he was in shock. "Vlady died in his arms," he said referring to Pisahov, adding that as far as he knew, the victim did not know his attackers, or had at most seen them around town.

The attorney for the suspect, Yashar Yaakobi of the Public Defender's Office, said on Saturday that the case was "classic self-defense." "My client was sitting with his brother when he was attacked with bottles to the head and feared for his life. My client feared for his brother's life and decided to come to his aid.

Revital Hovel contributed to this report.