A police officer who kicked an illegal migrant in the groin, causing him to lose a testicle, will do six months of community service and pay the plaintiff NIS 24,000.
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On Sunday, Judge Or Adam of the Be’er Sheva Magistrate’s Court commuted a 10-month prison sentence to community service; the suspended sentence is valid for three years. The court took into account the defendant’s dismissal from the police force and his good behavior before the incident.
Justice Ministry officials said they might appeal and seek a prison term.
The incident took place in April 2008 when the defendant and another officer in the mounted police were patrolling Gan Yavneh near Ashdod, looking for illegal migrants. They found the plaintiff, who had been working on a construction site.
After the man was taken into custody, one of the officers grabbed him, twisted his arm and questioned him about his employer. His partner then kicked him in the groin. At first, the plaintiff refused medical treatment, which may have worsened his condition.
The prosecution said the officer’s action damaged the police’s image as well, and that the crime was particularly severe since the officer had used unjustified violence, not just unreasonable force.
Psychological testing found nothing unusual in the officer’s mental makeup. The other police officer was reprimanded in a separate procedure.
Comments by the judge seem to belie the lenient ruling. “The crushing of a testicle, leading to its amputation, is no trivial matter,” Adam wrote in his ruling.
“It demonstrates the force with which the plaintiff was struck and caused real damage both physically and in other ways that are difficult to estimate and require no proof. The fact that the blow was struck by a police officer also requires that the offense be regarded with greater severity. The courts have said any number of times that any violence by police officers must be condemned using severe punishment.”