A 20-year-old Be’er Sheva man was convicted Sunday of first-degree murder in the 2012 stabbing of Gadi Vichman, 35, following an argument over excessive noise in a public park. The Be’er Sheva District Court sentenced Eden Ohayon to life in prison and payment of NIS 200,000 to Vichman’s widow.
When the ruling was announced, Ohayon’s relatives began screaming and cursing the widow, Michal Levy. A scuffle broke out in the courtroom and the hearing was stopped briefly until order could be restored. Three people were taken into custody.
The three judges had deliberated over whether to convict Ohayon of manslaughter or murder. Reading the verdict, Judge Revital Katz said that Ohayon could have run from Vichman like his friends did, but instead he remained behind “just to spite.” With regard to the complaint that Vichman had head-butted Ohayon, Katz said that this “could not justify such an extreme act” by Ohayon.
Ohayon, who was armed with a kitchen knife, stabbed Vichman in the heart and then twisted the knife.
Ohayon’s attorney, Eli Cohen said: “According to our understanding the court has made a serious mistake. The evidence was incontrovertible. The deceased came down to a group of teens and head-butted Eden, which needed to be dealt with. The court did not see this action of the deceased and ruled that Eden should have run away.”
Cohen said the Supreme Court would have to rule on the matter.
According to the indictment, Ohayon was in the park that Friday night with three male friends and a girlfriend. The charge sheet noted that he usually carried a kitchen knife.
When the teens began making noise late one Friday night under the window of Vichman and Levy’s Be’er Sheva home, Levy went out to their balcony and shouted to them to be quiet. When the noise continued, Vichman went out to the balcony and repeated the demand. In response, the indictment said, “the defendant cursed the deceased and called him a ‘son of a whore.’”
Levy then called the police, who promised to send a patrol car, but never did. The noise continued, and at 2:15 A.M. Vichman went downstairs and into the park to confront the teens. After head-butting Ohayon, which gave him a split lip, Ohayon stabbed Vichman, who bled to death at the scene.
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