Attorney General: No 'Civil Suit' Compensation for Police Chief Killed in Carmel Wildfire

Haifa's district court should dismiss a the NIS 2 million lawsuit brought by the partner of Haifa's fallen police chief, attorney general says.

The Haifa District Court should reject the lawsuit brought forth by the partner of the Haifa police chief, who was killed in the Carmel wildfire, the state's attorney general said on Tuesday.

Dani Rozen, the partner of Haifa Police Chief Ahuva Tomer, has demanded 2,000,000 shekels in monetary compensation for negligence by the state and by Interior Minister Eli Yishai. Tomer was killed in the December wildfire which destroyed much of the country's Carmel region and took the lives of 44 people.

The police chief was critically injured while driving behind a bus full of prison guards that burned up in the flames. She succumbed to her wounds shortly thereafter.

Attorney General Yehuda Weinstein said in response to Rozen's lawsuit on Tuesday that Tomer was killed while on duty as police chief, which disqualifies her from compensation that a civilian may receive in similar circumstances.

tomer - Tomer Neuberg - December 2 2010
Tomer Neuberg

Earlier this month, Yishai had placed the blame for the fire on Tomer's shoulders, saying she had approved the passage of the prison cadet bus which had ended up being encircled in flames.

"It's hard to say it, but the one responsible for the Carmel fire disaster is Ahuva Tomer, not Eli Yishai," senior officials in Yishai's Shas were quoted as saying.

At a memorial service for the fire victims this month, Rozen had called for Yishai to leave the ceremony, saying that he would depart if Yishai did not.

Many more angry relatives of the Carmel fire victims expressed their disappointment with Yishai during the ceremony, shouting that he was to blame for the fire and calling upon him to leave.

Yishai consequently left the ceremony, accompanied by Sephardi Chief Rabbi Shlomo Amar.

Israel Police officials condemned the comments by Yishai's associates, saying they regret the "political and cynical" use of the Carmel fire victims' memory.

Police officials also said that those who say Tomer was responsible for the bus disaster do not know the facts. "It's a shame that those people are hurting the memory of Tomer in an effort to contend against Danny Rosen, her partner."