4 More Children Report Molestation

Four more sexual abuse stories were reported yesterday, two in Jerusalem and two in the north.

In the capital, a 5-year-old boy told police a man had accosted him and bit him in the genitals. Police arrested a suspect but released him after they were certain he was not the attacker.

The child told police that a man came up to him yesterday afternoon as he was standing in front of his apartment building in the capital's Kiryat Moshe neighborhood. The child said the man pulled down his pants, bit him and ran away. The child was taken to Hadassah University Hospital, Ein Karem, where his injuries were classified as slight.

Police arrested a 15-year-old boy who matched the child's description. But after the arrest, they received another report of an attack in the same neighborhood; in the second case the victim was unharmed.

The teen maintained his innocence during several hours of interrogation. After police confirmed his alibi and determined that other details the child had reported did not fit him, the teen was released. Police said they were working as quickly as possible to locate the perpetrator.

Meanwhile,in the one of the Haifa Bay suburbs, police are investigating suspicions that a 10-year-old girl had had sexual relations with five minor boys. Although the relations were supposedly consensual, they still constitute a crime because of the girl's age. However, because of the age of most of the boys involved, 12 to 14, they will not be charged. One of the suspects is 15, and is expected to be charged.

'Consensual relations'

The incident took place a few days ago after a neighbor saw a naked girl near the shelter at her apartment building and called the police. Local police chief, Commander Jamal Hakhrush, said the girl told the Social Affairs Ministry worker who questioned her that the relations were consensual. The younger boys were also questioned by a ministry worker; the 15-year-old was questioned by police.

Also in the Haifa Bay area, a 39-year-old man was arrested on suspicion of committing indecent acts on his girlfriend's 9-year-old daughter. Hakhrush said the girl told about what had happened at school, and social services filed a complaint with the police. The man denies the charges.

The Ministerial Committee on Legislation voted yesterday in favor of a bill provided state-funded psychological treatment to child victims of sexual assault, a program now in its pilot stage. However, Finance Minister Yuval Steinitz (Likud) yesterday appealed the vote, saying the bill would cost too much to implement.