Girl, 8, Seriously Hurt in One of 4 Hit-and-runs

Five people, including an 8-year-old girl, were injured in four separate hit-and-run incidents over the weekend, police said.

Yesterday afternoon, the 8-year-old was struck by a car near the Lido Beach in Ashdod. The girl, from East Jerusalem, was crossing the road from a nearby park when she was hit. She ran to her parents and told them the car drove away, telling them its color and size, and then collapsed. She was taken to Sheba Medical Center, Tel Hashomer, and was hospitalized in serious condition.

Later yesterday, a 13-year-old boy was hit by a vehicle near the village of Hura in the Negev. He suffered serious head injuries and was taken to Soroka Medical Center, Be'er Sheva. Police said they knew the identity of the driver and expected to arrest him soon.

On Friday, three men from Holon were arrested in a hit-and-run incident after their vehicle allegedly struck a pedestrian near Beit Dagan. The victim, 32, from Rishon Letzion, was taken to Assaf Harofeh Hospital in Tzrifin in critical condition. An eyewitness noted down the license number of the car, which was stopped at a roadblock.

Police said the driver who witnessed the accident gave chase to the man who drove off, eventually overtaking the vehicle and blocking its path.

"He shouted to them, 'go back, you might have killed a man, you have to go back,'" said Superintendent Shai Mizrachi, of the Sharon district traffic police. However, the three men in the alleged hit-and-run car then drove around his car and attempted to flee. "We detained them at a roadblock we set up nearby," said Mizrachi. "They said they were terrified and panicked, which is why they left the area without assisting the pedestrian.

"They didn't appear to have been drinking more than is allowed, but as they left the injured man behind, we decided to put them house arrest for five days, while we investigate," Mizrachi said. He added that the driving license of the suspect driver was suspended for 60 days.

Also on Friday, a resident of Netanya was detained on suspicion of deliberately running over two men following a brawl next to a club at Moshav Batzra, police said. The driver, who was arrested nearby, said he drove into the men in self-defense, and that he was being attacked by their friends.

"When we got there, it turned out the driver was involved in a brawl that started at the club," said Superintendent David Bar Chen of the Sharon district traffic police. He said the driver, who was taken for questioning to the Kfar Sava police station, told police he hit the men unintentionally when backing up and that he had been attacked by friends of the two when in trying to leave the club.