Ethiopian Jew Suspected of Murdering Wife, Whose Sister Was Killed by Her Husband

Women's sister was killed by her husband five years ago; neither woman had complained to authorities about domestic violence.

Magen David Adom spokesperson

The body of Salmalek Tasara, 35, was found in her Netanya apartment Sunday morning, with stab wounds to the torso.

Tasara’s 17-year-old daughter from a previous marriage called police to the home.

The couple was apparently in the process of divorcing, and were separated. Tasara’s husband, the primary suspect in what is thought to be a murder, was arrested several hours later at his mother’s home in Petah Tikva, where he was hiding.

According to police, the husband came to their home, stabbed Tasara several times in the chest and left.

Police said he had been in prison for 10 months in 2011 after he was convicted of using violence against his previous wife.

And in November 2010 Tasara’s sister, Malkam Tasara, 26, was murdered by her partner in Rishon Letzion.

“We see a great apprehension among members of the Ethiopian community about complaining or coming to shelters for victims of domestic abuse,” said a welfare official who is familiar with the case.

But five years ago, before the births of their two children and the couple’s subsequent separation, Tasara filed a complaint against her husband, saying he threatened and physically abused her.

There are many similarities between the two sisters’ murders. Family members say that both husbands were jealous by nature and beat their wives, and in both cases family members were witnesses to the murder. In addition to Tasara’s older daughter from a previous marriage, the two children she had with her second husband, her presumed murderer, were also in the apartment at the time of the stabbing.

“Just two weeks ago we spoke, and she told me he often came home drunk. He was very jealous of her and he thought she was cheating on her all the time even though that wasn’t true,” a female relative of Tasara said. “He beat her and she wanted to divorce him, but she was afraid to raise their two little children alone.”

According to a female friend of the family, the suspect kept Tasara away from her family. “He didn’t let her go to family events and insisted that she stay at home or go to work, and nothing else apart from that,” the family friend said.

A neighbor in the family’s apartment building said, “The whole neighborhood heard the screams this morning. I knew the husband to be a nice man, I never imagined that something like this could happen.”