A man charged with trying to murder his ex-wife in a particularly vicious fashion told the court on Thursday that he hadn’t meant to kill her, but lost control.
“I lost it,” Aviad Moshe said in his first day testifying in one of Israel’s most notorious domestic violence cases of the past year. “I can’t explain it, I don’t know what came over me, I don’t know what impulse hit me.”
Moshe is accused of stabbing his ex-wife, Shira Iskov, 20 times and beating her with a rolling pin in front of their son. Then, when she was lying on the floor bleeding, he started strangling her while whispering “die already,” the indictment said.
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In addition, he “cursed and humiliated her,” blocked the door with his body so she couldn’t escape and ignored pleas to stop from Iskov, their son, her parents and the neighbors.
The three Be’er Sheva District Court judges pressed him repeatedly to describe the moments of the attack, but he was evasive, merely reiterating that he had lost control. When his attorney, Alon Davidov, asked whether he intended to kill her, he responded, “Heaven forbid.”
“I never raised a hand against her until the moment of this incident ... except to defend myself against her,” he added.
To that, Judge Yael Raz-Levi responded drily, “Saying you never raised a hand against her isn’t appropriate here. ... What you did happened, and the consequences were quite severe.”
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“I wish I could explain this to myself, to understand what happened there,” Moshe replied. “Something pushed me. I couldn’t control my emotions, and I can’t understand how this happened.”
Later, he insisted, “I am not a violent person.”
Judge Gilat Shalev said she felt like he was “talking in slogans a bit. You aren’t explaining what went through your head. It’s all vague.”
Moshe opened his testimony by apologizing for the attack. “I’m voicing my apology here with a broken heart ... to Shira, to her family of course, and to my family,” he said.
He later reiterated his claim that she had provoked him, insulted him and blamed him and his family for the miscarriage she had shortly before the attack.
“The day before the incident, I couldn’t listen to her anymore,” he said. “I simply blocked her on WhatsApp. I couldn’t handle all that spite, what she was doing to me.”
On the day of the attack, he said, Iskov “wished my sisters would die” and spat in his face.