An Israeli man stabbed his 10-month-old daughterto death and severely wounded his wife and their 3-year-old daughter at the family’s home in the city of Hod Hasharon Saturday.
The 33-year-old man, who police say was lightly wounded while attempting suicide, was apprehended and taken to hospital. He admitted to attacking his family. Officials say the man did not have a criminal record, and that the family was being treated by social services.
Police are trying to establish a motive.
The family lives in a housing unit next door to the woman’s parents' house, who were not at home at the time of the incident. According to an initial police investigation, the woman’s sister, who also lives nearby, came into the family’s home after hearing screams and saw her wounded sister trying to escape her spouse.
The sister called emergency services, who found the stabbed woman in the backyard of her parents’ house, her 3-year-old daughter in their living room and the baby in the family’s housing unit. They were treated at the scene and rushed to hospitals in Kfar Saba and Petah Tikva, where the 10-month-old succumbed to her injuries. The woman went through surgery, and doctors say her life remains at risk.
Neighbors and family members said they hadn’t heard of any violent incidents involving the suspect or seen any warning signs. “They were a warm, loving family,” one relative said. “Nothing prepared us for this.”
Hod Hasharon Mayor Amir Kohavi vowed that the municipality and social services would “do anything to help the family in this difficult time,” together with municipal social services. He added the violent attack “came as a shock to everyone.”
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The Israel Women’s Network Executive Director Michal Gera Margaliot said “This isn’t the first time a man has committed such an extreme act, but the treatment options available remain lacking. Tens of thousands of women and children are threatened on a daily basis, but women’s lives and security aren’t a priority for the state.”
She called on politicians to enact “a clear, uncompromising policy to change the situation… Only by doing so could we save women and girls from the next murder.”
The father’s attorney, public defender Ran Alon, said the man was upset and crying often, and seemed confused and to be in a difficult emotional state. “He hasn’t processed what happened,” said Alon.
Ido Efrati contributed to this report.