Israeli Suspected of Murdering Wife 'Checked Into Psychiatric Hospital' Following Killing

Suspect arrested 10 days after wife’s body was found near their home in Tel Aviv suburb; his brother has also been detained.

Police attending a crime scene in Israel (illustrative).
David Bachar

A Petah Tikva man who is suspected of murdering his wife reportedly checked into a psychiatric hospital immediately following her death, although his lawyer said he had been referred to the hospital by the police.

About two weeks ago, police received a call that the lifeless body of a woman – later identified as Paz Ben-Yosef, 35 – was lying in the sidewalk under the window of her home. Police initially suspected she had committed suicide, but an autopsy revealed she had died some time prior to the discovery of her body and she had not been killed in a fall.

Findings at the scene also included indications that she had been killed. This prompted the police to arrest her 42-year-old husband this week, 10 days after the incident, on suspicion that he and his brother had dragged the body onto the sidewalk, in an apparent effort to make it look like a suicide.

The police are still investigating potential motives for the suspected murder.

The deceased woman’s husband is known to the authorities for his psychiatric problems and had been hospitalized on several occasions for psychiatric problems. His lawyer, Gil Gabbay, of the Public Defender’s Office, said the police referred the man to a psychiatric hospital following his wife’s death.

The suspect’s brother, 38, was also arrested last week. His lawyer, Izhar Konforty, also from the Public Defender’s Office, said his client denies any involvement.

In an unrelated case, the decapitated body of a 33-year-old woman was found in her Tiberias apartment last Wednesday. Police arrested her ex-husband, 34, who had been walking around on the street holding the woman’s severed head.

The Petah Tikva incident is the fourth case this year of a woman allegedly killed by a family member. There were 119 such cases around Israel between 2011 and 2016.