Three Wounded in Stabbing Attack in Central Israel

One victim seriously wounded, two victims lightly wounded in central Israeli city; suspect apprehended, police rule out accomplice.

The scene of the Ra'anana stabbing attack, shortly after the assailant was apprehended, December 19, 2015.
David Bachar

Three people were wounded, one seriously, in a stabbing attack in the central city of Ra’anana Saturday afternoon. A 20-year-old Palestinian man from the West Bank village of Tamun, near Jenin, was arrested as a suspect, after a brief chase. 

A spokesman for the Israel Defense Forces said the suspect, who did not have a permit to be in Israel, did not have a criminal record.

A 45-year-old man who was seriously injured in the attack was admitted to Kfar Sava’s Meir Hospital, which reported later that he was out of danger after two operation and was sedated and on a respirator.

The man’s wife, also 45, was treated in the hospital’s emergency room for minor injuries; she was expected to be admitted for observation discharged within several hours.

After stabbing the couple on or near Mordekhai Anielewicz Street, the assailant shoved a 67-year-old woman, who was treated for minor injuries at Meir Hospital. It was initially reported that she was stabbed when the perpetrator entered a building on Ramhal Street, shortly before he was apprehended. 

Contrary to some initial reports, the suspect was not shot before being apprehended.

The scene of the Ra'anana stabbing attack, December 19, 2015.
Magen David Adom emergency responders

Before the possibility was ruled out that the assailant had an accomplice who was still free, Ra’anana residents were encouraged to remain indoors and report any suspicious behavior. 

A woman and her son were also treated for shock. They reportedly pushed the assailant away when he tried to enter their apartment.

Guy Landau, a member of a Ra’anana security patrol who helped in the arrest, told Haaretz that there could have been additional casualties had the suspect not been apprehended quickly.

The terrorist was determined,” Landau said, adding that an effort was also made to keep civilians away from the suspect, in order to keep him from being assaulted.

The assailant in the Ra'anana stabbing attack being apprehended, December 19, 2015.
Courtesy United Hatzolah emergency responders

Eyewitnesses say the assailant tried to enter a synagogue but was prevented from doing so by worshippers who closed the doors.