Be'er Sheva Man Charged With Murder of Neighbor, Who Allegedly Sexually Assaulted His Girlfriend

The 21–year–old is accused of stabbing his neighbor to death in August.

Scene of the murder in Be'er Sheva.
Almog Ben-Zikri

A Be’er Sheva resident was charged in court on Thursday with the premeditated murder of a neighbor in August.

According to the indictment filed in the Be’er Sheva District Court, Edouard Istakharov, 21, decided to kill his neighbor, Hamed Abu Taha, after his girlfriend told him Abu Taha had sexually assaulted her. On August 4, shortly after midnight, Istakharov waited outside Abu Taha’s house, armed with a knife. When Abu Taha arrived together with a friend, Istakharov confronted him and said he wanted to talk with him.

After some words were exchanged, Istakharov pulled out his knife, stabbed Abu Taha six times and then ran away. As he was running, he threw the knife into a nearby building.

In a statement accompanying their request that Istakharov be denied bail, police said that he had confessed to the murder, but had given several different, contradictory versions about what actually happened. Once, for instance, Istakharov said he had run into Abu Taha by chance, while another time, he said he had lain in wait for him.

Istakharov, who has a criminal record, also reenacted the murder and showed the police where he had thrown the knife, police said.