Mother of Suspect in Rose Killing Testifies Against Son and His Partner

Another day of testimonies at the trial of Ronny Ron and Marie Pizem, suspected of killing 4-year-old Rose Pizem (Ron's granddaughter and Marie's daughter), saw an unusual eyewitness, as Ron's mother, Vivian Yaakov, testified against her son and his lover.

Yaakov told the court that shortly after Rose returned to live in Israel, her son transferred the girl to her care. Rose stayed at Yaakov's home for two to three months, during which, the dead girl's great-grandmother said, Ron took Rose to his own home only about five or six times. When asked about her relationship with Ron and Rose's mother, Pizem, Yaakov said: "Marie didn't call once. She didn't care at all. Ron would call once or twice a week." Yaakov also said Rose told her that Pizem didn't love her. "She said, 'Mommy plays with my two sisters but doesn't hug or kiss me,'" Yaakov told the court.

"The next day [referring to the day after Ron had last picked up Rose from Yaakov's home] Ronny called me and asked if I wanted the girl. I told him I want him to register her with a kindergarten, and then I'll take her. He asked me, do you want the girl or do you not want the girl. I told him I wanted the girl. He then told me, fine, bring the clothes."

Yaakov said she placed Rose's clothes in a bag on Ron's doorstep.

"A day or two later there was a circus in Netanya, and I wanted to take all my grandchildren. I called them, and Marie picked up. She started shouting, what do you want? What are you looking for? What were you doing here? There's nothing for you to look for, and then she started laughing hysterically. Then she cursed me, I cursed her back. I told her she was a lunatic and a freak and hung up."

A while later, Yaakov said she heard from friends that Rose had been put in an orphanage or an institution for children with down-syndrome. Pizem's mother called Yaakov from France, urging her to search for Rose. Yaakov approached Ron's landlady, who said she hadn't seen Rose in a while. Yaakov then turned to the Israel National Council for the Child and the welfare services, who in turn contacted police.

In the cross-examination, conducted by Pizem's lawyers Revital Sweid and Meirav Greenberg, Yaakov said she believed the relationship between Pizem and her son Ron was "something from Sodom and Gomorrah," and related an example of how Pizem allegedly abused Rose. "One day I see the girl standing there, peeing in her pants and crying. And Marie is telling her, go on, cry, cry. I told her, why are you telling her to cry? Can't you see what she is doing? Marie took the girl and dragged her to the bathroom, then to a room, and then they just suddenly left." She told the court Rose was a lovely girl, "she was learning to talk, learning to laugh.

"I feel great sorrow," Yaakov said. "Half my family is gone... I would have taken her, I would have raised her. I would have given her a pink room."