Man Who Ran Over 9-year-old on Yom Kippur Convicted of Manslaughter

Assad Shibli ran over and killed Tal Zino with an all-terrain vehicle in Kfar Tavor on Yom Kippur 2007.

The Nazareth district court on Wednesday convicted Assad Shibli of manslaughter for running over and killing nine year old Tal Zino with an all terrain vehicle in 2007.

Mohammed shibli, a relative of the defendant who was also in the vehicle at the time, was found guilty of having fled the scene of an accident.

He was cleared of manslaughter because it could not be confirmed that he was aware of Assad Shibli's intention to enter Kfar Tavor, where the incident took place on Yom Kippur.

The indictment alleged that the defendants drove into the town intentionally, knowing the Israeli custom for children to roam the roads freely on Yom Kippur as traffic comes to a halt.

Shibli's father Nassim said that he would appeal the verdict to the supreme court claiming the judge's decision was racist.

Judge Yitzhak Cohen said he could not trust the testimony of the two accused, who are both residents of the Bedouin town of Shibli, near Kfar Tavor.

"They understood the meaning of Yom Kippur and saw that there were many people on the road, including children. The driver ignored the amount of people, drove at high speed, on two wheels, while making a lot of noise, increased the speed and entered toward a crowd that tried to escape."

Zino's mother Chaya said after the verdict that the tragedy would remain with the family forever.

"It was Yom Kippur, a holy day, how is it possible to come and just kill my daughter?" she said, adding that she was disappointed that Mohammed Shibli was acquitted of the more serious charge of manslaughter.

"This was murder. It was a terrorist attack, to go wild next to a synagogue, when everybody is dressed in white...[when] there are no cars on the street," she said.