Dozens of relatives and friends attended the funeral in Ashkelon of 16-year-old Leah Drainkin on Thursday, whose body was found near Nitzanim beach in southern Israel the previous night in what police say may have been a case of rape-murder.
Drainkin's sister Sima, 17, delivered a eulogy, and denied police suspicions that the victim and her friends had been drinking before the murder.
"She didn't drink alcohol at all. We have learnt from this story that one must be cautious of strange older people," Sima Drainkin said.
"My sister was a good girl from a good home and never did anything bad to anybody."
Earlier Thursday, the Ashdod Magistrates Court extended the remand of the suspect Nikolai Dreishov, a 26-year-old resident of Ashkelon.
Ashkelon police arrested Dreishov on Wednesday in relation to the case and were led by him to the scene of the crime.
A preliminary investigation indicated that the girl and a few of her friends had met in an Ashkelon parking lot, where they listened to music while consuming alcohol.
The suspect then picked up the girls, returning most of them to their homes and took the victim to a wooded area near Nitzanim beach.
There the suspect allegedly attempted to rape Drainkin, then strangling her to death.
Emergency crews arrived at the scene on Wednesday and declared Drainkin dead, reporting signs of violence on her body.
Yohanan Danino, commander of the Police's Southern District, said on Thursday that "according to material in our possession at the moment, the suspect did in fact perpetrate the murder."
Commenting on the phenomenon of drinking among minors, Danino told Army Radio that "alcohol had a significant role in this serious case."
"Alcohol was part of this case and, regrettably, we have also seen it in many cases involving minors," Danino said, adding that "we all need to recognize the degree in which violent incidents are affected by the connection between partying with drugs and alcohol, and understand that there isn't a simple solution."
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