Border cop indicted for assaulting bystander during Mea Shearim clashes

A Border Police officer was indicted on Wednesday for an April assault on a man in Jerusalem’s ultra-Orthodox neighborhood of Mea Shearim.

The April 4 incident occurred during widespread clashes in the hardline neighborhood over the enforcement of social distancing rules and other restrictions imposed to fight the spread of the coronavirus.

CCTV footage showed Dov Frankel pushed to the ground by Meron Elia in an apparently unprovoked attack, before the police officer continued past him along with other troops.

Frankel was lightly injured with bruises and scrapes as a result of the assault.

The Justice Ministry’s Police Internal Investigations Department opened an investigation into the incident and on Wednesday filed charges at the Jerusalem Magistrate’s Court.

According to the indictment, the officer was commanding forces operating in the ultra-Orthodox neighborhood and had been dealing with rioting over lockdown regulations.

The officer was leaving the area when he came across Frankel, who told the Haaretz daily that he had been helping his parents as his father was very sick.

The PIID noted that Frankel encountered the group of officers, one of whom told him to go home, and he had agreed.

At this point, another officer “without any justification pushed him with his arms outstretched toward his upper body, and threw him onto the road for a distance of several meters,” the indictment read.

“It is unfortunate that the policeman acted as he did, but consolation can be found in the fact that it was decided to bring him to justice, as it should have been,” Frankel told the Haaretz daily.

“The evidence showed that the officer, who was in charge of the force, ran towards a civilian walking on the street, who at the time did not constitute any disturbance to the public or the police, and in an arbitrary act pushed him hard with both hands,” said Liat Union, an attorney for the PIID.

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