Accomplice to terrorist murder of 19-year-old Israeli policewoman gets life plus 32 years

“I refused and told them that I wanted to stay alive and kill Jews,” he said when asked why he didn’t actively participate in the attack.

By Lauren Marcus, World Israel News

A Palestinian man who served as a critical accomplice to the terrorists who carried out the murder of a Border Police officer in 2016 was sentenced to life in prison, plus 32 years, by a military court on Sunday.

Bilal Abu Zeid was convicted of supplying the weapons used in the attack as well as driving the terrorists to Jerusalem, knowing they were attempting to kill Israeli security personnel and civilians.

Abu Zeid transported a squad of three men from PA-controlled cities in northern Judea and Samaria, identified as Ahmed Abou Al-Roub, Mohammed Kameel and Ahmad Rajeh Ismail Zakarneh, to the Old City of Jerusalem armed with machine guns, knives, and homemade pipe bombs on their person.

When 19-year-old policewoman Corporal Hadar Cohen spotted one of the men acting suspiciously at Jerusalem’s Damascus Gate, she asked to see his identification card. The man then shot her repeatedly at point blank range.

Cohen managed to return fire and struck several of the men, thus helping to prevent a larger attack, but later died of a gunshot wound to the head. She had been recruited to the Border Police just two months earlier and was still in her training period when the attack occurred.

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All three terrorists were shot and killed by security forces at the scene.

During Abu Zeid’s trial, he was asked by military prosecutors why he did not join the three men in carrying out the actual attack, although they had asked him to participate in the shooting spree with them.

“I refused and told them that I wanted to stay alive and kill Jews,” he replied, according to Hebrew-language media reports.

In addition to his prison sentence, Abu Zeid was ordered by the court to pay 1.5 million shekels ($430,000) to Cohen’s family and 250,000 shekels ($72,000) to another police officer who was wounded in the attack.

The IDF demolished Abu Zeid’s family home in July 2016.