‘I accidentally hit the gas’ – Driver who ran over anti-judicial reform protesters arrested

Driver arrested after hitting demonstrators illegally blocking Ayalon Highway; police say they believe he did not strike the protesters deliberately.

By World Israel News Staff

A man who drove his vehicle into a crowd of demonstrators who were illegally blocking Ayalon Highway on Saturday evening was arrested shortly after the incident, telling police that he had “accidentally hit the gas” and did not intentionally hit the group.

In a video circulating on social media, the man can be seen getting out of his stopped vehicle as anti-judicial reform protesters stop traffic on the busy thoroughfare.

After arguing with the crowd for several minutes, the man re-enters the vehicle and plows through the group, hitting several people.

None of the demonstrators who were struck suffered serious injuries, though one woman was taken to the hospital.

The man immediately stopped his vehicle after the collision and was surrounded by angry protesters.

Police arrested the man a short time later and held him for questioning overnight.

According to Hebrew-language media reports, the man was released on Sunday morning. He had originally been in the passenger seat and decided to switch places with his son, who only recently began driving and was nervous about navigating the situation, he told authorities.

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Upon returning to the car and getting in the driver’s seat, the man unintentionally stepped on the gas, he said.

Police reportedly believed his version of events and are not planning to file criminal charges against the man.

Demonstrators insisted that the man had hit the demonstrators on purpose.

“All of the cars were stopped and then one of them accelerated in order to force its way through,” Rani, a protester, told Haaretz.

Several left-wing ministers ignored the police’s findings and promoted the narrative that the driver had deliberately struck the demonstrators.

Yesh Atid MK Yasmin Friedman implied that the driver was a Likud voter in a tweet, writing that ““when a minister instructs her driver to run over [security guards], it’s no wonder her voters do it too. A great personal example.”