Mother of injured toddler faces assailants in court

Adva Bitton testifies against Palestinian rock-throwers who left her daughter, 3, in coma; wishes death penalty was applicable

Marissa Newman is The Times of Israel political correspondent.

Adele Bitton. (Courtesy)
Adele Bitton. (Courtesy)

Eleven months after a rock-throwing attack left her four-year-old daughter critically injured, Adva Bitton testified against the Palestinian assailants on Thursday in the Megiddo military court and pledged to take the case to international courts as well.

Adele, Adva’s daughter, has laid unconscious in the Loewenstein Hospital Rehabilitation Center in Ra’anana since the March 2013 attack. Bitton was driving near the settlement of Ariel when stones were hurled at her car, resulting in a collision between her car and a truck. Five suspects were arrested in connection to the attack and are presently standing trial.

In Thursday’s session, the defense attorney cross-examining Adva argued that it was the car accident, not the rock attack, that resulted in her daughter’s injury.

“It didn’t end [the way it did] because of my carelessness,” Adva responded, according to Ynet. “I knew I was under a stoning barrage. They sent police to get my preliminary testimony while I was still in the hospital. I didn’t come here with an agenda, I came to save my girls. I am a terror victim.”

Bitton told journalists following the proceedings she was sorry the terrorists would not receive a death sentence.

“It’s a day that brings all emotions to the surface; it all comes back to you,” she said. “Of course the trauma doesn’t ever go away for a minute. I hope the court charges the defendants to the fullest extent of the law and I would be very, very happy if they received a death sentence. Unfortunately it doesn’t exist.”

“I hope I don’t see them released in an exchange [prisoner release],” she added.

Since the attack, “our life is no life,” Bitton said. “Adele is still unconscious, it hurts me to see her confined to a wheelchair, not engaging with the world.”

“She doesn’t laugh, doesn’t eat, doesn’t do anything on her own,” she added.

Despite the hardship, Bitton is fighting to raise awareness about her story.

“It needs to stay in the public consciousness,” she said, according to Maariv. “I’m taking my difficult story and our difficult struggle to keep it there.”

Bitton also said she would take the case to international courts, including The Hague, so that her story would enter the “international consciousness.”

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