Palestinian, 14, given 14 months in jail for stabbing attempt
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Palestinian, 14, given 14 months in jail for stabbing attempt

Beersheba court says teen is mentally underdeveloped, has difficulty understanding consequences of his actions

Illustrative: A Palestinian teen on trial at the Jerusalem District Court November 19, 2015. (Yonatan Sindel/Flash90)
Illustrative: A Palestinian teen on trial at the Jerusalem District Court November 19, 2015. (Yonatan Sindel/Flash90)

The Beersheba District Court on Tuesday sentenced a Palestinian teenager to 14 months behind bars for attempting to carry out a terror attack against Israelis last year.

According to the indictment, the 14-year-old, who was not named, confessed to sneaking into Israel from the West Bank in December, armed with a kitchen knife, in search of Jewish victims. It said Israel Defense Forces soldiers patrolling the security fence intercepted him shortly after he entered Israeli territory.

During questioning, he told investigators he regretted the plan as soon as he sneaked through the fence, and had no intention of going through with an attack, the indictment said.

A court-ordered psychiatric examination determined the defendant was emotionally and intellectually underdeveloped and had difficulty understanding the consequences of his actions.

The 14-year-old was convicted of intent to cause bodily harm, possession of a knife and illegal entry into Israel. He was also sentenced to 12 months on probation.

The court recommended the teen undergo psychiatric upon his return to the West Bank.

A large number of the stabbing attacks against Israelis in the months-long uptick in violence since last fall have been perpetrated by young Palestinian teenagers and even some pre-teens. Minors have also been arrested for involvement in rock throwing and Molotov cocktail attacks, clashes with troops and low-level acts of violence.

Backed by Justice Minister Ayelet Shaked, the ministry last November introduced new regulations imposing a NIS 100,000 ($26,000) fine on parents of minors caught throwing rocks at civilians and security forces, and allowing the government to suspend social welfare payments to family members while minors convicted of terror- and violence-related offenses serve their sentences.

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