Police say officer ousted for leaving post ahead of deadly Jerusalem stabbing attack

Authorities say Border Police officer abandoned his position shortly before Sgt. Rose Lubin was killed by assailant

Family and friends attend the funeral of Sergeant Rose Ida Lubin at Mount Herzl Military Cemetery in Jerusalem on November 9, 2023 (Yonatan Sindel/Flash90)
Family and friends attend the funeral of Sergeant Rose Ida Lubin at Mount Herzl Military Cemetery in Jerusalem on November 9, 2023 (Yonatan Sindel/Flash90)

Police said Thursday that an officer had been ousted and transferred after an investigation found a “serious disciplinary and operational failure” in the circumstances surrounding the killing of Border Police officer Sgt. Rose Elisheva Lubin, 20.

According to the statement by police, the unnamed officer abandoned his post on Monday and “acted in complete opposition to orders and instructions” at the time of the stabbing attack, which occurred near the Herod’s Gate entrance to Jerusalem’s Old City.

According to the Walla news site, the officer had gone to buy food just before the attack, presumably leaving Lubin more exposed.

“Soldiers of the Border Police are on the forefront of the action and fighting. As a corps we are entrusted with the safety and wellbeing of the public, and in accordance with this great authority comes an equal responsibility,” Border Police chief Brik Yitzhak said in a statement.

“The Border Police is a corps that champions professionalism in accordance with a clear and distinct moral compass. In areas where we identify failure, we will not compromise and we will handle it with determination and courage while learning lessons with full transparency,” he added.

The assailant in the attack, a 16-year-old resident of East Jerusalem’s Issawiya neighborhood, was shot dead at the scene.

Sergeant Rose Lubin, speaking at an FIDF dinner in April 2023, in her hometown of Atlanta, Georgia (Courtesy)

Lubin moved to Israel from the United States in August 2021 and was drafted into the police as a so-called “lone soldier” in March 2022.

She was buried Thursday at Jerusalem’s Mount Herzl cemetery.

Lubin lived on Kibbutz Sa’ad, a community close to the border with Gaza. She was there during the Shabbat of October 7, when Hamas terrorists launched their  deadly assault on the communities and towns of southern Israel. As terrorists attempted to break into the kibbutz, Lubin picked up her weapon and joined the battle, said another Sa’ad member, speaking at the funeral.

The stabbing attack came at a time of soaring tensions in East Jerusalem and the West Bank, as Israel fights a fierce war against the Hamas terror group in the Gaza Strip following its October 7 massacres in southern Israel.

Lubin’s death brought the number of police officers killed since October 7 to 59.

Emanuel Fabian contributed to this report.

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