JERUSALEM (Apr. 8)
The body of a soldier brutally murdered near Tel Aviv yesterday was located today by Israeli authorities.
Sgt. Akiva She’ Altiel, 21, of Rosh Ha’ayin, was found today in a wadi near a road on the western slopes of the Judaean mountains. The victim’s hands were cuffed, his face and head bruised and a rope tightened around his neck. The body was reportedly spotted by local Arab villagers yesterday and reported to authorities today.
Authorities said the sergeant apparently left his army base, east of Ben Gurion Airport, and was hitchhiking when the driver of an unidentified vehicle stopped and offered him a ride. The soldier was unarmed, which is permitted for military personnel in Israel proper.
Authorities said it appeared that the vehicle immediately left the road and the occupants attacked the sergeant, beating his face and head with a sharp object, then tied a rope around his neck, strangling him. Security forces immediately started a wide search in nearby villages for clues that might lead them to the murderers.