Father gets 2 life sentences in murder of his American-Israeli children


(JTA) — An Israeli man convicted of murdering his two American-Israeli children in 2014 was sentenced to back-to-back life sentences.

The sentence against Avi Levy was announced Sunday in Lod District Court. He was convicted last month despite his plea of temporary insanity, the Times of Israel reported. Levy refused to testify during his trial in the killings of Yishai, 12, and Naomi, 10.

The children lived in Columbus, Ohio, moving there with their mother, Karen, after their parents divorced and Karen was granted custody.

On July 11, 2014, the children came to Israel to visit Levy for the summer. That evening, Levy slashed their throats in his home on a moshav in central Israel in what apparently was intended as an act of revenge directed at their mother.

Before the couple divorced, Karen Levy had filed domestic violence complaints against her then-husband. She resided in a women’s shelter for victims of domestic violence during the divorce proceedings.

Levy turned himself in at a police station shortly after murdering the children. He reportedly confessed to the crime during the initial investigation, but then stopped cooperating.

The children, who had dual Israeli-American citizenship, were buried in Columbus.

Recommended from JTA