Israeli claims attack by U.S. guard, silenced

Tami Ben Haim says a Secret Service security man attacked her in Jerusalem but was quickly removed from the country before his investigation was completed; intends to file a lawsuit against the state to demand justice
An Israeli woman claimed she had been attacked by a U.S. security guard of the Secret Service in Jerusalem, but he was removed from the country before an investigation could be completed.
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Tami Ben Haim
Tami Ben Haim
Tami Ben Haim
"This completely ruined my life to this day. I am broken and unable to recover," Tami Ben Haim, the granddaughter of the late founder of the Shas Party Ovadia Yosef said. "My body has healed from the injuries, but my soul has not. Before the attack, I was at the peak of my youth and dreamed of starting a family. Today, I don't work, don't go out with friends, don't go on dates. I just undergo psychiatric treatments. I want justice to be served, and for someone to be held accountable for what one of President Biden's security guards did to me," she said.
The alleged attack of the 30-year-old photographer and graphic designer took place during the visit to Israel of U.S. President Joe Biden last year.
According to Ben Haim, she was at the wrong place at the wrong time last July 12, 2022. As she made her way home after midnight, through the alleys of Jerusalem's Nachlaot neighborhood, not far from the Mahane Yehuda market, she encountered two American secret service agents who were part of the preliminary team preparing Biden's visit due to start two days later.
One of the men, Patrick William, was drunk and attacked her, hitting her in the chest, grabbing her shoulders, and even ripping off her earring. The assault continued until the second security guard who was behind him got ahold of him and pulled him away.
"I screamed 'help' but no one heard me," Ben Haim recalled the terrible night. "I was in complete despair. I thought I was meeting my end. I noticed that the man who had ruthlessly attacked me had a gun. If his friend hadn't stopped him, he would have killed me, 100 percent."
Couples who had passed by and saw her in distress advised her to call the police. Officers then arrived at the scene, and Ben Haim managed to lead them to the two Americans. The officers arrested them and took them to the nearest police station. On that same night, Ben Haim filed a complaint with the police.
Later on, she went to a doctor and was diagnosed as suffering from bruises all over her body. In the days following, she spent her time in bed, appalled that no one from the U.S. embassy, the Israeli police, or the Foreign Ministry bothered to call her, to ask how she was doing, apologize, or offer help.
Tami's attorney, Nir Yaslovitzh, who looked into the matter discovered that two hours after he was brought to the police station, a phone call arrived from a senior diplomatic official to the Israeli police with an instruction to immediately release William. According to the attorney, the American consulate arrived in the morning and took him away. Later that morning, he was put on the first flight to the U.S. and simply fled the country. CNN reported that William was suspended from his post until the investigation was completed, but it was unclear if any disciplinary action was taken against him.
Yaslovitzh makes harsh accusations regarding the cover-up of the investigation after the intervention of senior officials, which he claims was done to avoid a scandal that would overshadow Biden's visit to Israel. His investigation revealed that the police simply closed the case due to a lack of evidence, without informing Ben Haim.
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Nir Yaslovitzh
Nir Yaslovitzh
Nir Yaslovitzh
The attorney then sent a letter to the Foreign Minister and the Minister of National Security demanding that the investigation be revisited. He requested a probe into why the security guard was released and allowed to flee the country.
He was also preparing to file a lawsuit against the state. "Tami is fighting like a lioness for her justice. She asked me to serve justice to those who hurt her," he said."Political players preferred a photo-op with Biden and for the visit to pass undisturbed, at the cost of severe harm to an innocent citizen who did nothing."
"Upon receiving the report, officers rushed to the scene and transferred the suspect to an investigation that ended with his release on bail," the police said in a statement. "After carrying out the necessary actions in the case and considering the evidence available, the investigating officer decided that there was no need to continue his probe and the case was closed accordingly. Any other allegation should be dismissed or referred to relevant authorities," the police said.
U.S. Secret Service spokesman Steve Kopek said that every member of the U.S. Secret Service stands by the highest professional and ethical standards and that this matter is no exception.
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