The Small Claims Court in Jerusalem ordered on Thursday two Hebron policemen to pay NIS 1,000 (about USD 220) in compensation to right-wing activist Itamar Ben-Gvir for pointing their guns at his dog.
Ben-Gvir filed a lawsuit in October 2005 against the two policemen whom he accused of falsely arresting him and pointing a loaded gun at his dog.
The judge accepted the policemen's claim that the dog had scared them but ruled that Ben-Gvir was falsely remanded for interrogation.
Right-wing activist Itamar Ben-Gvir and his dog Chompy (Photo: Gil Yochanan)
Ben-Gvir told the court that while he was walking his dog at the Givat Haavot neighborhood in Hebron on October 6, he encountered a local policeman. Chompy the dog started barking at the officer, and the man in response drew his gun at the canine and said, "if the dog doesn't stop barking, I'll shoot him and you."
Ben-Gvir claims he had asked the policeman to provide him with his personal details, but the officer refused to do so and left the scene. Some twenty minutes later, the lawsuit states, five policemen arrived at the extreme rightist's house and arrested him on suspicion he had threatened the officer, saying that "if someone hurts Chompy, I'll hurt you," and that he was walking his dog without a muzzle.
The judge said that although a dog's bark can be harmful, policemen have a more responsibilities than other citizens and "should not be scared of every dog's bark."
Dog summoned to court
The ruling read that Ben-Gvir should not be compensated by the policeman for threatening to shoot his dog, arguing that the policeman's fear instigated his actions.
The judge however said that remanding Ben-Gvir for interrogation at midnight was unnecessary, arguing he could have been called in in the morning.
The case drew media attention when the judge summoned Ben-Gvir's dog to the courtroom after receiving contradictory descriptions of his size.
"It is important that the court ruled that my arrest was unnecessary. The police are is harassing and looking for me. More so the ruling read that there Chompy doesn't need a muzzle. I think I deserve higher compensation. I intend on filing an appeal. With the money I won I will spoil Chompy and buy him special snacks for dogs," Ben-Gvir said upon reading the ruling.
Abiram Zino contributed to this report