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Professor to stand trial in death of pro-Israel protester

The anti-Israel professor charged with the death of a Jewish dad in a confrontation throughout a protest over the Israel-Hamas struggle final yr may have to stand trial, a choose determined Wednesday.

Following a two-day preliminary listening to, Superior Court Judge Ryan Wright discovered there was sufficient proof to strive Loay Abdelfattah Alnaji, according to the Ventura County District Attorney’s Office.

Alnaji, 51, is accused of putting Paul Kessler with a megaphone throughout an anti-Israel demonstration in Thousand Oaks, a Los Angeles suburb, on Nov. 5 after the 2 received right into a heated confrontation.

Kessler, a 69-year-old Jewish dad who was counter-protesting, fell backward and hit his head on the pavement. He died the subsequent day at a hospital.

Paul Kessler
Loay Abdelfattah Alnaji faces manslaughter prices in the death of Paul Kessler (above) throughout a November protest. AP

Alnaji, a pc science professor at Moorpark College, was charged with two felonies: involuntary manslaughter and battery inflicting severe bodily damage, with particular allegations of personally inflicting nice bodily hurt damage on every depend, the DA’s workplace mentioned.

Alnaji posted $50,000 bail, which had been lower in half in November after authorities introduced he may nonetheless face hate crime prices for the incident.

The professor had espoused pro-Palestinian views on his Facebook and different social media accounts, all of which have been taken down days after Kessler’s death.

Loay Abdelfattah Alnaji, a pc science professor and pro-Palestine advocate, was charged with two felonies.

The DA’s workplace mentioned it’s persevering with to examine Alnaji’s social media pages, in addition to different paperwork belonging to him.

“This evaluation is ongoing and comprehensive, but to date, it has not revealed evidence to support a hate crime,” the DA’s workplace mentioned.

“While antisemitic hate speech was heard at the November 5, 2023, rally, there is no evidence those words were said by Alnaji.”

paul kessler advocates
Alnaji may have to stand trial following Kessler’s death. JUAN CARLO/THE STAR / USA TODAY NETWORK

Lawyers for Alnaji, who holds each Jordanian and US passports, have beforehand claimed that he and Kessler have been a number of ft away from one another when he fell over onto the pavement.

“While he may have been pushed or hit by a megaphone, that’s not what caused his fall,” Alnaji’s lawyer Ron Bamieh mentioned of Kessler in November. “When he fell, my client was 6 to 8 feet away from him, and that will be the evidence that we present when we finally get this thing in front of a judge and jury.”

If Alnaji is discovered responsible on all prices, he may obtain over 4 years in jail.

The two felony counts would depend as two strikes in opposition to Alnaji beneath California’s three-strikes regulation.

If an individual is convicted of “three strikes” beneath state regulation, they land a compulsory minimal sentence of 25 years to life behind bars.

With Post wires.

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