A man who killed his Jewish neighbour in Paris while shouting about Allah is probably not criminally responsible for his actions because he had smoked marijuana beforehand, a French judge ruled.
The preliminary ruling in the trial of Kobili Traore for the 2017 murder of Sarah Halimi came on Friday from a judge of inquiry — a magistrate that in the French justice system is tasked with deciding whether indicted defendants should in fact stand trial.
Francis Kalifat, the president of the CRIF umbrella group of French Jewish communities – the country’s EJC affiliate – called the ruling “unsurprising but hardly justifiable.” He said his group and others will appeal in hopes of bringing Traore to trial.
Traore could be hospitalised for treatment of his psychotic lapses or made to attend a drug rehabilitation program, or he could be released.
Khalifat’s op-ed published on the CRIF website follows a series of protests over perceived delays in Traore’s trial and the efforts, including by judges, that CRIF and others have condemned as attempts to prevent a murder trial.
Traore pummeled Halimi, a physician and kindergarten teacher, for an hour as police stood outside the woman’s door, according to reports. He shouted about Allah and called her a “demon” before throwing her to her death. Traore had called Halimi’s daughter “dirty Jewess” two years before killing the mother, the daughter has said.