The 19-year-old son of an Israeli consulate official was denied diplomatic immunity following his arrest over the weekend for allegedly running over a police officer with his motorcycle, the U.S. State Department told HuffPost.
Avraham Gil was arrested Saturday and charged with aggravated battery against a police officer and resisting arrest after police in Sunny Isles Beach, Florida, attempted to pull him over, according to a complaint obtained by HuffPost.
Gil’s attorney, David Seltzer, told HuffPost in a statement that the teen is innocent and that video evidence supports that he was “simply driving and had no intention to hit the police officer.”
Seltzer previously argued in a county court that Gil cannot face criminal charges at all because he is entitled to “consular immunity,” the Miami New Times reported.
The judge released Gil from jail, though questions remained “in legal circles” about whether he is entitled to immunity, according to reports by ABC affiliate WPLG-TV in South Florida.
In a statement to HuffPost on Thursday, the State Department confirmed that Gil is a dependent of a consular officer but is “not entitled to civil or criminal immunity.”
The Sunny Isles Police Department posted a photo of Avraham Gil's motorcycle in the roadway.
According to the complaint against Gil, an officer who had pulled over another vehicle during a traffic stop said he saw the motorcycle coming toward him, passing between cars, and yelled for the rider to stop.
The officer said Gil “disregarded” his commands, continued riding his motorcycle toward him and then “intentionally ran him over,” according to the complaint.
The officer reported that he then grabbed Gil with both his hands and “redirected him towards the ground to stop him,” the complaint stated.
According to the document, the officer “suffered incapacitating injuries to his left leg” and was taken to a hospital for treatment.
The Sunny Isles Beach Police Department included a photo of the officer's leg in its report on the incident with Avraham Gil.
Seltzer also said that police failed to follow the “approved and accepted procedures” to clarify whether Gil had diplomatic immunity.
Seltzer confirmed to HuffPost that Gil’s father is Eli Gil, who is consul for administration at Israel’s consulate in Miami.
According to the State Department, unless a “bilateral agreement” is in effect, family members of consular officers “enjoy no personal inviolability and no jurisdictional immunity of any kind.”
Gil is scheduled to appear in court for his arraignment on Feb. 28.