College Instructor Detained by California Police in Relation to Jewish Demonstrator’s Death

by Lucas Garcia
Manslaughter charges in Israel-Hamas protest case.

On Thursday, a college instructor was taken into custody by California authorities, linked to the fatality of a Jewish individual who was protesting during the recent demonstrations in Southern California, sparked by the conflict between Israel and Hamas.

Loay Abdelfattah Alnaji, aged 50, faces potential charges of involuntary manslaughter, as announced by the Ventura County Sheriff’s Office. This charge pertains to the accidental killing of another individual. The decision to formally charge him rests with the district attorney, based on the evidence presented.

Attempts to reach Alnaji for comment were unsuccessful. A call to his publicly listed mobile number was declined by an unidentified individual, and his home number in Moorpark, located north of Los Angeles, did not have voicemail set up.

Paul Kessler, 69, succumbed to his injuries at a hospital on November 6, following an altercation on November 5 with a demonstrator supporting Palestine in Thousand Oaks, a suburb to the northwest of Los Angeles.


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Sheriff Jim Fryhoff disclosed that the investigation revealed Kessler had fallen backward, hitting his head on the ground. The Palestinian-supporting demonstrator remained at the scene, notifying authorities via 911.

Dr. Christopher Young, the County Medical Examiner, stated that the autopsy indicated Kessler’s death resulted from head injuries consistent with a fall. He also noted possible signs of facial trauma, but the exact cause of Kessler’s fall remains uncertain.

A makeshift memorial with flowers and candles was erected at the site of the confrontation in Thousand Oaks. Kessler was reported to have been engaged in a “physical altercation” during the demonstrations, which ultimately led to his fatal head injury.

The homicide ruling for Kessler’s death indicated it resulted from another’s actions. However, this alone wasn’t sufficient for an immediate arrest due to the lack of conclusive evidence.

Authorities have not specified the reasons for Alnaji’s arrest in the recent update. They are actively seeking additional video evidence, with only a brief clip showing Kessler on the ground currently available. No footage of the actual confrontation has been released.

Earlier, a 50-year-old man from Moorpark was briefly detained and his residence searched, but he was subsequently released, as per Sheriff Fryhoff’s statement.

The Sheriff’s Office acknowledged the challenges in the case, citing conflicting witness accounts from both sides, which complicates establishing a case beyond reasonable doubt.

The incident occurred at a gathering intended to be a peaceful demonstration in support of Palestinians, attended by around 75 people, including a group of pro-Israel protesters. No signs of imminent violence were reported shortly before the incident.

Amidst increasing tensions in the U.S. related to the ongoing Israel-Hamas conflict, demonstrations have been escalating.

The Jewish Federation of Greater Los Angeles expressed appreciation for the investigative efforts, emphasizing that violence against the Jewish community is intolerable.

This report was filed from San Diego by Watson.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about Jewish Demonstrator Death

Who was arrested in connection with the death of a Jewish demonstrator in California?

Loay Abdelfattah Alnaji, a 50-year-old college professor, was arrested in relation to the death of Paul Kessler, a Jewish protester, during demonstrations in Southern California related to the Israel-Hamas conflict.

What charges is Loay Abdelfattah Alnaji facing?

Alnaji is potentially facing charges of involuntary manslaughter, which involves the unintentional killing of another person. The decision to formally charge him is pending, based on the evidence evaluated by the district attorney.

How did Paul Kessler, the Jewish demonstrator, die?

Paul Kessler, aged 69, died from head injuries consistent with a fall, as determined by an autopsy. He fell backward and struck his head on the ground during a confrontation with a pro-Palestinian demonstrator in Thousand Oaks, California.

What has the Ventura County Sheriff’s Office stated about the case?

The Ventura County Sheriff’s Office has stated that they are still gathering evidence, including video footage of the incident. They have also noted the challenges in the case due to conflicting witness accounts, which impacts the credibility of the evidence.

What was the nature of the demonstrations in Southern California?

The demonstrations in Southern California were related to the ongoing conflict between Israel and Hamas. They included both pro-Israel and pro-Palestinian protesters and were initially intended to be peaceful gatherings.

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JournoGal November 17, 2023 - 2:16 am

Paul Kessler, 69, died in altercation. Ventura County Sheriff seekin evidence. demos escalatin. #IsraelHamas

NewsHound47 November 17, 2023 - 12:59 pm

cali prof Loay Abdelfattah Alnaji in custody, chargd w involuntary manslaughtr. investigation ongoin. tragic.

Reader123 November 17, 2023 - 5:25 pm

college prof arrested in connection wth death of jewish protestr. sad incident, need justice


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