Posted to Crime on

Suspect Went to Work After Gruesomely Killing Leibby

NY Post

Levi Aron (Inset), who reportedly has a history of mental illness, was arrested in connection with the investigation and led police to the mutilated body.

The dismembered body of a missing 9-year-old Hasidic boy was found at two locations in Brooklyn this morning and police arrested a suspect in the slaying.

Police made the gruesome discovery after raiding a Kensington home and arresting 35-year-old Levi Aron, who led them to parts of missing boy Leibby Kletsky’s body, stuffed in a red suitcase and hidden in a Dumpster outside an auto repair shop about two miles away, sources said.

Cops said Aron, who works at the Empire State Supply Co. hardware store on McDonald Avenue in Kensington, allegedly suffocated the boy before chopping him up. Police said they also found three knives in a butcher block inside Aron’s apartment.

A co-worker said Aron is divorced with no kids and acted completely normal at work yesterday. Aron worked as a stock clerk.

“I can’t believe this,” he said. “He was a strange guy, but he was here yesterday and he was fine after killing this little boy.”

“I am very shaken up anout this. Our phones have been ringing off the hook all morning. It’s very sad,” added a store manager.

It was a tragic end to the “angelic” boy, who disappeared Monday afternoon after getting lost while walking alone for the first time from his Borough Park day camp and following a man down a busy street, sparking a massive search.

“There are no words, just no words, to describe the sense of what happened here,” said State Assemblyman Dov Hikind (D-Brooklyn).

“Everybody’s shocked. You can see it on the faces of everyone you see here. We’ve had tragedies, people getting hit by cars, but nothing like this. This is a 9-year-old. Some stranger took this child and murdered him in the most brutal way possible.”

Police sources said Aron was tracked him down by tracing credit card transactions and video surveillance that showed the boy walking behind a bearded man on 45th Street and Dahill Road and possibly getting into a gold-colored car.

Police had observed Aron in a video recorded at 5:30 p.m. on Monday where he was seen entering a dentist’s office on 18th Avenue in Brooklyn.

Detectives located one of the dentists who worked there at his home in New Jersey last night and established that the suspect had been in the dentists’ office on Monday to pay a bill.

With the assistance of a receptionist and another dentist associated with the practice, detectives at 2 a.m. found records at the dentists’ office that established the suspect’s name and address. Aron was arrested about 40 minutes later.

Witnesses who saw police raid the Aron’s home at E. 2nd St. and Avenue C recognized the bearded man from surveillance videos.

A gold-colored car was also found at the residence, and investigators were seen going over the vehicle inch by inch.

Neighbors said Aron regularly attended the local shul.

“You could tell he was mentally unstable,” one neighbor said. “He would be calm but then would flare up. The whole family is strange.”

“I’m shocked,” said Rosso Safia, 23, owner of the Park Slope Auto Center. “There’s a little kid in the Dumpster we use. I have a little girl of my own. This is the worst thing that has ever happened to us.”

Safia said the store put it’s garbage out around 6:30 last night and that the dumpster is emptied some time between midnight and 3 a.m. He said police told him the dumpster was empty when the boy’s body was discovered.

“When they pick up the garbage they leave the plastic top open so anyone could have tossed it in.”

“I came here yesterday and searched all day and night because I heard of what happened,” said Benny Polatseck, 21, a volunteer from Monsey, NY. “It’s a horrific, horrific story and a horrific ending.”

Another volunteer, Joel Walter, 25, said he was with Kletsky’s parents Monday night.

“They were very stressed and frightened, as every parent would be,” said Walter, of Borough Park. “They were crying, they didn’t know what the end would be. They were hoping they’d still find him.”

Kletsky was last seen on surveillance video around 45th Street and Dahill Road walking behind a bearded man in a white shirt and dark pants.

“The boy is standing alone at some point. The male crosses the street in his direction, and the boy follows him on Dahill Road,” said NYPD spokesman Paul Browne, adding that it’s unclear whether the pair exchanged words.

The suspect is seen driving off in a gold, possibly Japanese-make car, although “we don’t know for certain whether the boy had gotten into the vehicle or not,” he said.

Leibby’s distraught dad, Nachman, a passenger-van driver with five daughters, reviewed the earlier footage. “He had tears in his eyes,” said Moishe Lefkovitz, the manager of the locksmith shop at 44th Street and 15th Avenue where the surveillance footage was taken.

“He kept shaking his head, saying, ‘Where are you going? Where are you going? What are you doing?’ ”

Authorities say the boy was caught on video walking alone from the Boyan Day Camp at a school on 44th Street near 12th Avenue at 4:50 p.m. Monday after returning from a class trip to Manhattan Beach Park.

Leibby — who usually takes the bus — was allowed to leave camp on foot so he could meet his mom and dad just seven blocks away, where they had a doctor’s appointment.

The couple even took special pains to repeatedly go over the boy’s walking route with him, a pal said.

The child had instructions to walk up 44th Street to 13th Avenue and then turn right on 13th Avenue and walk straight across to 50th Street, said a family friend, Rabbi Bernard Freilich.

“It sounded like he wasn’t an expert on the streets,” Freilich said.

Surveillance shows the boy walking out the front door on 44th Street toward 13th Avenue, as instructed, but instead of turning right toward the meeting spot, he kept going.

Video footage from the locksmith shop shows him on that corner at around 5:20 p.m. The last known footage of him with the suspect was recorded between 5:30 and 5:45 p.m.

His parents waited until 7 p.m. before contacting the Shomrim, the local civil-patrol group. Shomrim contacted the NYPD at 8 p.m.

Officers and search dogs, aided by the scent of Leibby’s personal belongings — including of his black leather shoes — flooded the school looking for clues. An estimated 3,000 volunteers — including busloads from Hasidic communities in Lakewood, NJ, and upstate Monsey — joined the search.

“I haven’t slept since Sunday,” said Bob Moskovitz, the coordinator for the Flatbush Shomrim. “Then today you wake up, you’re tired, and the first thing you hear is this horrible news. You’re totally wiped out. It’s a total disaster. You’re running on adrenaline, and all of a sudden, this. It’s a horrible, horrible situation.”


  • 1. NO beard wrote:

    Why did you put a picture of him without the beard? To make as if he’s not so frum? put up the picture with the beard; people need a wake up call.

  • 3. dont start wrote:

    dont start with the mental illness thing – hes a sicko and theres no excuse.

    also, he went to work but it doesnt mean he had already committed the murder. he may have only killed late last night because he started to panic and tried to get out of the situation. i hope though that wasnt the case…that he didnt leave him to suffer all day and night…

  • 5. Cherie wrote:

    My prayers to the Family of this boy! What a horrible story! I went to sleep last night praying they would find him alive to learning this morning they did find him but not alive! I feel so sorry for the parents of Leibby!
    I hope God gives you strength to get threw this!

  • 6. motive wrote:

    this still doesnt answer any questions as to why?! How? did leiby know him? whats the history?! it doesnt make sense…the whole thing is strange…

    and im pretty sure that well never hear the details of what really happened bc theyre going to try to keep those parts of the investigation quiet…

  • 7. again wrote:

    again your headline is misleading!! you are a terrible and manipulative journalist. there is no reason to believe the murder was committed any time before last night, its just as likely he did it after he came home from work. doesnt make much difference, but its again an example of your bad senstationalist journalism!!!

  • 8. A little more respect for the police? wrote:

    Note: The police that CH residents love to hate cracked this case at 2am.

  • 9. sara wrote:

    why doesnt everyone stop speculating and ztart doing. this is a double tragedy. people should be davening and taking on more mitsvos….

  • 11. elisha wrote:

    i want to know what did this mans local community aware about him what did they know and maybe not tell

  • 12. esther benarroch wrote:

    dear readers,
    My heart goes out to leiby’s family on this horrific tragedy that you have just been hit by. you should only know from simchas.
    I would like to suggest to all parents of school age since this tragedy happened YOU should pick up and drop off your own child whether it be camp or school. I think this would be a good lesson for parents to learn and not be frightened
    that they are walking home camp and school.

  • 13. R. Gould wrote:

    why don’t we concentrate on what is important at this point in time, like when can the family bury the niftar.
    the press with all the comments going back and forth only adds pain to this family. let the system do what it needs to do with this person and let the family be able to say kaddish for the pure Neshama of leiby. May H”B comfort the family among the mourners of Yerushalem. To all those who might want to the house of mourners, my I suggest you don’t, the crowds will simply overwhelm the family and unfortunately there is always someone who says the wrong thing.

  • 14. A-S השם יר wrote:

    frum?? It makes me so angry now!!!!!u all wear costumes here! I lose my Hamonah in this community , you can not trust no one! Everything is fake here!
    is it possible that the person who murder the kid was a jew?? what did that little boy ever do?!

    השם ירחם! Baruch Dayan Haemet

  • 15. miri wrote:

    he probably sexually assualted him, and then got scared, why would he take this boy if not for a reason, mental illness does not mean he would just grab him and take him home!!! May Hashem avenge his death, an eye for an eye, is’nt that what Torah says!!!

  • 16. to number 5 wrote:

    note that the police that crackd this case are not from the crown hights devision. and that g-d forbid we should have to come to this situation to catch the atention of the police

  • 18. human being wrote:

    Cannot understand this how can this happen, such EVIL, it is just unthinkable, that another human being could do this. Did we not have enough pain already, how much more can we take!!!!
    May Hashem comfort his family and all Klal Yisroel

  • 19. caring mom wrote:

    stop with all your stupid comments this devil of a person doesnt mater what he was frum or not frum .today you cant trust anyone .teach your children to not talk to strangers no matter how fru m they look children should know not to trust nobody.. equipt your children with a safe cell phone and dont let a little boy or girl be alone in the street.

  • 20. A Perv-ect opportunity? wrote:

    My guess this was a crime of opportunity at the PC they said Leibby was lost and after waiting 7 minutes on the corner outside the dentist office he asked the perv (with beard and looking frum and honest to a 9 year old)for directions he probably offered him a ride to his mother and being a perv couldn’t resist attacking his naieve passenger.

    They will need a confession to find out how he kept him from jumping out of the car and running when he saw the final stop was not his mother.

  • 21. Cali K wrote:

    Its sad how everyone is harassing each other about things that absolutely don’t matter. A family just lost their brother. Parents just lost a child. Can you write something else? Except accusing, and picking at the most ridiculous things? BDE. May he rest in peace and may the family know no more sufferings.

  • 22. To #2 wrote:

    You missed my point, I’m disgusted about what happened. My question is why DIDN’T they put up the picture of him with his beard (all other websites have him looking a lot more frum)…are they trying to say that a person with a beard can’t commit such a crime?

  • 23. possible scenario wrote:

    Leibby was at a park with his camp. the temperature was over 90 degrees. he may have been slightly dehydrated and disoriented by the heat. he was not familiar with the route and missed his turn. seeing the disoriented child, and being an unstable individual, Levi Aron may have thought he could take the child home and keep him. but when Leibby wanted to go home and he screamed, Aron had to stop the screams and the suffocation may have been unintentional. but then Aron had to get rid of the evidence and the boy would not fit into the suitcase. Aron was desperate and did what he did. it is amazing that he got caught.

  • 24. Andrea Schonberger wrote:

    This is absolutely horrific!!! Like something out of a creepy horror movie only true. What was that man thinking of when he murdered that little boy in such a gruesome manner?!! I don’t want to hear anything about him having mental problems–that’s no excuse and no comfort to his grieving and devasted family, especially his poor parents. The DA should seek the death penalty.

  • 25. jacob wrote:

    i think today is the day i am not proud of being a jew and i feel the religous frum should get in the idea of going to get prositutes and make them kosher so the frustration of sick perverts like this can be releived in a normal manner i will be glad that this sick sob gets the same treatments he gave the poor boy when he asked directions

  • 26. see who u should stay away from in CH wrote:

    any stories to add? Any more names to post — do it — it’s a mitsva to save pure innocent neshamos!

  • 27. Keystone Kops wrote:

    “Police got a tip about Aron based on surveillance video released late Tuesday night, and tracked him at his home in Kensington. Kelly acknowledged publicly the Shomrim Patrol for providing a license plate number that lead the to Levi.”

    See who really did the work that solved the crime? In any case not all cops are anywhere near as bad as the 71st. The 71st is too big a precinct with too many different problems. It needs to be split.

  • 28. to #4, 5 and 6 wrote:

    #4 you took the words right out of my mouth. some sick lawyer is going to try and pull the “insanity” claim here and he will be back on the streets before you know it. maybe then some friends of the family will take matters into thier own hands.

    to #5 its the CH police in the 71 pct. that the CH residents dont like – NOT the NYPD.

    to #6 its 100% NOT misleading, the point here is how a yid can do something like this and not even feel a bit of remorse and continue life as normal knowing what the 3000+ volunteers are doing and what the family is going through.

    when you have to sit there with tears in your eyes thinking of a headline – what will come to your mind “nice sweet jewish man arrested – BUT WAIT he is inniocent until proven guilty and sane”.

  • 29. rs wrote:


  • 30. es wrote:

    Maimonides laws of murderers and the saving of life , chapter 1 laws 6, 10, 11 and 15, 16. “ Anyone who is pursuing someone to murder them , every Jew is commanded to save the victim , even to the extent of murdering the pursuer…not just in the case of a killer but anyone pursuing someone to commit a sexual crime (ar’ri’ose) should kill the pursuer…if you see a murderer or sexual criminal and do not is as if you have destroyed the world..” The Rambam understood (Torah’s law) that sexual crimes are equivalent to and can end in murder. For too long the Jewish communities have been egregiously negligent in dealing with this cancer. We must stop the soft approach to sexual criminals of every stripe. Every one is especially responsible to be on the lookout for those who see children as easy victims. There can be no mercy on them. They will kiill if they are cornered. We cannot rely solely on the authorities for dscovery. If you suspect someone or something, investigate. Report it. Do something. It’s not some petty crime , its murder – as todays gut wrenching and terribly horrible events demonstrate. Sending them to a new town or expelling them from a school or institution is aiding and abetting their deviance. They must be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law on the first known infraction. And perhaps its also time to consider ways to implement the Rambam’s law in its fullest.

  • 31. Get the garbage out! wrote:

    The tip of the iceberg. Those are the low hanging fruits (nuts). There is more dreck out there that has to be exposed, and some real surprises may be in store (I have no idea myself, but we know that besides obvious offenders, there are sometimes those who really get away with looking normal).

    I knew L. B. was not normal and he is just the type of 770 character that has to go, far out of the shechuna and far away from civilization.

  • 32. Let-s hope wrote:

    Let’s hope he is mentally ill I wouldn’t want to think even a slightly normal person would do this.

  • 33. Donna Eichenwald wrote:

    My thoughts and prayers to this little boy and his family, but I agree with the other reader who suggested that children of this age should not be out on their own. This article indicates the child was supposed to meet his parents seven blocks away from where he started out, while the mainstream press articles indicate it was three blocks. Either way, children shouldn’t be on their own in the city. My twins are six and a half years old, and they absolutely won’t be out on their own any time soon. I simply don’t understand why his parents didn’t pick him up if they were so close by, especially if they were meeting him for a medical appointment. So sad!

  • 34. @jacob wrote:

    How does one make prostitution ‘kosher’, Jacob? Prostitutes don’t mean anything to someone who wants molest little boys.

  • 35. #25, you are mistranslating wrote:

    The vast majority of such “sexual crimes” are NOT “giluy arayos”, and do NOT make a person a rodef. Only specific acts are “giluy arayos”, and they are uncommon in such cases. Further, if he is not using force then he is not a rodef, even if the other party is under 17; a “mefateh” is not an “oines”.

  • 36. Yid wrote:

    Andrea you are so correct. There will always be the psychological explanations such as blaming it on a certain type of mental illness with diagnostic criteria. The APA or AMA could blame it on any type of biochemical imbalance but what they fail to understand is that some types of “Mental Illness” are actually an entire different phenomena where the killer is making informed decisions and is guided by Free Choice. All of the psychological explanations such as anger or whatever have no relevance to a serial killer.

    There are those who try to explain Hitler’s madness on psychology. As if to say “we need to get him help.” This is probably why the Talmud teaches the concept “Adam Muad Leolam;” there was a question about a person who did harm in his sleep or while under the influence of alcohol. The Talmud concludes that “Adam Muad Leolam” that “a human is responsible for his actions in all scenarios,” even in his sleep or while under the influence of a drug. This is what modern psychology fails to acknowledge when they try to justify horrible wrongdoing on “insanity.”

  • 38. ALWAYS A PROUD JEW wrote:

    JACOB. GO GET A ####### LIFE. YOUR A ####### MORON. One guy does something disgusting and you all of a sudden reject your beliefs and your faith. This #### has been happening throughout civilization. Wake the #### up. Your obviously an ignorant ####, easily swayed and convinced by everything around you. GROW UP. And instead of taking this story and causing yourself to regret living and doubting your faith/ belief. Look at it from another angle. OVER 3,000 volunteers banded together and searched for this kid, FRUM JEWS. Show me one example of such a thing, where an entire community showed so much support for one another in such a similar fashion.

  • 39. crazy !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! wrote:

    besides killing him which is terrible!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! he also took his body and like sloughtered it he is the worst person in the world even if he is a jew i hope he dousnt come back alive when mushiach comeas !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • 40. IS IT 100% SURE ITS HIM? wrote:


  • 41. Saddened from South Arfrica wrote:

    I live in South Africa and this is the most horrible story. Instead of people commenting on the size of this man’s beard let’s not forget that an innocent child is dead. I am a frum lubavitcher with 3 children of my own (my oldest child is a boy of 8) and for something like this to happen is just terrible. My husband and I have not slept since we heard and we have made sure that our two older children are aware that they are not to speak to strangers or go anywhere without us. May Leibby’s neshama have an aliya and may all this terrible suffering and pain be at end with Moshiach now. My prayers go out to his family.

  • 42. Leah in Oregon wrote:

    There are no words, only tears.How beautiful for the community to pull together as one through this horrific tragedy ! Nowhere else, no other people BUT the frum jews would do such a wonderful thing.Over 8,000 people attended tonight, so many prayers, so many tears….Hshem , please no more tragedies as this for our people, and we should ONLY know from simchas from the boy’s family ! Hshem, please protect our children from these evildoers ! Hshem, please bless this family with more sons ! and may they have nachas from their children ! Hshem,please let us all learn something from this ! Hshem, please help us parents prepare our children better & teach them not to be so trusting.WE WANT MOSIACH NOW AND WE DON’T WANT TO WAIT !

  • 43. NO PROOF wrote:

    The whole story sounds like ,a blood libel from long ago,the Goyim killed the child and blamed the Jew.I am sure its again that story.How come people are so naive.Did you all have 100% proofs?why doesntthe Gedoley Yisroel mix in and check out that its 100% true,and not prefabricated to create antisemitism.Its more like an arab story to me than something commited by any Yod even a meshougener.

  • 44. esther wrote:

    May this family have much nachas from all thier children and they should only see the good things may hashem bless them with more pure neshamos like their dearest son liebby and they should live happily with only simcha in their lives may liebbys pure neshama reach van Eden

  • 45. Just a Jew wrote:

    Such concern for whether he’s a frum Jew, looks like a frum Jew, mental illness, calling each other names, etc. How about this: Think about the last moments of this child, what he went through. What Leiby’s parents have to live with. What his sisters have to live with. What all of Klal Yisroel has to live with. If Aron Levi’s parents are alive, if he has siblings – what THEY have to live with. Do something to change the world for the better. He is a monster, a demon. Monsters come in every shape and size. Where do they come from? Did we create him – and are we creating (chaz v’sholom) more with inappropriate and disrespectful behavior?

  • 47. Marilyn Thompson wrote:

    To the Kletsky family: Please know that millions of people are thinking of you and praying for you in your time of loss. We know that there is nothing we can do or say that will bring your precious boy back to you, but we care and want you to know that.


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