Incident at SIST Leader's Maryland Home Ruled an Accident

By: Mikel Lauber Email
By: Mikel Lauber Email

The incident that left a woman seriously injured and led to a police raid of a Pikesville, Maryland home is being ruled an accident, after the victim and witnesses told police her injuries were the result of a construction accident, rather than a first-degree assault, as police initially suspected.

Last week, a SWAT team surrounded the home of Avraham Cohen, who is the president of the Samanta Roy Insitute of Science and Technology, or SIST, which was once based in Shawano. It happened after a 911 call from the home reported a woman was injured there. Police initially reported they believed it was the result of a first degree assault.

According to police reports, Menasseh Goldberger told police he was working on a construction project in the home with the victim, Carmella Goldstein, when she fell off a cart onto her face. Another woman, who the report refers to as 'interviewee Roy', was then called to the home, and contacted authorities.

Goldstein was transported to the hospital, and was found to have a broken pupil, punctured lung, fractured ribs, torn cervix, broken pelvis, and fractured tibia, according to the police report. An emergency room doctor said the injuries were not consistent with a fall from a trailer.

According to the report, Interviewee Roy refused to answer questions for police without a lawyer. When they returned to the home to question witnesses inside, Goldberger refused to open the door. The Baltimore County Tactical Team was notified and surrounded the home. FBI agents were also present, according to witnesses. Goldberger eventually came out of the home and was taken into custody, questioned, and released.

Police obtained a search warrant and entered the home. They found granite slabs that with blood on them. According to the report, "It appeared as if it were a possibility that Victim Goldstein and Interviewee Goldberger were pushing the cart at which point it became stuck in the grate. The slabs of granite then fell off the cart and landed on Victim Goldstein..."

Carmella Goldstein was last known to be in stable condition at the hospital.

Law enforcement has said SIST was the subject of an FBI investigation into a hit list discovered in Shawano in 2008. That investigation is still ongoing, according to the FBI. No charges have ever been filed.

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