Tel Aviv shooter visited target pub before attack

Security footage shows a suspected Arab Israeli gunman leaving a grocery on Dizengoff Street in Tel Aviv with a machine gun in hand, seconds before he opened fire and killed two people on January 1, 2016. (screen capture)



The suspected terrorist who opened fire on a Tel Aviv bar Friday, killing two, spent time reconnoitering the streets where he carried out the attack.

Images gathered from CCTV cameras in the area of the shooting showed Nashat Milhem, 29, of the Israeli Arab town of Arara, walking around the Dizengoff Street area, the Hebrew-language Walla news website reported on Tuesday.

The deadly shooting took place outside the Simta bar on the busy street. Shift manager Alon Bakal, 26, and patron Shimon Ruimi, 30, were killed in a hail of bullets as the gunman opened fire with a submachine gun he stole from his father.

Seven people were wounded.

Nashat Milhem, the Arab Israeli man who allegedly carried out the shooting attack in Tel Aviv on January 1, 2016. (Israel Police)

Nashat Milhem, the Arab Israeli man who allegedly carried out the shooting attack in Tel Aviv on January 1, 2016. (Israel Police)

Footage also showed how Milhem succeeded in evading the first police squad vehicle that arrived at the scene by hiding in the entrance to an apartment building on Spinoza Street.

He then escaped and has remained on the run ever since. The police manhunt has mostly focused on Tel Aviv, specifically the north of the city, where Milhem once worked and lived.

Earlier Tuesday, released CCTV footage from the scene of the attack shows people sitting in a cafe on the popular Dizengoff Street and running for cover when the gunfire begins.

The gunman can be seen coming into shot, as he sprays the street with his automatic weapon.

He had been filmed moments earlier in a natural foods grocery store, calmly removing the murder weapon from his backpack and stepping into the street. A Quran was later found in the backpack.

After the shooting at the bar, Milhem went on to allegedly kill cab driver Amin Shaaban, an Arab Israeli father of 11 from Lod, who was found shot to death in north Tel Aviv an hour after the attack.

The suspect in the January 1, 2016 shooting attack in Tel Aviv, 29-year-old Nashat Milhem, seen after a 2007 arrest. (Channel 10 news)

The suspect in the January 1, 2016 shooting attack in Tel Aviv, 29-year-old Nashat Milhem, seen after a 2007 arrest. (Channel 10 news)

He then drove the cab to Namir Road, where he abandoned it near a bus stop. Namir is a major north-south artery in north Tel Aviv, from which Milhem could have caught a public bus or other transportation out of the city.

His mobile phone was found on nearby Reading Street in Ramat Aviv.

Milhem had previously spent five years in prison for stabbing an IDF soldier and trying to steal his weapon in 2007.

Since Friday afternoon, Milhem has remained at large. Authorities have warned he is armed, dangerous and capable of striking again.

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