Attorney wants body exhumed to determine cause of death

Attorney Michael Sussman, at the microphones, is joined by forensic investigators Michael Archer and Drew Caprood.

NEW CITY – The attorney for Grafton Thomas of Greenwood Lake, the man accused of attacking several people at a Monsey rabbi’s house during a Hanukkah celebration last December, has petitioned the court in Rockland County to have the body of one of the victims exhumed.

Josef Neumann, who had been in a nursing home since the attack, died recently and the Rockland County District Attorney indicated he would seek to elevate attempted murder charges to murder.

Attorney Michael Sussman wants to know if it was, in fact, the machete attack, that killed Neumann or COVID-19.

“We were in the heart of the COVID situation, especially in nursing homes where he was housed. So, we made an application at that point to the judge to do an autopsy but based on Jewish burial rituals and rules, burial occurred that very day, it would require disinterring the body to allow the autopsy,” Sussman said.

There has been no ruling from the court at this point.

Several other people were injured during the attack, but none as seriously as Neumann.

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