DECATUR, Ga. - An Atlanta man was indicted Tuesday on a charge of malice murder in the November slaying of a 36-year-old father who was gunned down after he dropped off his son at a suburban preschool.
The DeKalb County grand jury also charged Hemy Zvi Neuman with possession of a firearm during the commission of a felony in the Nov. 18 shooting of Russell Sneiderman, said DeKalb County District Attorney Robert James. The indictment led officials to cancel a court hearing where prosecutors were scheduled to unveil key evidence in the case for the first time.
Neuman's defense attorneys told reporters at a news conference they were disappointed they didn't have a chance to raise questions about the evidence prosecutors had gathered so far.
"We don't know what the district attorney knows," said Robert Rubin, one of Neuman's defense lawyers.
Prosecutors have said little about Sneiderman's death since taking over the investigation from the Dunwoody Police Department a month ago. James has repeatedly declined to comment on a possible motive in the case, along with any other aspects of the investigation.
"We will not try this case in the media nor will we discuss the evidence that will be presented at trial," said James, who said he's confident in the state's case. "If I were not confident, I wouldn't have brought it before the grand jury."
But some details have emerged. Neuman, 48, supervised Sneiderman's wife, Andrea, in the quality and engineering department of GE Energy in Atlanta, the company said. Andrea Sneiderman said in a statement Tuesday she was "shocked" when she learned of Neuman's arrest and that she considered him a "friend of our family."
"I have been assured by the DeKalb County District Attorney's Office that Mr. Neuman is Rusty's killer and that they will do everything in their power to bring him to justice," she said. "My family and I are cooperating in any way we can to assist them in their efforts."
Sneiderman, a father of two who was a financial consultant before joining a private venture firm, was killed in the parking lot of a Dunwoody preschool minutes after dropping off his 2-year-old son. Witnesses said the killer sped off in a silver minivan. The case shook the affluent north Atlanta suburb of Dunwoody, where authorities urged witnesses to come forward with tips and Sneiderman's family offered a reward. Police even set up a system that allowed tipsters to send encrypted text messages.
Police have said they believe Sneiderman may have been deliberately targeted, and not a random victim, because no words were exchanged between him and the gunman.
Neuman, who is from Israel, said little during a January court appearance and refused to answer questions as he was escorted from the courtroom. He has a home in suburban Cobb County, authorities said, and his Facebook page said he was a graduate of Georgia Tech and a father of three, including two children who study engineering at his alma mater.
Sneiderman's brother, Steve, said Tuesday his family is grateful for the work of prosecutors and police investigators.
"We look forward to making sure there's justice for Rusty," he said.