CALL TO ACTION:
If you or anyone you know was sexually violated by Rabbi Yehuda Kolko contact Jeff Herman at: 1-800-686-9921
December 7, 2006 -- Rabbi Yehuda Kolko was arrested in New York City following a long-term investigation, police said.He was charged with four counts of sexual abuse, including two felony counts, and endangering the welfare of a child. The alleged victim was in the first grade during the 2002-03 school year. Video
May 5, 2006 Rabbi Yudi Kolko and Yeshiva Torah Temimah were hit with a $20 million civil lawsuit accusing him of molesting two students more than 25 years ago.One of the alleged victims said Rabbi Yehuda Kolko, 60, sexually assaulted him when he was a seventh-grade student.
September 12, 2007 -- Rabbi Yehuda Kolko was re-arrested on new charges for allegedly molesting another boy at at Yeshiva Torah Temimah. Rabbi Kolko's wife was able to raise the bail to $50,000 bond, $25,000 cash within the hour and he was released in time to pray at evening Rosh Hashanah services.
By ALEX GINSBERG
New York Post - September 13, 2007
September 13, 2007 -- A Brooklyn rabbi already facing trial for allegedly molesting two students was charged yesterday with fondling a third.
Rabbi Joel Kolko, an administrator and a teacher at a Midwood yeshiva, posted $25,000 additional bail a few hours before sundown signaled the start of Rosh Hashanah.
He had been free on $5,000 bail, awaiting trial on charges he touched a 6-year-old boy in one of his classes, as well as a now-31-year-old former student who confronted the rabbi about abuse he claimed occurred decades ago.
The new sex-abuse and child-endangerment charges focus on a 2005 incident in which Kolko alleged fondled the genitals of a first-grade boy.
Lawyer Jeffrey Schwartz scoffed at the new accusations, saying they were fabricated by a disgruntled former student now dragging the rabbi's name through the mud on an Internet blog, The Unorthodox Jew, and trying to recruit new victims to bring cases.
"In 21 years of trying criminal cases, both as a prosecutor and a defense attorney, I have never seen a case so weak," Schwartz told the judge, adding that his client had taken and passed two polygraph tests and been cleared by a rabbinical court.
December 3, 1984 -- Brooklyn District Attorney Elizabeth Holtzman's office said Mondrowitz was named in an arrest warrant charging him with two counts of sex abuse". At the time, Rabbi Avrohom Mondrowitz worked in special education school for boys in Brooklyn, that had connections with Ohel Children and Family Services in Brooklyn, New York. He was responsible for about 20-25 young children who already had either emotional problems and/or learning disabilities.
October 11, 2007 -- Brooklyn District Attorney Charles Hynes finally signed papers requesting the U.S. Justice Department extradite Rabbi Avrohom Mondrowitz back to the United States. Fled to Israel months after charges were first brought up against him twenty-three years ago.
November 16, 2007 -- Israeli police arrested Avrohom Mondrowitz, a Gur Hasid who was suspected of sexually abusing children in the United States was arrested pending extradition orders to the U.S.
November 18, 2007 - At the extraditon Hearing for Alleged Serial Child Molester, Rabbi Avrohom Mondrowitz, the judge extended Mondrowitz's detention until November 27, at which point he will decide whether Mondrowitz will remain in jail or be placed under house arrest. Mondrowitz's attorney, David Ofek, said he plans to appeal the decision to keep Mondrowitz in custody.
November 29, 2007 - The Israeli Minister of Justice released that Mondrowitz's extradition case is being handled by the Department of International Affairs of the Office of the State Attorney (prosecutors Nili Gesser and Marlene Mazel-Herskowitz) and in cooperation with the Israeli Police's Interpol Department.
by Adam Dickter
New York Jewish Week - November 16, 2007
The fugitive chasidic man accused of abusing four boys whose parents brought them to him for psychotherapy was arrested in Israel today and now awaits extradition to the U.S., a step his accusers have been seeking for more than 20 years, Haaretz reported. Rabbi Avrohom Mondrowitz, who worked in Borough Park, is a member of the Gur sect who fled to Israel in 1985 after being indicted on eight counts of child abuse and four counts of sodomy. The alleged victims ranged in age from 9 to 15.
One of the accusers claims he came to Mondrowitz to be treated after being abused by a teacher, only to then be abused again by Mondrowitz, whose credentials as both a rabbi and psychologist have been disputed by critics who have delved into his background.
The case has been a political thorn in the side of Brooklyn District Attorney Charles J. Hynes for years as sex-abuse watchdogs accused him of reluctance to apprehend and prosecute Mondrowitz for fear of offending Orthodox voters. The case has also been notorious because of allegations that teachers and rabbis in Mondrowitz's community looked the other way when confronted with accusations against him.
Hynes has said, through a spokesman, that until recent changes in extradition law between the U.S. were made, Mondrowitz was beyond his reach.
Earlier this week Israeli authorities nabbed another man accused of molesting Orthodox boys, Stefan Colmer, whose extradition was also sought by Hynes.
Mondrowitz lived in Tel Aviv and moved to Chicago in the 1950s, attending the Telshe yeshiva in Wickliffe, Ohio, according to Haaretz. He became a respected commentator and lecturer and opened a psychotherapy practice.
Rabbi Mark Dratch, founder of Jsafe, an organization supporting victims of sexual abuse in the Jewish community, said he has spoken with two of Mondrowitz's accusers, and believes there may be "hundreds" more.
"This is a tremendous step toward justice," said the rabbi of the pending extradition. "It gives hope to his victims and victims of other perpetrators may now be encouraged to step forward."
He said the Mondrowitz case was particularly notorious because of the large number of victims and because of the pressure on victims in the community not to come forward."
In the years since, says Rabbi Dratch, "across the spectrum of the community there is a lot more awareness and programs and safeguards in place, but we still have a long way to go. There are still issues to be addressed, such as fear of reporting to legal authorities." Amy Neustein, an activist who is writing a book about rabbinic abuse, called the arrest of Mondrowitz "a ray of sunshine for the victims because of the pain they have carried around for almost 25 years."
Accused of molesting several boys for over a fifty year period. Rabbi Shapiro was born in New York on July 22, 1916, and died April 7, 1989, in Baltimore, MD. His name is listed on this web page as a way of validate and empowering those he allegedly sexually abused.Rabbi Ephraim Shapiro was a graduate of the Rabbi Jacob Joseph School and Yeshiva University, New York, NY. He moved to Baltimore in 1941 to serve as the spiritual leader of Congregation Agudas Achim. In 1955 moved to New Rochelle, NY and then returned to Baltimore in 1957 to serve as rabbi at Tifereth Israel Anshe Sphard Congregation and also the principal of the Talmudical Academy until retiring in 1982. While working at the Talmudical Academy, Rabbi Shapiro worked as a guidance counselor and dorm counselor. Rabbi Ephraim Shapiro died in 1989 of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis also known as Lou Gehrig's Disease.
Rabbi's Abuse Victims Suffer Years Later
By Phil Jacobs
Baltimore Jewish Times - April 13, 2007
This article is part of a continuing series on child molestation within the Jewish community.
Photographer Murray Levin has looked through his camera lenses countless times, capturing Jewish weddings, bar mitzvahs and other joyous events. The one "picture," however, he can't stop focusing on isn't in his camera but in his 64-year-old memory.
It's an image of a bar mitzvah lesson at the old Agudas Achim Synagogue. It's the shame that came along with his teacher, the now-deceased Rabbi Ephraim F. Shapiro, placing his hand down the 12-year-old Murray Levin's pants and fondling him.
With at least half a dozen maftir lessons came the rabbi's touch.
But it wasn't just Murray Levin.
The former Talmudical Academy principal, by one influential Baltimore rabbi's estimate, molested hundreds of times.
Bob Glickstein, 65, another survivor of Rabbi Shapiro's fondlings, figures it could be thousands. One thing that hasn't survived for Mr. Glickstein is any connection to Judaism. Living now in Vero Beach, Fla., this yoga instructor calls his bar mitzvah day "the worst day of my life, because I had to have Rabbi Shapiro there."
Mr. Glickstein married out of the faith, had a child and raised him as a non-Jew. He not so jokingly calls himself an "anti-Semite."
This was part of the cost of Rabbi Shapiro's actions.
Rabbi Shapiro, who died in April 1989, remains "alive" in the memories of so many. His collateral damage is everywhere. A weekly Kiddush of respected businessmen meets, and the topic invariably turns to the sexual molestation the rabbi heaped on many of them.
Several local rabbis recently expressed profound compassion for the victims, encouraging them to seek qualified, professional help. Indeed, at two major Orthodox synagogues on the last day of Passover, rabbis spoke from the pulpit on the issue of child molestation. The Vaad Ha Rabbonim in a meeting last week issued a statement to the community condemning sexual molestation and supporting survivors to seek help.
The following are interviews with three of the rabbi's "survivors."
If you are a survivor or if you know of someone who survived any sexual molestation, you have an audience here.
The way Murray Levin sees it, sexual predators live in a world of "no risk and total reward."
Organized Judaism Å¨ be it congregations, schools or community groups Å¨ buries this news or distracts, he said.
"I don't think they see themselves getting apprehended," Mr. Levin said of predators. "They are bright people, great communicators and intellectual. And they will continue until we bring out the trauma they cause. We have to create an environment that shows them they can't continue without severe consequences."
Mr. Levin held his molestation in for decades. He does not want anyone else to hold back. Most of all, he sees it as a calling that older survivors must do what they can to protect all future generations, even if it means "teaching little children to speak out."
"Families," he said, "are going to have to speak up. We have to become the predator of the predators."
Mr. Levin was molested by Rabbi Shapiro and by one other person connected to the Agudas Achim Synagogue in the 3600 block of Reisterstown Road near Cold Spring Lane. He was studying for his bar mitzvah, which would take place at Shaarei Zion Synagogue.
"Rabbi Shapiro was grooming me with French kissing and masturbation," said Mr. Levin.
Mr. Levin kept it all quiet. He didn't know that there was a possibility of someone else involved until four years after his bar mitzvah. He was watching a football game on TV with a couple of friends. The friends pretended to tackle one another like football players, and one of them randomly said, "Rabbi Shapiro stuck his fingers in my ass."
That was Mr. Levin's first clue that he wasn't alone.
In between his molestation, Mr. Levin Å¨ who would lead junior services in shul and who described himself as a gifted and talented child, captain of the safety patrol, and concert master of his high school orchestra Å¨ began to fall internally. His image of self, his trust in boundaries and other people failed.
To this day, even though he makes a great deal of his living photographing the Jewish community, Mr. Levin wonders what might have been with his life had it not been violated.
"Many of us are still hiding," he said with a quiet voice.
"To me, anybody could be a pedophile," he said. "Everybody who works with or who is near our children need to be scrutinized. I want everyone to be aware of who you pass responsibility of your children to. I would like to see these predators at least be given an opportunity for rehabilitation, to be useful. But they have to be compelled to seek help. Also, people need to know who the pedophiles are, if they are alive or if they are dead. "
He doesn't want much to do with Judaism.
He can still "feel" the texture of Rabbi Shapiro's mustache against his face when he was being kissed.
Bob Glickstein's Jewish "upbringing" ended during his bar mitzvah lessons with Rabbi Shapiro at Agudas Achim.
"He used religion to molest young boys," said Mr. Glickstein.
Mr. Glickstein talks candidly in a Vero Beach coffee bar called Cacophony. He has only told a couple of people about his molestation.
But he wants the word out there now.
"Rabbi Shapiro knew what he was doing," said Mr. Glickstein. "He had a boys group he called the Akiba Boys of Agudas Achim. They would do chores around the shul. But meanwhile, he was molesting them. He had a system of bar mitzvah lessons that would feed into his molestation. Everything he did was about molesting boys.
"It was a horrific experience," he added. "He would call me into his office. He'd start playing with you."
It was difficult for Mr. Glickstein to continue. He sat up straight, perhaps finding confidence in a yoga posture, and he remembered some more.
He called his bar mitzvah the worst day of his life, because Rabbi Shapiro was in attendance. The rabbi was also at his father's funeral.
Mr. Glickstein kept it to himself, yet he used it as part of his influence to start looking into other religions, such as Eastern religions. A short marriage to a non-Jew resulted in a son, whom he raised out of the faith.
There was nothing joking about this comment on his face. "I am basically anti-Semitic," he said. "I like Jews, but I just need to stay away from them [as a result of his molestations].
"There's always been a lot of fear and anger in my life that comes as a result of Rabbi Shapiro's actions," he said. "There's never a time that passes that I don't think about him. There's anger and there's fear."
Mr. Glickstein said that he's always had difficulty since the molestations, which happened four to six times, when it comes to authority figures and establishing close relationships.
David Framowitz was an 11th-grade Talmudical Academy student from Brooklyn, N.Y., boarding in the school's dormitory. He said he was molested by Rabbi Shapiro on three separate occasions.
When Rabbi Shapiro attempted a fourth try, the high school junior threatened to kill the rabbi.
Mr. Framowitz, 49, remembers that Rabbi Shapiro was the dormitory counselor. He would lie in the beds of students, reaching to fondle them. And it was common he'd try to kiss them on the lips.
Mr. Framowitz, who now lives in Israel, was a major source for a New York Magazine article last year based on his $20 million federal lawsuit against Rabbi Yehudah Kolko and Yeshiva Torah Temimah of Flatbush in Brooklyn. (Mr. Framowitz said Rabbi Kolko molested him when he was around 12.)
"I became a student for seven months [at] TA in Baltimore," said Mr. Framowitz. "I had Rabbi Shapiro attack me three times. The last time I told him, Å¨You touch me one more time, I'll kill you.'
"He was the dorm counselor. He'd walk around and French kiss boys, poke them with his fingers. He'd lie across you when you were in bed. He'd play with you."
Mr. Framowitz would tell his mother, who insisted he leave TA immediately. None of the other boys he knew wanted to discuss Rabbi Shapiro.
He then gave several reasons why people stay so silent. "There's a fear factor," he said. "There's a worry over shidduchim [finding a match for marriage]. Å¨What are the neighbors going to say? It can't happen to a nice Jewish family. A rabbi doesn't do these things, especially a frum rabbi. There's something wrong with the boy. It's not the Jewish way, it's not the frum way. It can't be.'"
Last September during a visit to Baltimore, Mr. Framowitz decided to pay an unscheduled visit to Talmudical Academy. It was his first time there since 1974.
He met with Rabbi Yehuda Lefkowitz, the school's executive director. "I told Rabbi Lefkowitz that I was a victim of Shapiro's," said Mr. Framowitz. "I told him I thought there should be some sort of monetary scholarship fund to pay for the therapy of the victims."
Rabbi Lefkowitz informed the school's board, and grimly said "nobody took it as a joking matter."
Mr. Framowitz said he thinks there are well over 1,000 people who were molested by Rabbi Shapiro.
"The guy was a real sicko," said Mr. Framowitz. "He was worse than Kolko. I've made it through my life, but this is something you don't forget ever. It's always with you, always there. And if I'm not busy or not doing things, my mind wanders back to those days."
Rabbi Shapiro Is Deceased. Why Print This?
"He can't defend himself."
"He's deceased, what difference does it make now?"
"This is an embarrassment to his family."
These are just three of the reasons why we were asked not to print the name of the deceased Rabbi Ephraim F. Shapiro. Pikesville area mental health professionals offer suggestions to several concerns.
"He can't defend himself."
He died in 1989. He was eulogized before 700 people as a "man of deep religious devotion, Torah scholarship and gentle kindnesses, to his family, his students and to many in the community."
There are estimates of hundreds of molestation victims who weren't able to "defend" themselves while the rabbi was alive. There are young men whose lives were changed forever because of his acts. Some of these men are more figuratively "dead" than Rabbi Shapiro will ever be. They need our help, compassion and therapeutic assistance. It wasn't their fault. They can perhaps heal now.
"He's deceased, what difference does it make now?
Survivors may find answers and empowerment if they know that their molester was actually a survivor of Rabbi Shapiro's. Mental health professionals are legally obligated to report deceased perpetrators to Protective Services. The ensuing investigations focus on all of the perpetrator's survivors, and the subsequent possibility that they have or are currently molesting children as well. Given the reality that survivors are vulnerable to molesting others, and the cycle continues to perpetuate itself, it is imperative that the names of all perpetrators Å¨Å¨ dead and alive Å¨Å¨ are disclosed.
"This is an embarrassment to his family."
The models of discussion and behind-the-scenes declarations against molestation are not working, suggest one therapist, especially in the Orthodox community. At best, a person is taken away from a setting of teaching children, or sometimes sent out of town. Arrests, the courage of a survivor to charge his molester, don't happen a great deal of the time.
Perhaps if a pedophile knows that this is now about names and his association to names of innocent relatives. Perhaps, just perhaps, that will keep another child safe for a day.
Who Was Rabbi Shapiro?
Rabbi Ephraim F. Shapiro was the former principal of Talmudical Academy. His April 1989 funeral services were held at the Old Court Road yeshiva.He was 72 when he died of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, or Lou Gehrig's disease.
Rabbi Shapiro was the son of Russian immigrants. He was born on New York's Lower East Side. A graduate of the Rabbi Jacob Joseph School and Yeshiva University, Rabbi Shapiro came to Baltimore in 1941 as spiritual leader of Congregation Agudas Achim.
He left in 1955 to become rabbi of a congregation in New Rochelle, N.Y. Two years later, he returned here to become the rabbi at the Tifereth Israel Anshe Sphard Congregation on Dolfield Avenue. He held that position until 1968.
In addition, he served as principal of TA, as well as working as a guidance counselor and a dorm counselor. When he retired in 1982, he was honored for 25 years of service to the yeshiva.
Arrested after allegations were made of child sexual abuse. Shapiro is the son of the deceased alleged serial sexual predator - Rabbi Ephraim Shapiro. Yisroel Shapiro was born in 1950.
October, 2004 -- A flyer was posted in the Jewish community in Baltimore as a way to warn community members of the allegations made against Rabbi Yisroel Shapiro.
July, 13, 2007 -- Rabbi Yisroel Shapiro became the target of a State's Attorney's Office investigation, when a few adult survivors filed a police report alleging that they were sexually victimized as children.
December 5, 2007 -- According to Tammy Griffin-Lawman of the Baltimore City, State's Attorneys office, Yisroel Shapiro was arrested and charged with two counts of sexual offense in the third degree, sexual offense in the fourth degree and battery.
CALL TO ACTION: Case of Rabbi Yisroel Shapiro
Demanding Transparency and Accountability from our Religious Leaders!
December 28, 2007
Back on April 11, 2007, the Vaad HaRabbonim/Rabbinical Council of Greater Baltimore signed a letter and made public a statement about dealing with "Abuse in Our Community".
To this day the members of the Vaad who signed the letter have not been held accountable for the issues they addressed. For the last four years the rabbonim of Baltimore have been aware that allegations were made against Rabbi Yisroel Shapiro, yet did nothing more then have him stop teaching bar mitzvah students -- and then helped in arranging for this alleged sex offender to have a job working for Wasserman and Lemberger's. The status quo in the Baltimore community has been to ensure those who are alleged to have molested children have a way to make a living, yet doing nothing to help those who have been sexually violated.
It's a well known fact in the orthodox community of Baltimore that Yisroel Shapiro daven's (prays) at Congregation Darchi Tzedek synagogue, located on Seven Mile Lane. This is a synagogue in which children can be seen running in and out of. One would think that Rabbi Yaakov Horowitz's first concern would be to make sure the children of his shul were protected and to start asking if any children might have already been molested so that he could assist in them getting help. To this day Rabbi Yaakov Horowitz has never issued public statement warning his congregants of the fact that Shapiro was arrested and charged with child molestation. Unless a parent read The Awareness Center's web page, has been reading blogs or another parent told them, they are unaware that there is an alleged sexual predator amongst them.
The Awareness Center is asking that everyone contact Rabbi Yaakov Horowitz and the Baltimore Vaad HaRabbonim Rabbinical and ask them to:
Make public the plan they established to notify parents in the community of the potential dangers of their children being left alone with Rabbi Yisroel Shapiro.
We are also asking that this statement include the safety plan created when Yisroel Shapiro is davening at Darchi Tzedek or any synagogue. They also need to make public the safety plan they established for Wasserman's and Lemberger," the retail business in which Shapiro is employed and also for any other public location Shapiro may enter.
Rabbi Yaakov Hopfer - President
Vaad Harabbonim of Baltimore
Rabbi Yaakov Horowitz
Congregation Darchei Tzedek
410-486-0445 (Rabbi Horowitz)
7307 7 Mile Lane
Pikesville, MD 21208
Members of the Vaad HaRabbonim
1. Rabbi Elan Adler, Moses Montefiore Anshe Emunah Hebrew Congregation
2. Rabbi Reuben Arieh, Ohr HaMizrach Congregation
3. Rabbi Menachem Goldberger, Congregation Tiferes Yisroel
4. Rabbi Emanuel Goldfeiz, Congregation Beit Yaakov
5. Rabbi Dovid Gottlieb, Cong. Shmorei Emunah
6. Rabbi Moshe Hauer, Bnai Jacob Shaarei Zion
7. Rabbi Dovid Haber, KAYTT and Star-K
8. Rabbi Moshe Heinemann, Agudath Israel of Baltimore and Star-K
9. Rabbi Yaakov Hopfer, Sheiris Yisroel
10. Rabbi Shmuel Kaplan, Chabad Lubavitch of Baltimore
11. Rabbi Nesanel Kostelitz, Machzikei Torah Congregation and the Community Kollel
12. Rabbi Chaim Landau, Ner Tamid
13. Rabbi Elchonon Lisbon, Bais Lubavitch - Chabad of Park Heights
14. Rabbi Sheftel Neuberger, Ner Israel Rabbinical College and High School
15. Rabbi Gavriel Newman, Beth Jacob Congregation
16. Rabbi Shlomo Salfer, Winands Road Synagogue Center
17. Rabbi Jonathan Seidemann, Kehilath B'nai Torah
18. Rabbi Simcha Shafran, Adath Yeshurun and the Bais Din of Baltimore
19. Rabbi Mordechai Shuchatowitz, Agudath Israel of Greenspring and Av Beis Din of Baltimore
20. Rabbi Shmuel Silber, Suburban Orthodox
21. Rabbi Amrom Taub, Arugas Habosem Congregation
22. Rabbi Y. Zvi Weiss, Bais Haknesses of Baltimore
23. Rabbi Mitchell Wohlberg, Beth Tfiloh
By Melissa Harris
Baltimore Sun - December 18, 2007
A former bar mitzvah lessons teacher in Baltimore's Orthodox Jewish community has been charged with sex offenses against two boys that are alleged to have occurred more than a decade ago, according to the city state's attorney's office.
The boys were learning to chant passages from the Torah at Israel Shapiro's home on Olympia Avenue on separate occasions in September 1988 and June 1994 when the offenses are said to have occurred, according to court documents.
Shapiro was charged Dec. 4 with felony child abuse, second-degree assault and a fourth-degree sex offense in both cases. The boys, who are related, came forward in June, according to Baltimore police spokesman Sterling Clifford.
Prosecutors handling the case were not in their office Tuesday, and the men making the accusations did not return phone calls Tuesday.
Accusations against Shapiro were known in the Orthodox community as early as 2004, when alleged victims began circulating a flier with Shapiro's name and picture, according to Vicki Polin of the Awareness Center Inc., which is an advocate on behalf of Jewish victims of sexual abuse in Baltimore.
Polin has posted a copy of the flier on the center's Web site.
According to court documents, Shapiro put the boys, then age 12 and 13, on his lap while they practiced chanting the Torah. One of the victims reported that Shapiro would touch him inappropriately over his clothing, and the other said he was held on Shapiro's lap against his will and touched inappropriately.
Shapiro, 57, works in a kosher butcher shop, according to the
Jewish Times, which reported extensively on the allegations in June.
A phone message left Tuesday at Shapiro's house was not returned.
Arthur C. Abramson, director of the Baltimore Jewish Council, said that the organization recently became aware of the allegations but had not been involved in the matter or Shapiro's removal from teaching.
"The Orthodox community -- that end of the Orthodox community -- tends to be very insular," Abramson said. "Information can circulate very rapidly within the framework of the Orthodox community, and it doesn't necessarily get out into more general circles unless reported by The Sun or the Jewish Times."
In April, amid discussions in the Orthodox community about the allegations, Vaad HaRabbonim of Baltimore, the city's Council of Orthodox rabbis, released a letter on "Abuse in Our Community."
"We feel it essential to discuss this matter directly with you, as the greatest allies of the abuser are ignorance and silence," according to the letter, which was signed by nearly two dozen rabbis.
Shapiro is out on a combined $175,000 bail in the two cases.
CALL TO ACTION: Case of Rabbi Moshe Eisemann and Ner Israel Rabbinical College
Click here: to download flier in to print out
There have been serious allegations of clergy sexual abuse made against Rabbi Moshe Eisemann. It's also been reported that the administration at Ner Israel Rabbinical College and several of the rabbonim in Baltimore have been inept in handling this case appropriately. For these reasons The Awareness Center, Inc. is demanding the following:
Rabbi Moshe Eisemann immediately find new living arrangements and be move off the campus of Ner Israel.
Rabbi Eisemann cease teaching and or tutoring students in his home or else where.
Rabbi Moshe Eisemann have absolutely no contact with children or male adults under the age of 40. (According to Jewish custom, forty is the age in which a man is considered mature enough to study Kabbalah and less likely be able to be sexually manipulated by an sexual predator).
Rabbi Moshe Eisemann be immediately evaluated by a licensed mental health professional who specializes in sex offenders. The professional must be approved by The Awareness Center, Inc. to insure the professional is not biased nor associated with Ner Israel or others.
Artscroll/Mesorah publications cease and desist from publishing, selling or distributing any books created by Moshe Eisemann.
All books written by Moshe Eisemann be banned by every yeshiva (seminaries) in the US and abroad.
Rabbi Moshe Eisemann not be allowed to leave the United States.
Ner Israel Rabbinical College finance a team of child abuse experts who will evaluate all past and present students of Rabbi Moshe Eisemann to determine if there are any more survivors. The team of experts will be approved by The Awareness Center to insure things are handled properly and appropriately.
Contact The Following:
Ner Israel Rabbinical College (and High School):
Rabbi Aharon Feldman - Rosh Yeshiva (Head of the School)
Rabbi Beryl Weisbord - Dean of Students
Rabbi Sheftel Neuberger - President
Rabbi Yaakov Hopfer - Shearith Yisrael (Glen Ave. Shul):
Phone: 410-466-3060 Fax: 410-367-9183
Phone: 718-921-9000 Fax: 718-680-1875
Rabbi Nosson Scherman, the General Editor
Meir Zlotowitz - Founder of Artscroll Publications
By Phil Jacobs
Baltimore Jewish Times (Page 24) - September 1, 2007
The whispering got louder in the summer of 2006. Rabbi Moshe Eisemann, 71, a beloved longtime Ner Israel Rabbinical College scholar, teacher and author, was associated with the words "alleged molester."
A Baltimore-area pulpit rabbi and Ner Israel colleague left Rabbi Eisemann off the invitation list to his daughter's wedding, because of the uncertainty of it all.
The blogs, the Internet sites, were teeming with allegations of molestations by many rabbis, including Rabbi Eisemann. There have never been any complaints or charges filed with the police against the rabbi.
When students identified themselves as victims to Ner Israel, the school allegedly chose Rabbi Yaakov Hopfer, president of the Baltimore Vaad HaRabonim, to look into the accusations.
Rabbi Hopfer, spiritual leader of Shearith Israel Congregation in Upper Park Heights, is not on the faculty or staff of Ner Israel. He did not return two telephone calls to the Baltimore Jewish Times made in early August of this year. His response could have cleared up much of the speculation. He also chose not to respond to a personal letter mailed to him by the Jewish Times on Aug. 5, 2007, pertaining to the status of Rabbi Eisemann. The letter was referred to by Rabbi Eisemann in a recent conversation he had with the Jewish Times.
Ner Israel's response to a request for answers on the subject was an e-mail from its president, Rabbi Sheftel Neuberger, which read: "Ner Israel takes claims and complaints of abuse made by an individual very seriously. It has implemented an independent process to investigate and deal with such claims and complaints as necessary. Given the sensitivity and nature of the subject, and the Yeshiva's concern for all involved, both claimant and accused, it is the policy of the Yeshiva to refrain from discussing or commenting on these matters."
The Jewish Times had asked: "Is Rabbi Eisemann still teaching at Ner Israel? Is he still living on campus in faculty housing?"
In the summer of 2006, this reporter telephoned Rabbi Sheftel Neuberger and asked these two questions. Rabbi Neuberger replied that "Rabbi Eisemann would most likely retire from the Ner Israel faculty" and "most likely move off of campus."
There was, according to a source close to the Vaad HaRabonim, no actual din Torah (rabbinic court ruling) in Baltimore concerning Rabbi Eisemann. Instead, the source confirmed that Rabbi Hopfer was asked to act as sort of a one-man decision maker.
The source said he thinks Rabbi Eisemann admitted some of the abuses to Rabbi Hopfer.
The abuses, according to another source, "weren't extreme, but were on the cusp of abuse," such as back-rubbing or kissing.
The source added that Rabbi Eisemann was allegedly also told to work through some of his issues with a therapist not connected to Ner Israel. That therapist, according to the source, did not consider Rabbi Eisemann's actions "terrible abuse."
Also, Rabbi Hopfer, according to the source, said that Rabbi Eisemann was "contrite."
Still, he was — based allegedly on Rabbi Hopfer's recommendations — retired from teaching students.
But in an interview last week with the Jewish Times, Rabbi Eisemann said that he denied any of the allegations of molestation. He also said that he was still "seeing students" and "still living on Yeshiva Lane," and was never directed by any rabbinic authority to leave campus or stop teaching.
"The whole story [concerning the molestations] is really removed from me," Rabbi Eisemann said. "I can't get involved in it. I feel totally removed from it. I haven't looked at any blogs or Internet sites, though people have told me about them.
"It is not I," he continued. "I have a life to live, and I don't have the strength to deal with these rumors. I have done no harm to anyone. It's all wrong, and I can't even dignify it."
But on Friday, Aug. 24, 2007, an e-mail arrived at the Jewish Times from Rabbi Eisemann. It simply stated: "After reflecting on our brief telephone conversation, I wish to make it clear that I voluntarily retired from Ner Israel in August 2006."
One source said: "You have Eisemann denying all of this. You have Ner Israel's legal statement. You have Rabbi Hopfer's judgment call. Also, Rabbi Hopfer found Eisemann's accuser credible. Put it all together, this is what you have."
Earlier in the summer, Rabbi Eisemann was in the Upper Park Heights neighborhood for Shabbat. Rabbi Moshe Heinemann gave him a VIP seat at the Agudath Israel Synagogue to daven. Rabbi Heinemann was one of 22 rabbis who signed a community letter last April of condemnation against child molestation.
Also, in Rabbi Eisemann's book, "Music Made in Heaven," copyright 2007, Rabbi Aharon Feldman, rosh yeshiva of Ner Israel, writes in a forward: "Rabbi Eisemann has deeply influenced the students at Ner Israel with his classes for over 30 years."
Perhaps the first public comments concerning Rabbi Eisemann came from the blog Unorthodox Jew and from a blog called Chaptzem.
One anonymous blogger wrote, "When I was __ years old, I was a talmid [student] of Ner Israel. At that time, the Mashgiach Ruchni [spiritual adviser] was Rabbi Moshe Eisemann. I became close to him and trusted him totally like a father figure. He is a very sick man. He would tell me he loved me and would hug and kiss me inappropriately."
Another anonymous blogger wrote that he met with New York Jewish Week publisher and editor Gary Rosenblatt, who wrote the expose on the molestations by former NCSY executive Rabbi Baruch Lanner. The blogger wanted advice on where he should go with his story of molestation.
Mr. Rosenblatt said he did receive a phone call from an alleged victim who wanted to discuss the issue of molestation specifically at Ner Israel. But, according to Mr. Rosenblatt, Rabbi Eisemann's name was never discussed.
Then there was another contact made. This time, it was with Rabbi Yosef Blau, a faculty member of Yeshiva University of New York. According to the YU website, "Rabbi Yosef Blau has been the masgiach ruchani (spiritual guidance counselor) at the Rabbi Isaac Elchanan Theological Seminary since 1977. He also is spiritual guidance counselor for students at the university's undergraduate schools and colleges for men." He is also the current president of the RZA (Religious Zionists of America). The Jewish Times traveled to Manhattan to meet with him.
The rabbi, who has counseled many sexually molested Jewish men and women, explained that he had ongoing contact with an individual who reported that Rabbi Eisemann had behaved inappropriately with him and others. He was loyal to the yeshiva, but was troubled by the lack of response to the allegations.
"Through him, I became aware of the process where Ner Israel graduates who had complained to the administration were asked to tell their stories to Rabbi Hopfer," said Rabbi Blau. "After he spoke with Rabbi Hopfer, he informed me that it was clear that Rabbi Hopfer believed the allegations. There would be an agreement that Rabbi Eisemann would be retired. There was a decision to leave him on the grounds so he wouldn't go somewhere else where they couldn't take responsibility. Rabbi Eisemann was allegedly retired without any explanation given. He stayed on campus. The fellow I am counseling is still somewhat disappointed with these results. But on the other hand, he didn't want to hurt the yeshiva and is filled with mixed feelings."
Mike Simms sits for a crowded but comfortable late lunch at the Hometown Buffet, a favorite restaurant location of his in Phoenix, Ariz. It's 115 degrees this afternoon, a day when a cold drink and a piece of fruit would do.
Instead, he's got the steamship round au jus on his plate, along with a salad and some hot potatoes and brown gravy.
Mike, who has graying long hair and a gregarious personality, brings up words like Rashi and drasha during informal conversation. He jokes that this is probably the first time those words have ever been spoken at the Hometown Buffet.
He's almost certainly correct.
A Hispanic woman comes over and takes away his empty plate. He gets up and goes for more.
Mike Simms, originally Zev Simanowitz, has come a long way since he was a student of Rabbi Moshe Eisemann, a teacher, author and scholar at Baltimore's Ner Israel Rabbinical College.
Mr. Simms, a Phoenix-area locksmith, former community newspaper publisher and writer, was Rabbi Eisemann's student in the 1960s at the Philadelphia Talmudical Academy.
He said he doesn't remember much from his classes with Rabbi Eisemann. But he does recall his former teacher had a "habit of staring at people's crotches. I knew that being around him there was an ongoing assault on my privates. He'd stare at my privates to the point where it made me uncomfortable."
So uncomfortable that as a young teen, Mr. Simms went to a local store and purchased an athletic supporter that would flatten out any hint of his genitals.
"I remembered that soon after I put on the jockstrap, he looked at me with this face of, `What happened?'" Mr. Simms said. It worsened, according to Mr. Simms. One day after school, he found himself alone in the classroom with the rabbi.
"I remember distinctly him trying to calm me down. He was talking to me about masturbation. He told me it was sh'cha'tat zera [destruction of the seed]," he said. "That was all very nice, but I didn't ask him for the lecture. I remember him saying that if you are not multiplying with your sperm, you are not multiplying. When he came out with this, I got like 40 shades of red."
Then Mr. Simms left the room, but not before he believes Rabbi Eisemann touched him on his rear end twice.
There were other troubling signs, recounted Mr. Simms.
"When he was teaching, he'd have sitting on his desk a boy who happened to be the smartest kid in the class," he continued. "He was slight of build, short and cute with glasses and curly light brown hair. Eisemann would sit there and this kid would sit at his right hand in front of the class. Eisemann would be patting his tush forever, almost caressing it at times.
"I was overwhelmed," he continued. "What do you say about the rebbe with the beard doing something like this?
"If Rabbi Eisemann was here in front of me now, I guess I'd say to him that I wish I had the courage to say something along the way even though I know I would have been ignored. I wish I had been more knowledgeable about the subject so that I could not have been so naive," he added.
Mr. Simms would go on to graduate from a different yeshiva. But when it came to continuing his Jewish education, he decided to go away from it to the extreme, joining the U.S. Marines. He stayed single all of his life.
In the Phoenix restaurant, he said the Rabbi Eisemann incident wasn't the exclusive reason he wasn't interested in Judaism any longer. It was just part of the process that turned him off.
"People like me could have been directed better," he said. "But everyone did the same thing, `Shut up and do this.' They would tear the covers off of Agatha Christie books because there was a woman on them. They lost us to unorthodoxy and to wandering in the land. They didn't teach us spirituality. They taught us religion. It was sit-down-and-shut-up stuff."
Mr. Simms takes some gulps of coffee from a brown cup.
"This was all a huge chilul HaShem," he said. "For me, it was an encounter with evil. But it was also the whole Tevya, `Fiddler on the Roof' thing. There was no room for question; You did things because you were told to do them. Even if it meant getting molested. Who knows what this guy did? Who knows?"
Mike Simms answered his cell phone on this day in August. It was time to go.
Someone was locked out.
Case of Rabbi Ephraim Bryks
This page is dedicated in the memory of Daniel Levin
New York, NY
WARNING: Rabbi Ephraim Bryks and Marriage Counseling
Ephrayim Bryks has become a rabbinic marriage counselor. The term marriage counselor or life coach can be used by anyone. He is not the only "rabbi" suspected of sexual abuse using one of these titles to access vulnerable individuals or couples both here and in Israel. Consulting actual professionals is expensive and unless the community publicly warns against going to these charlatans (often worse) many innocents will continue to be hurt.
Rabbi Yosef BlauRabbi Paysach Krohn, Rabbi Lipa Brenner and Alleged Sex Offender Rabbi Ephraim Bryks
The Awareness Center - November 12, 2007
The following article was written by Rabbi Paysach Krohn, and is about convicted sex offender, Rabbi (Lewis) Lipa Brenner. While reading the article remember that Rabbi Ephraim Bryks's wife is Rabbi Lipa Brenner's daughter; and Rabbi Paysach Krohn is married to Rabbi Ephraim Bryks sister.
It's a known fact that Rabbi Paysach Krohn has a long history of protecting those who allegedly, perpetrate crimes against children. An example of this is the fact that to this day he still helps his brother-in-law, Rabbi Ephraim Bryks get speaking engagements.
In the book "Around The Magid's Table", Rabbi Paysach Krohn portrays Rabbi Brenner as a righteous man even though he was being accused as being a child molester at the time. When Artscroll learned that Rabbi Brenner was barred from Yeshiva Torah Vodaas because of his sex crimes, they removed the story from later editions of the book. Back in the 1990's rumors circulated that Krohn new about the allegations when he published his book, yet decided to ignore them.
The original charges against Rabbi Brenner included, 14 counts of sodomy, sexual abuse and endangering the welfare of a child. Brenner agreed to plead guilty to one count of sodomy in the third degree, a Class E felony, in exchange for a sentence of five years' probation.
Prosecutors said Brenner had sexual contact with a youth he met in the bathroom of the synagogue they both attended. The molestation's allegedly took place over a three-year period that ended in 1995 when the victim was 15 years old.
On June 24, 2007, both Rabbi Paysach Krohn and Rabbi Ephraim Bryks presented at a Shabbaton (weekend retreat)
CALL TO ACTION: Contact Rabbi Paysach Krohn and ask him to stop promoting alleged child molester, Rabbi Ephraim Bryks. Remind him if another child is harmed that he could be held liable in a civil suit.
Rabbi Paysach Krohn, Certified Mohel
Toll Free: 866-846-6900
BEWARE! - Convicted child molester Yechiel Brauner gets new car
Chaptzem Blog - August 01, 2007
Convicted Boro-Park child molester Yechiel Brauner was seen driving a new car that is not listed on his offender registry entry. The car is a light blue late 90's model Mercury Grand Marquis with the license plate number BHZ 5385. There is a handicap permit hanging from the rear-view mirror and the back lights of the car are broken and have lens tape on them. Warn your children and teenagers not to accept any rides from the man driving this car.
Brooklyn Eagle - Janurary 2, 2007
BROOKLYN — Three Brooklyn men were indicted this week for allegedly stealing an elderly woman's home while she was dying of cancer. A fourth man remains at large.
The defendants are charged with forging documents to give defendant Russell Pitt power of attorney over a building the woman owned at 39 Herkimer St. in Bedford-Stuyvesant.
The indictment charges that in September 2004, Pitt and Nathen Farkas sold the home to Winston Roche. Roche, who is also charged in the scheme, allegedly divided the $476,000 mortgage with the other defendants. The woman died in 2005.
Defendant Jerry Brauner, who notarized Pitt's power of attorney, is charged with falsifying a notary public renewal application in which he denied that he was a convicted felon.
At their arraignments Wednesday, Farkas, 31, and Brauner, 53, were held in lieu of $85,000 bail. Bail for Roche, 59, was set at $45,000. Police are still searching for Pitt.
Brauner is charged with offering a false instrument for filing. Charges against Farkas, Roche, and Pitt include second-degree grand larceny, fourth-degree conspiracy and second-degree forgery.
Assistant District Attorney Michael Vaccaro is prosecuting the case for the Kings County District Attorney's Office.
Haaretz - May 24, 2007
A 15-year-old girl has come forward accusing Rabbi Shimon Gerlick, rabbi of Nahariya's Western Galilee Hospital and of the city's Amidar neighborhood, of indecent behavior. The popular rabbi was arrested three weeks ago after an 8-year-old and a woman, 30, accused him of indecent acts. He was held without bail, but is now under house arrest. (Jack Khoury)
By Jack Khoury, Haaretz Correspondent
Haaretz - May 24, 2007
The arrest of a popular Nahariya rabbi for allegedly committing indecent sexual acts was made public Thursday, after a judicial gag order was lifted.
Rabbi Shimon Gerlick serves as rabbi of the Nahariya hospital as well as rabbi of the city's Amidar neighborhood.
Police arrested him three weeks ago after an 8-year-old girl and 30-year-old woman accused him of indecent sexual acts. Police extended the remand of the rabbi twice before putting him under house arrest last week.
A 15-year-old girl came forward and issued a third complaint against the rabbi while he was under arrest, police said.
The 8-year-old, who was escorted to the police station by her family, said that when she was five she visited synagogue where the rabbi took her to a secluded area and sexually abused her.
The 30-year-old, who is married, said the rabbi sexually assaulted her on two separate occasions. Once when she came to him for counseling at the hospital and another time when she met him at a shop in the city. In her testimony she said that in both incidents Gerlick took her hand and placed it on his crotch.
The 15-year-old testified that she met the rabbi near one of the synagogues in town where he committed indecent acts.
All of the charges against the rabbi relate to incidents that took place in the past few years. Brigadier General Faraj Faras, Nahariya police chief, said that the decision to arrest Gerlick was only made after each of the complainants' testimonies had been checked and found truthful.
Rabbi Gerlick is a well-known and admired figure in Nahariya. Over the years he has carried out the wedding ceremonies of hundreds of couples in the town and the surrounding area. Acquaintances were shocked to hear of the charges. One close friend told Haaretz: "We don?t believe it. This is a rabbi that everyone knows on account of his understanding and wisdom. He is a very warm man, its impossible to believe he's capable of such acts."
Global manhunt ends child molester's flight - Alan Horowitz, 60, arrested in India after jumping parole last June
By Jordan Carleo-Evangelist
Times Union - Wednesday, May 23, 2007
Alan Horowitz, the notorious child molester who boldly dispatched a good-bye letter of sorts to his parole officer last year after bolting abroad, has been arrested in India, authorities said.
The arrest -- made Tuesday in India at 3:48 p.m., which was early Tuesday here -- ends a remarkable 11-month global manhunt for a man authorities describe as a remorseless predator with a brilliant mind.
A tip e-mailed to the "America's Most Wanted" television program steered authorities toward Horowitz -- one of New York's 100 most-wanted fugitives -- in Mahabalipuram, a city of about 12,000 on India's southeastern coast, parole officials said.
The U.S. Marshals Service, which joined the hunt for the Harvard-educated Level 3 sex offender in November, confirmed that Horowitz, 60, a trained rabbi, had been taken into custody.
Citing the sensitivity of the process of having Horowitz returned to the United States, the federal agency declined further comment.
Horowitz is being held on a U.S. warrant and is not accused of additional crimes in India, said Mark Johnson, a spokesman for the state Division of Parole.
Johnson said local authorities are examining Horowitz' travel documents, which included U.S. and Israeli passports. It could be days or weeks, he said, before Horowitz is returned to the United States, where he would face at least a parole violation, if not more charges.
The former psychiatrist who specialized in adolescents has dual citizenship in the United States and Israel. But he had no permission to leave the country, parole officials have said.
Retired Schenectady Police Investigator Peter McGrath, who tracked Horowitz across the country while trying to build a case against him more than a decade ago, said Tuesday he never doubted authorities would eventually find the man, who he counts among the most cunning predators he ever encountered.
"I knew they would (get him). I know the guys working on the case, and I knew they would," a pleased McGrath said after he was told of Horowitz' apprehension. "That's great."
In 1991, Horowitz was charged in Schenectady with more than 35 counts of sexual abuse and sodomy against three boys and a girl, all younger than 17. He later pleaded guilty and served more than 13 years in prison before he was paroled in 2004 as a highest-level sex offender.
Horowitz' documented criminal past dates to at least 1982 in Maryland, where he received five years' probation for "perverted sex practices," according to parole officials. But McGrath has said he believes there were more victims elsewhere who never came forward.
Once he was paroled in New York, Horowitz abided by the strict conditions of his release for about two years before apparently hopping a plane from New Jersey to Tokyo last June 8, just 24 hours after meeting with his parole officer, authorities have said.
Later that month, Horowitz' parole officer received a letter from him postmarked in Israel saying he'd never return to the United States -- a clear-cut violation of his parole, which lasts until 2011.
bout the same time Horowitz jumped parole, he informed another branch of state law enforcement -- the Division of Criminal Justice Services, which runs the sex offender registry -- that he was supposedly living in a Tel Aviv apartment complex. Whether he ever did, and where else he may have visited while on the run, was not clear Tuesday.
Jon Leiberman, a correspondent for "America's Most Wanted," which aired a segment on Horowitz in February, said the tip that turned the case came early this month.
"Obviously he thought he could go to India and blend in," Leiberman said.
Associated Press - May 23, 2007
CHENNAI, India (AP) - An American rabbi convicted of sexually abusing children has been arrested in southern India after nearly a year on the run across Asia.
Police in India say Alan Jay Horowitz was arrested at a seaside resort (Mahabalipuram) in a town in the southern state of Tamil Nadu. A senior police official say the arrest came after a tip was received from Interpol.
US authorities are expected to soon begin extradition proceedings for Horowitz, who was wanted for violating his parole in New York state by leaving the United States.
The 60-year-old Horowitz is an ordained orthodox rabbi and a child psychiatrist. He was convicted by a New York court in 1991 of sexually abusing children aged ten to 17 and spent 15 years in prison before being paroled in November 2004.
He left the United States in the spring of 2006 and reportedly visited a number of spots in Asia, including Thailand and Hong Kong, before arriving in India.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE CONTACT:
July 08, 2007
Deputy U.S. Marshals Gary Mattison (518) 365-969;
U.S. State Department Bureau of Diplomatic Security (571) 345-2509;
U.S. Marshals Office of Public Affairs (202) 307-9065
CHILD MOLESTING RABBI ALAN HOROWITZ FINALLY BACK IN THE U.S. TO ANSWER TO JUSTICE
Washington, DC -- At approximately 4 a.m. today, convicted child molester Rabbi Alan Horowitz of New York state was brought back to the U.S. to finally answer for his unspeakable crimes against children. Horowitz was flown into Newark New Jersey International Airport and was met by the U.S. Marshals and other law enforcement agencies.
Led by the U.S. Marshals and the State Department's Bureau of Diplomatic Security, the investigative efforts into the whereabouts of Horowitz came to an end when he was arrested on May 22 at a seaside resort in southern India. He had been sitting in a foreign jail cell awaiting deportation until now.
Horowitz, an ordained Orthodox Rabbi and ivy league-educated child psychologist, was convicted of 34 counts of child molestation in Schenectady County, New York. He may have imported illegal materials into the prison where he was serving time – extending his sentence, and previously he had been convicted of "perverted sexual practices" in Maryland. During the
1980s, while living in Israel, police launched an investigation into charges that Horowitz was sexually abusing some of his second wife's children. He fled back to the United States. Even earlier in his life, he faced a similar investigation while living in North Carolina.
Most recently, he fled New York state parole in 2006, but continued to use internet communications while hiding in India. "To locate him we used a network of tipsters and some of the most extensive electronic surveillance techniques we've ever employed," said Deputy U.S. Marshal Gary Mattison (Northern District of New York). Mattison was the case Deputy assigned to work alongside New York authorities.
When it came time for the actual arrest, special agents of the State Department stepped in. "Diplomatic Security's regional offices in India maintain an excellent working relationship with local law enforcement," said Greg Starr, Director of State Department's Diplomatic Security Service. "That type of close, worldwide capability gave us an unparalleled ability to help apprehend this fugitive." Horowitz was on the run from authorities for 11-months in a global manhunt. He was arrested by local police in Mahabalipuram, India. Authorities now are determining the most effective approach for returning him to law enforcement in the U.S. Last year, U.S. Marshals completed almost 500 fugitive extraditions and deportations. The federal charge against Horowitz, "unlawful flight to avoid prosecution," was based on state parole violation warrants related to his 13-year imprisonment for sexual molestation of minors.
Serial child molester sentenced to 150 years
Updated 1/29/2007 5:53 PM ETSAN JOSE, Calif. (AP) — A man prosecutors said was one of the nation's most prolific child molesters was sentenced Monday to 150 years in prison for abusing two 12-year-old boys.
Dean Arthur Schwartzmiller, 64, who also had been convicted of sexual assaults in several states over three decades, was sentenced to the maximum term on 11 felony counts of child molestation and one misdemeanor charge of child pornography possession.
Schwartzmiller represented himself during his trial last year but asked for an attorney to represent him during the sentencing phase.
During the nearly three-week trial, prosecutor Steve Fein showed jurors a map of the "places and decades where the defendant has molested young boys." It included an estimated 100 accusers dating to 1969 in eight U.S. states, Mexico and Brazil.
When Schwartzmiller was arrested in June 2005, investigators found a memoir describing abuse, binders full of child pornography and 1,500 notebook pages with headings including "blond boys," "no, but yes boys," and "best of the best, 13 and under."
Schwartzmiller, who acted as his own attorney during his October trial, told jurors that he was innocent and maligned by a society that doesn't accept men who love boys.
During his testimony, Schwartzmiller said the memoir and notebook entries were fiction.
He blamed roommate Frederick Everts — also a convicted child molester — for the child porn. Schwartzmiller also said he could not have molested the two San Jose boys, who are cousins, because he was either at a construction job or bedridden with a bad back at the time.
Although police say Schwartzmiller appears to have spent much of the past three decades years in California, he has also been arrested on child molestation charges in New York, Idaho, Oregon, Arkansas and Washington. He has lived in Nevada, Texas and Washington.
Schwartzmiller has used aliases including Dean Harmon and Dean Miller, authorities said. He apparently gained the trust of victims and parents by working as a home renovation contractor. He didn't register as a sex offender so he did not appear in the "Megan's Law" databases in California or other states, police said.
Police said Schwartzmiller befriended the two San Jose boys with gifts, invited them to his house for video games and movies, and molested them.
Judge Edward Lee said that despite Schwartzmiller's legal savvy in getting some previous charges dismissed, he will spend the rest of his days filing appeals from a prison cell.
"For all that above-average intelligence and charm, I have a couple of faults (with you) — an English teacher might call them tragic faults," Lee said. "You have no empathy for your victims; that's not particularly unusual. And you cannot see yourself as others see you."
Case of Rabbi David Alan Stein
(AKA: David Stein, David A. Stein)
B.A. in Sociology - University of California, San Diego
Master of Hebrew Letters, M.A. in Rabbinic Studies
Rabbinic Ordination - Ziegler School of Rabbinic Studies
Former Dean of Jewish Life / Campus Rabbi - American Hebrew Academy, Greensboro, NC
Insurance Company - San Clemente, CA
If you or anyone you know was sexually abused by Rabbi David A.Stern contact the North Carolina Coaltion Against Sexual Assault: 919-870-8881 or Toll Free: 888-737-CASA (2272). Or The Awareness Center 443-857-5560.
The administration at American Hebrew Academy deserves an award for doing all the right things in the handling this case. Rabbi David Stein is a member of the Rabbinical Assembly (Conservative). He was charged with eight counts of having sex with a student. The alleged sex acts occurred on campus during the 2006-07 school year. The student was a 16-year-old male.
Rabbi Stern was a frequent speaker at Beth David Synagogue also in Greensboro, North Carolina.
By Jennifer Fernandez
Wednesday, Oct. 17, 2007
GREENSBORO — The American Hebrew Academy's former director of campus life is facing charges that he had sex with a student, police said.
Rabbi David Alan Stein, 35, is expected to turn himself in today, Greensboro police Sgt. A.T. McHenry said.
Stein left the school in the spring, shortly after police began their investigation, police Capt. Gary Hastings said.
Since then, Stein has been in San Clemente, Calif., living with his parents and working at an insurance company, McHenry said.
Stein is charged with eight counts of having sex with a student, McHenry said.
Police spent months investigating the complaint, seizing school computers to examine them for evidence, Hastings said. The order for Stein's arrest was issued last week, he said.
The incidents took place sometime during the 2006-07 school year on campus, Hastings said.
The student involved is a 16-year-old male, Hastings said. He did not know if the student was still enrolled at the school.
School officials alerted police after a student came forward with a complaint, Glenn Drew, executive director of the American Hebrew Academy, said Tuesday afternoon in a prepared statement. He said Stein was fired.
It was unclear Tuesday how long Stein had been working at the school.
"This has been a painful incident for the Academy community," Drew said, "but we remain committed to protecting our students and serving justice."
The co-ed boarding school serves 135 high school students and employs 80, school officials said.
Students come from all over the world to attend the Academy, which combines college preparatory and Jewish studies.
The school sits on a 100-acre wooded campus off Hobbs Road in northwest Guilford County.
McHenry would not comment on whether more students were involved or if further charges are pending. Hastings said the investigation is continuing.
"Of course," McHenry said about the student's family, "they want justice done."
Contact Jennifer Fernandez at 373-7064 or firstname.lastname@example.org
==============================================================June 25, 2007
Nogales, Ariz. - Jay Gillilland, a former U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officer, has been sentenced to 6,242 years in jail for sexually exploiting his young daughter over the course of two years.
Gillilland was arrested on drug charges in 2004 when police officers discovered child pornography on his home computer while executing a search warrant. During a subsequent search of a storage locker Gillilland had rented in Nogales, officers discovered more than two hours of videotape depicting him sexually abusing his daughter, who was between six and eight years old at the time.
Agents with U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) were brought in to consult on the case by the Office of the Inspector General because of their expertise in child pornography. Nogales agents coordinated with the Santa Cruz County Criminal Investigative Division to set up the computer forensic examination, retrieved evidence of molestation and certified the videos through the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children.
"I am glad that my agents were able to help make sure this monster will be imprisoned for the rest of his life," said Special Agent in Charge Alonzo Peña, head of the ICE Office of Investigation in Arizona. "Nothing makes me prouder than protecting children from these predators."
In March, a jury found Gillilland guilty of 317 counts of molestation of a child, sexual conduct with a minor, sexual exploitation of a minor and child abuse. Santa Cruz County Superior Court Judge James Soto sentenced Gillilland to 174 consecutive sentences of 35 years to life on the sexual conduct charges.
ICE welcomes the assistance of the public in catching child predators. Members of the public wishing to report suspicious activity may contact ICE at 1-866-347-2423 or Operation.Predator@dhs.gov. Additionally, the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children, an ICE partner on Operation Predator, can be contacted at 1-800-843-5678 or http://www.ice.gov/exec/leaving.asp?http://www.cybertipline.com
Feds Nail Another Top Tenner
The fall of this top tenner began in mid-April 2007 when a friend of Goldberg's received a call from the fugitive himself. The friend instantly alerted the authorities, telling them that Goldberg was hiding out in Montreal. Unfortunately, that's all the information they had.
Then, on May 11th, an anonymous tipster in Montreal heard an interesting story from a friend. That friend worked as a non-profit counselor who had a very intriguing client. That client, who went by the name Terry Wayne Kearns, admitted that he was a fugitive from justice from the United States but said the charges against him were trumped up.
The counselor told the friend who went to the internet for more information. She logged on the the FBI's website and found who she thought Terry Wayne Kearns really was: Richard Goldberg. The tipster told the counselor of her findings and the next time the counselor met with Kearns, the question was posed: "Are you Richard Goldberg?" Kearns said he was.
This tipster alerted the authorities who knew, based on earlier information, that this tip sounded strong. The FBI agent in Ottawa contacted Interpol Ottowa, as well as the Montreal Police SWAT team and the Canadian Border Services Agency to descend on Richard Goldberg. At 1 a.m. EST, authorities found Goldberg who readily admitted his true identity. Fingerprints later confirmed that they had, in fact, nabbed the FBI top tenner.
At his sentencing, Goldberg bowed his head and said, "I never did anything to be mean to anyone." In a written letter to the court, he says it was the children he preyed on who who set him up.
U.S. District Judge John Walter said Goldberg is a "deeply disturbed individual" with a "lack of remorse beyond belief."
He'll serve the next two decades behind bars.
Alleged child molester could face 99 years in prison
by Channel 2 News Staff
Wednesday, Dec. 19, 2007
ANCHORAGE, Alaska -- A 62-year-old man accused of molesting a young child could face up to 99 years in prison if he's found guilty.
Victor Oustigoff was arraigned Wednesday afternoon at the Anchorage Jail. He's charged with the sexual abuse of a 3 year-old last month.
Anchorage Police say after questioning Oustigoff, they now suspect him of sexually abusing five other children, all girls between the ages of two and nine between 2003 and 2007.
Detectives are looking into several other cases where Oustigoff may be involved.
Crestview man gets 70 years for child molestation
Michael Dale Gray, 32, was convicted Nov. 16 after a jury heard charges that he “routinely took the little girl into his bedroom, sexually battered and molested her while another child was in another room,” according to the release.
He threatened to kill himself in front of her if she told anyone, the release states.
Investigators also said Gray used routine excessive physical force to punish both the girl and the young boy. Lawmen say the abuse began in 2004 when the girl was 10 and continued in 2006 after she turned 12.
Gray was charged with sexual battery on a victim 12 years or older and lewd or lascivious molestation on a victim less than 12 years old. Both crimes are first-degree felonies. He also faced two counts of child abuse without great bodily harm, a third-degree felony.
The Okaloosa County Sheriff ’s Office and Department of Children and Families investigated the case.
Catholics raise millions to settle abuse cases
By John Stucke
Eastern Washington's Catholic community has raised most of the money needed to settle clergy childhood sex-abuse cases, surpassing expectations and ensuring that the diocese will emerge from bankruptcy.
"This could have been very divisive," said Robert Hailey, of the Association of Parishes. "But in the end this was a fundraiser that brought people together. We're overwhelmed by their generosity."
Parishes have collected $8 million of the $10 million pledged.
The money is helping to pay for the overall $48 million settlement needed to end the bankruptcy of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Spokane. The rest comes from the sale of diocese property and insurance payments, among other sources.
The campaign is unlike any in Spokane history, and it stands alone in the United States as the only bankruptcy or legal settlement that collected cash from the pockets of parishioners. In other diocese settlements around the country, the money came from investment funds or other financial means without depending on new money from the pews.
Hailey said donations came from every corner of the diocese, which includes 82 parishes in 13 counties.
"We were getting $100, $500 and $1,000 at a time from people at all parishes," he said. "It was truly made possible by the gifts of many."
The parishes were able to borrow the remaining $2 million from Spokane-based AmericanWest Bank. The loan is a five-year note at 7.15 percent interest. More than a dozen parishes signed promissory notes to secure the loan.
The successful campaign also enables the independent trust established to receive the money to finish disbursing payments to victims early — in February instead of October 2009, according to court records filed Friday afternoon.
Diocese attorney Shaun Cross said it was hoped "the timely payment of the victims' claims will provide at least some measure of finality for them and the beginning of healing for everyone involved,"
There were 176 people who filed sex-abuse claims against the diocese. About 36 settled their cases. The remaining 140 agreed to participate in a claim-handling apparatus that attempted to discern the truth of the claims and assign each a cash value.
While the framework of this claims matrix was public, its findings are being kept secret, including how many of the 140 claims were found to have merit and the severity of the sexual abuse.
The diocese has so far publicly acknowledged the names of 28 clergy who admitted or have been credibly accused of pedophilia. Of those, 17 are deceased.
On its Web site, the diocese lists 10 who were diocesan priests; 14 Jesuits; two Franciscan clergy; one Benedictine clergy; and one Marianist clergy. The settlement calls for the names of other suspected priests to remain confidential unless the victim asks for the name to be made public.
Cross said the settlement would erase any remaining legal liabilities of the diocese, including 19 lawsuits that had been suspended during the bankruptcy, filed in December 2004.
The only remaining issue is future claims of sex abuse against clergy, which may be made by adult victims able to show they lacked the mental acuity to file a bankruptcy claim in a timely manner, or by sexually abused children who have not yet reported incidents.
Victims may continue to press lawsuits against the individual priests and Catholic organizations — including the Jesuits.
For the diocese, full funding of the settlement should end years of tumult.
"The fact the diocese and parishes have fully performed all of their obligations under the plan is a tribute to all the hard work and tremendous sacrifice of literally thousands of individuals," Cross said.
Parish contributions exceeded the expectations of professional fundraisers who feared parishioners would balk, sickened by the sex-abuse scandal and outraged by the approximately $8 million in legal fees.
In the end, Cross said, it was a grassroots effort run by parishioners and priests.
"People came together because we needed to do it," Hailey said. "The message we took to the people was this: We must make the sacrifice for someone else's wrongs. God's idea of fairness is not always the same as yours and mine."
Former L.A. priest pleads guilty to sexual abuse of boys
Michael Stephen Baker, 60, was sentenced as part of a plea deal entered in Los Angeles Superior Court.
The announcement of the agreement came on the same day the archdiocese paid a large share of the $660 million it has agreed to provide to settle cases with more than 500 alleged victims of clergy abuse.
About $500 million was wired to victims as part of the largest payout by any diocese since the scandal emerged in Boston in 2002, said Ray Boucher, the lead attorney for the plaintiffs.
Baker is considered by some to be a symbol of the archdiocese's reluctance to deal with problem priests.
“The sentence they're going to give him is a pittance compared to the destruction that he has created,” Boucher said.
Baker was charged in 2002 with 34 counts of molestation involving six victims, but those charges were dismissed a year later after the U.S. Supreme Court voided a California law that allowed the prosecution of cases involving acts that occurred before 1988.
Baker's plea involved the sexual abuse of two boys between 1994 and 1998, when he was a priest in Los Angeles. One of the victims was an altar boy, and some of the incidents occurred in rectories.
Neither victim was in the courtroom. But with the former priest sitting at the defense table wearing an orange jail jumpsuit, a half-dozen people came forward to tell the judge that Baker abused them or a family member.
There were similar elements in several of their stories, with the incidents leading to drug and alcohol use, depression and sometimes thoughts of suicide.
Matt Severson, whom authorities said was one of Baker's early victims, recalled being 9 when he first met “Father Mike.” Baker was a family friend, and tickling by the priest eventually turned to fondling and within a year to kissing and oral sex, Severson, now 40, said in court.
“I felt trapped in an alternate universe between fear and silence,” he said.
According to the archdiocese, Baker had told Cardinal Roger Mahony in 1986 that he had molested young boys from 1978 to 1985. Mahony did not notify police but sent Baker to a residential facility that treated priests for sexual abuse problems.
In the years that followed, Baker was assigned to nine different parishes but barred from having one-on-one contact with minors. He violated those restrictions three times, according to church personnel file summaries that the archdiocese has released.
Mahony removed Baker from the ministry in 2000. In January 2006, Baker was arrested at Los Angeles International Airport as he returned from a vacation in Thailand.
Authorities said outside court that the investigation into clergy abuse was ongoing.
“We are not done,” said Bill Hodgeman, an investigator with the district attorney's office. “We will go where the competent evidence takes us.”