Sunday, January 25, 2009
New York Magazine - May 15, 2006
........“I too was molested by Rabbi Kolko,” he wrote, “both while a student in 7th and 8th grades and during those same summers whilst a camper in Camp Agudah. . . . He would insert his hands down the front of my pants and would begin to ‘search around,’ to say the least. At the same time he would pull me closer to himself, or would push himself forward against myself, sometimes even pushing me into the steering wheel, to the point that it hurt. Unfortunately I didn’t react or complain. I of course told my parents and tried on several times to explain to them what I was going through, but they didn’t want to believe me and my ‘stories,’ etc. So I just shut up and let the molestation and perversion continue. . . . I feel that it is about time that the wall of silence be torn down.”
A few months later, after getting dozens of similar comments and e-mails, UOJ listed Jeffrey Herman’s name and phone number. He says he hadn’t spoken with Herman—he’d just noticed him as a guest on The O’Reilly Factor, talking about a clergy sex-abuse case, and thought that anyone reading his site who wanted confidentiality might consider calling him. “The key for me,” UOJ says, “was that on his Website, Herman said that he had strategies for getting around the statute of limitations.”
UOJ posted Herman’s name and number. When Herman, in turn, sent an e-mail saying he’d be happy to speak with alleged victims confidentially, Framowitz saw the posting and called him. Herman, an observant Jew from Miami, has handled millions of dollars in sex-abuse claims against clergy and school systems, mainly against the Catholic Church. He says he was interested in working on Jewish cases for the same reasons he works on Catholic ones. “People say, ‘Oh, are you gonna go after a rabbi?’ ” he says. “That’s kind of a funny question to me. I see the kind of work I’m doing as protecting kids. Jewish kids are certainly as worth protecting as Catholic kids.”
On February 2, UOJ paid for a bulk mailing to Orthodox homes in Borough Park, Flatbush, Williamsburg, and Crown Heights that might be too observant to have access to the Internet. The mailing accused Kolko of molestation and Margulies of a cover-up and even included their phone numbers. That’s when UOJ says he started receiving threats—“We’re gonna get your family” and “We know who you are.” (Many of these e-mails have been forwarded to Herman.) People accused him of betraying his community and having an ax to grind against Kolko and Margulies. The Jewish Press ran an editorial blasting the mailing. A rival blog called End UOJ was created. But the most shocking responses came from those who believed that accusing Kolko of abuse—true or not—was worse than the abuse itself. “Certainly speaking evil of somebody, truth or otherwise, establishes the most severe of all wrongdoings,” one pseudonymous comment on UOJ reads—“far, far worse then [sic] ‘child sexual abuse,’ and the punishment far more severe.” The post goes on to claim that having sex with a child is punishable by 39 lashings “at the most,” whereas lashon hara is punishable by leprosy—“a far worse penalty.”
Now that there’s a lawsuit, UOJ feels vindicated. “Molestation is rampant,” he says. “It’s not a one-in-a-million case. There’s at least one in every school. And I’m going to go after them one at a time."..........
Teen sex rap for principal of Bensonhurst private school
BY SIMONE WEICHSELBAUM
DAILY NEWS POLICE BUREAU
Monday, January 26th 2009, 12:46 AM
Two teenage boys told cops they endured years of sexual abuse at the hands of a Brooklyn high school principal who was arrested over the weekend, police said.
Emanuel Yegutkin, 30, was suspended Sunday from Elite High School, a private Jewish school in Bensonhurst with mainly Russian-American students.
Yegutkin forced a 17-year-old into lewd sex acts from the age of 7 to 14, cops said.
He subjected a 19-year-old to five years of fondling, beginning when the teen was 12, police said.
Neither child attended Elite, school officials said.
"This has nothing to do with the school," said Elite High School Headmaster Tzvi Koff. "But we have to protect our students. He no longer has access to the school building and he is not part of our institution anymore."
The disgraced educator - who also worked in upstate Gilboa as a lifeguard at Oorah summer camp last year - was charged with endangering the welfare of a child and sexually abusing children for more than a four-month period, according to a spokesman for the Brooklyn district attorney's office.
A message left at Yegutkin's Ocean Parkway home was not returned.
Oorah Camp Director Elisha Lewenstein said Yegutkin came highly recommended.
"We investigated him before we hired him and never had a complaint," Lewenstein said.
Yegutkin, a one-time rising star within the Orthodox Jewish community, lost a second prominent job yesterday: volunteer medic for the Flatbush Hatzoloh ambulance service.
"If anybody in Hatzoloh is accused of any criminal issue, we suspend them until the issue is cleared up," Hatzoloh spokesman Heshey Jacob said.
Yegutkin "suspended himself" when he was contacted yesterday, Jacob said.
Yegutkin's arrest is the latest blow to Brooklyn's Orthodox Jewish community. Since October, at least four Orthodox Jewish men in the borough have been charged with sexually abusing children.
Emanuel Yegutkin was also employed at Oorah's summer camp as a lifeguard!
Via E-Mail From Eliyohu Mintz Of Oorah.
We are shocked and saddened by the unfortunate news about Emanuel Yegutkin, who was an employee of Oorah’s Boy Zone for the past two summers. During the time that Mr. Yegutkin worked at Boy Zone we received no reports of improper behavior or anything that would have raised even the slightest concern. We have not been informed by law enforcement officers of specific details or heard of allegations of any incidents in Boy Zone.
However, we take this matter extremely seriously and have offered our full cooperation to the authorities in their investigation of this matter. We wish to reiterate our zero tolerance policy with respect to behavior that may endanger children. Our first concern is, and always be, the safety of the children entrusted to our care.
Statement Issued by Elisha Lewenstein, Camp Director of Oorah
Lakewood, NJ, January 26, 2009-- Following is a statement issued by Elisha Lewenstein, camp director of Oorah, Inc., regarding news about one of its former volunteers:
"We are shocked and saddened to hear about the allegations involving Mr.Emanuel Yegutkin, who was one of 400 volunteer staffers at our Upstate New York camp. Our primary concern has always been, and remains, the safety and well being of the children entrusted to our care.
"Oorah has a zero tolerance policy when it comes to any improper or illegal behavior by staff. That is the way we have run our camp since it opened and that is the policy we will continue to abide by in the future.
"None of our children ever complained about the conduct of Mr. Yegutkin and we have no reason to believe that Mr. Yegutkin did anything improper while at our camp. Obviously, we hope that this remains to be the case through the course of the police investigation. "We will continue to fully cooperate with law enforcement officials in their investigation.
"Since this is an ongoing investigation, we will reserve further comment until more facts about this case become available from law enforcement officials.