Yeshiva University rabbi warns sex abuse reports put innocent Jews in prison

The faculty member of the prestigious Jewish institution said rumors could lead to Jews being jailed with 'a shvartze,' an African-American, who might kill.

Illustration: A prison.
Illustration: A prison. / Photo by Reuters
By The Forward
Published 02:08 20.03.13

A top rabbinic dean of Yeshiva University has warned rabbis about the dangers of reporting child sex abuse allegations to the police because it could result in a Jew being jailed with a black inmate, or as he put it, “a shvartze,” who might want to kill him.

Rabbi Hershel Schachter, one of the most respected faculty members of the Rabbi Isaac Elchanan Theological Seminary, also said that children can lie and ruin an innocent man’s life.

“It could be that the whole thing is a bubbe-mayse [tall tale],” Schachter said.

Schachter said Jewish communities should establish panels of rabbis who are also psychologists to first hear such allegations and decide if law authorities should be informed.

Schachter, whose taped remarks were posted on the Failed Messiah website, said a student at Yeshiva University’s high school in Manhattan confided in him years ago that he had been abused.

Read the rest of this article on the Forward.