New York – Yeshiva University To Be Sued By Abuse Victim; Lawyer Says Claim Not Barred By Statute of Limitations

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    File photo of Attorney Kevin Mulhearn (credit Alexandra Wren)New York – As the fallout continues from the investigative series published in the Forward newspaper (http://bit.ly/UQPF4e) alleging sexual misconduct on the part of two Yeshiva University staff members, one victim, Mordechai Twersky, has retained attorney Kevin Mulhearn to represent him in a lawsuit against YU.

    Mulhearn is best known for winning a sex abuse lawsuit on behalf of 12 men who said they were sexually abused decades ago by the football coach at Brooklyn’s Poly Prep Country Day School.

    Since the Forward began their coverage (http://bit.ly/UmQnqd) of YU’s alleged sex abuse scandal, over 20 men have come forward to say they, too, were abused by either Rabbi George Finkelstein or Rabbi Macy Gordon between the years 1968 and 1995 at Yeshiva University High School for Boys in Manhattan.

    Mulhearn is hopeful that other victims will follow Twersky’s lead and come forward to join the suit. “I think there is a substantial benefit in consolidating these claims as much as possible,” he said.

    In New York State, victims of child sexual abuse are barred from bringing a claim past the age of 23 owing to the statute of limitations. However, Mulhearn explained that just as with the Poly Prep case he successfully won, the argument can be made that YU knew or became aware of the abuse allegations and took measures to hide them. As such, though the alleged victims are now in their 40s and 50s, they are not barred by the statute of limitations.

    “I can assure you from looking at this issue very carefully over several years, the statute of limitations is not an impenetrable monolith,” Mulhearn said.

    YU has since retained the law firm of Sullivan & Cromwell to investigate the allegations. The university has also hired Lisa Friel, the former head of the sex crimes division at the New York City district attorney’s office. Both Friel and attorneys from Sullivan & Cromwell have started calling alleged victims. Mulhearn cautioned all potential victims to only speak with YU’s lawyers in the presence of their own attorney.

    Twersky said that he has received an outpouring of both support and condemnation since the Forward story first broke. He said many of the e-mails he receives are from other YU abuse victims who have seen their lives destroyed – including divorces, drug and alcohol addictions and repeated thoughts of suicide – all as a result of the abuse they endured during their high school years.

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    16 COMMENTS

    1. This is the tip of the iceberg and will extend into our communities also, but I think it’s a good thing. Let’s get them all to court and see what a jury says.

      • Why are Williamsburg people always so self-centered? It is not all about you! Can’t you see it is in the news and in fact that it is a fuss? Besides, what are you doing on the internet, weren’t you at the Kinus this year?
        P.S. 35 years ago an old woman was robbed and killed by a priest and I can’t seem to find it anywhere in the newspaper. You know why? Because look up the definition for “NEWS”

      • There was a huge article in the Times a coup[le of days after the story hit. The Post picked it up. It definitely was covered in the general media.

      • i think if it was your son who was sexually abused by a rabbi and had it covered up for say 30 years you would have a different perspective..
        but i guess you are not low to make a buck

        what if anything should these men who were abused as teenagers do now in your high opinion mr annonymous?

      • Disgusting and ignorant comment. Do you think they are doing it for the money, or they want justice? They cannot do it criminally because of this unbelievable statute of limitations that we have in this state; therefore, they have to sue civilly. Get it? Oh, and the money can help them pay for therapy to make sense of their unimaginable pain. Why do they have to suffer and pay for therapy too? Are they supposed to get only the end of the stick and the molesters and enablers can continue living a carefree life? Why? Because you don’t want to hear that in your community there are our own brothers and sisters suffering? Because you will allow others to suffer in silence to protect your image?

    2. “i wonder what these two accusers do for a living?i know times are bad but how low can you go to make a buck?”

      Two accusers?? So far, ten men are going to testify! Are all ten lying? I think not since they have the same stories and had also gone to the authorities many years ago with the same stories. If so far, there are ten who are willing to testify, I assume there are many more. One pedophile can abuse hundreds and hundreds of victims.

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