Weinberger Conceded His Guilt and Promised to Quit the Rabbinate in December

Rabbi Dovid Weinberger

Rabbi Dovid Weinberger

In September of 2013, Rabbi Dovid Weinberger announced a one year sabbatical leave from his position as Rabbi of Shaaray Tefila in Lawrence, New York. He attributed it to health problems:

My physicians have strongly advised that I take a one year sabbatical in keeping with the torah mandate of “ushmartem es nafshoseichem” (“you should guard your health”). I am confident that this much-needed break will be beneficial in being able to give me the capacity, with Hashem’s help, to serve the klal (public) for many more years in good health.

The letter is ambiguous about which public he would serve. In fact, his understanding with the board was that he was going to get a paid year of sabbatical and that he would not be coming back to Shaaray Tefila. But they did allow him to face save face and they expected him to relocate.

Some would praise them for ridding the shul of a predator while others, myself included are critical because they were allowing him to relocate and prey on girls and women in other communities.

As word of his misdeeds spread, he began to minimize his misconduct and blame his accusers. This led to a confrontation between him and group of local rabbis on December 18, 2013 where they threatened to expose his misconduct unless he agreed to permanently give up any role as a rabbi or educator. He was confronted with the evidence, including an incriminating recording of very serious sexual misconduct. Rather than face more evidence, he stopped protesting and signed the following statement:

To whom it may concern, I Rabbi Dovid Weinberger, formerly the Rabbi of Cong. Shaarei Tefilla of Lawrence, NY, do hereby acknowledge that I will retire from the Rabbinate effective immediately, and will never again serve in the capacity of Rov or Rabbi of any congregation or community, nor will I ever again be involved as a mechanech [teacher] in any venue of Chinuch [education].

Witnesses to this declaration included: Rabbis Yaakov Bender, Moshe Brown, Aaron Brafman, Eitan Feiner, Binyomin Forst, Naftali Jaeger, and Yechiel Perr.

Some readers will quibble and say he did not admit anything. Let’s get real! Nobody agrees to give up his lifelong career at the height of his success unless he has really been caught and would rather give it up than be exposed.

Even at this late date, Weinberger could have kept his misdeeds from the public but he then attempted to back out of his signed promise and get back into the rabbinate. This forced the hand of local rabbis. They then issued a statement around early February 2014.

Recently, RDW [Rabbi Dovid Weinberger], a rabbi, resigned from his position as a rabbi of a congregation [Shaaray Tefila, Lawrence, NY], educator of young women in our community, and counselor to many who sought his advice. Following that, we learned from professionals of a number of documented cases of his unfortunate and unacceptable behavior. It is the collective judgment of these professionals that this behavior may continue. We therefore feel obligated to inform our community of this concern and advise that there be no interaction with this rabbi in any rabbinic, educational, counseling or private setting.

(click on links below to see copies of documents )

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101 thoughts on “Weinberger Conceded His Guilt and Promised to Quit the Rabbinate in December

  1. rabbi bender is on this letter so why did he go to belsky according to some? furthermore you are saying that all this information was hidden from belsky ?

    • You are asking me why R. Bender went to Belsky. However, I do not believe he did. As I said before, it was R. Ginzberg who solicited the Belsky letter and then spread it. However the above signed statement does explain the anger of local rabbis at Belsky for claiming that they did not give Rabbi Weinberger a chance to defend himself. As Belsky knew, or would have known if he spoke to any of the rabbis who denounced Weinberger, they gave him a chance to defend himself and he preferred resigning the rabbinate to facing all the evidence in front of them. So Belsky was either being willfully ignorant or deliberately dishonest when he attacked the local rabbis for not giving Weinberger a fair chance. The 5T/FR rabbis were being kind when they said he was misinformed or misled. I believe that deep down they feel that he lied.

    • Because Weinberger tried to get back into rabbanus and pressed to protest his innocence. The rabbis then acted to pre-empt that possibility by publicly denouncing him. He countered with the Belsky letter which was an attack on the rabbis in the area. They countered by blocking Torah Vodaath fund raising. He had a good deal going when they let him quit quietly and try his luck elsewhere.

  2. Anyone who has been following this story knows that, the more Dovid Weinberger tries to cover things up, the more hot water he gets himself into.

    Weinberger is doubly at fault for the public humiliation that he and his family are going through and for his disgraced legacy: first, for the unspeakable acts that he committed with members of the opposite sex, and second, for not having the Seichel to know when the game was up and to step down with his dignity (at least somewhat) intact.

  3. “Some would praise them for ridding the shul of a predator while others, myself included are critical because they were allowing him to relocate and prey on girls and women in other communities.”

    Yerachmiel, to be fair, the numerous Rabbanim who were working behind the scenes had no intention of letting Weinberger ever again serve in any position of Rabbanus or Chinuch anywhere on the planet. And, without any such position, he would be a lot less likely to prey on girls and women. But you’re right: letting him relocate, even without a position, was not without risk. Fortunately, Weinberger solved the problem by making one tactical error after another, each time causing the matter to become more public.

  4. Extreme insiders are saying Bender did go to Belsky and not Ginzburg. There are money people behind Weinberg telling him to come back and help re-establish a shul and money people behing Bender telling him to get Belsky involved.

    • It WAS bender who went to rabbi belsky. I heard from a source INSIDE Torah vodaas that it was bender. Why are you covering for him yerachmiel? You yourself had originally posted that he was the one, and then you took that off of the post. Did one of benders goons contact you to remove it? I thought the whole point of this blog is to fight against that type of corruption. There are credible sources who confirm as such and you deliberately avoid making him.

      • I am a tzadik until I don’t agree with you and then I am either corrupt or a toady of goons. I call it as I see it. I mentioned Bender because several people mentioned him along with Ginzberg. I am now sure it was Ginzberg. Moreover, it is clear that Bender was one of the seven rabbonim who got Dovid Weinberger to sign on to quitting the rabbinate. I suppose it is possible that he reversed course but it does not seem likely to me. If I get credible and confirmed information that Bender joined Ginzberg in distributing Belsky’s letter, I will say it. Trying to bully or insult me will not get me to do anything except make me suspicious of you as a source of information.

      • Regarding my statement above that “Weinberger is doubly at fault for the public humiliation that he and his family are going through and for his disgraced legacy,” I would add that, for the same reasons , he is doubly at fault (and the ONLY one at fault) for the indescribable Chillul Hashem that he caused.

        Incredibly, I heard from two different sources that Weinberger naively thought, after being confronted with all the evidence against him (but before the Board of Shaaray found out), that the only way to AVOID a Chillul Hashem was to stay in Rabbanus and pretend nothing happened. This dubious strategy backfired badly when he was forced to go on “a medical leave” right before Rosh Hashanah.

      • Your children have difficulty digesting today’s rabbonim?

        That’s why most of us feed rabbonim to our children. Many of today’s rabbonim just don’t have much fiber and can leave you feeling like you just filled up with hot air. Many leave a sour taste in people’s mouths. Others have a very artificial flavor to them. Others are obviously high in fat.

        No, children should not be force to digest rabbonim.

        On the other hand, it would be nice if NCSY, the Agudah and certainly members of the moetzes stopped feeding our children to the molesters.

  5. “others, myself included are critical because they were allowing him to relocate and prey on girls and women in other communities.”

    Whether he relocated or not, he would live among girls and women either in his existing community or his new community.

    There’s no way around that.

    • Yes, he is free to live where he wants, as long as he is not charged criminally. As this point I am not aware of anyone inclined to press charges. However, if the public is warned, he loses the credibility that facilitates his misdeeds.

  6. Questions:

    Why did Ginzberg go to Belsky? What’s in it for Ginzberg? Or is he just friends with Weinberger?

    Why did Belsky issue his letter? What’s in it for him? Or is he ALSO just friends with Weinberger?

    • Ginzberg is from a talmid muvchak of R. Pinchos Scheinberg. Weinberger is married to the granddaughter of Pinchos Shceinberg. Belsky’s connection to Pinchos Scheinberg goes back to cooperating Yehudah Kolko against allegations of sexually abusing boys, (allegations which were later confirmed when Kolko pleaded guilty). I am not aware of any personal friendship between Belsky and Weinberger.

      • If Ginzberg learned anywhere it was in Chofetz Chaim, not Torah Or, not that I am aware of anyone in CC boasting about it. His brother also didn’t up in a position within CC even though they are a CC family. (His brother does have a much longer, whiter and frum looking beard though. AZ always looked dark and shady.)

        He used to be Isaac Gross’s shik yingel.

        He seems to have moved on to a lower calling.

  7. Understandably, many people may be disillusioned by the Weinberger saga. It’s important to remember, however, that there are many wonderful Rabbanim out there who are steeped in Torah and Yiras Shamayim, and are not only concerned with their external image to the exclusion of everything else. I know quite a number of them.

    Dovid Weinberger in no way represents Rabbanim, the Torah, the Ribbono Shel Olam, nor, for that matter, sincere, decent human beings (whether Jewish or not).

    • +++Dovid Weinberger in no way represents Rabbanim, the Torah, the Ribbono Shel Olam, nor, for that matter, sincere, decent human beings (whether Jewish or not).+++

      Well, for 20 years he represented that for an entire shul. He spoke at their closest relative’s levayas, he was mesader kiddushin at their or their children’s weddings, he answered shaylos day and night, many of those shaylos were grey areas which could not be looked up in in Mishnah Brurah or in an ArtScroll but which needed him to come to an opinion based on his own judgment (which was clearly obscured), he gave spiritual guidance to thousands of people, and he represented “Rabbanim, the Torah, and the Ribbono Shel Olam” for not only the 20 years he was Rov of Shaaray Tefila, but for all the many years before that when he taught halacha classes and was an assistant Rov in the White Shul.

      What you seem to not be understanding and realizing is that were it not for one or two women who were able to slyly record his “blatant sexual misconduct,” or if recording devices were not as technologically advanced as they are today, then Dovid Weinberger would STILL be representing “Rabbanim, the Torah, and the Ribbono Shel Olam” for those hundreds and thousands of people.

      How do you think the girls and women to whom he taught halacha classes think about those halachos now? Some of them are wondering how our Torah works exactly, giving men (and not women, but that’s another conversation) who can be living lives despicable lives and committing despicable acts even under civil standards, the authority to decide on our religious behavior and on what is Hashem’s will. Was that really what Hashem gave over to Moshe at Har Sinai? And regarding “Mesorah” – have you ever played the game of telephone as a child, where the message is so garbled at the end of the circle as to be unrecognizable? Why would an all knowing God have his will be distorted and garbled into virtual insanity (see the Chumrah of the Month Club or the Hakpadah of the Year Club or the Newly Discovered Halachos Club for examples) by giving it over to men to be distorted throughout the millennia? And if Torah and Rabbanus can be used to hurt people – is it really all that holy? Is it really God’s will or did some Rov with OCD just decide this is a halachah? And if Torah and Rabbanus is used to hurt people then who needs it?

      • You are raising a very sensitive point. However, throughout history, even a genuinely great person was rejected by Klal Yisrael if he left the Derech of Torah and Mitzvos. A good example is Elisha ben Avuyah, AKA Acher. He was a towering Tanna, whose greatness in Torah cannot be fathomed. The great Rebbi Meir was his Talmid. Yet, when he became a Rasha, he was rejected by all (Rebbi Meir continued to learn from him, because he knew how to separate the wheat from the chaff, but that’s a separate discussion). It was understood that the Torah is eternal, and Elisha ben Avuyah no longer represented the Torah.

        This certainly applies to Dovid Weinberger who, to paraphrase the late Senator Lloyd Bentsen, “is no Elisha ben Avuyah.” We need to recognize that, if he ever represented the Torah, he no longer does.

  8. As those in the know are well-aware, Weinberger has never denied his guilt when confronted directly with the smoking-gun. His response consisted of threatening suicide should the matter become public. At the same time, he kept making foolish moves that ensured that the matter would have to be publicized.

    • i agree with u joe. we have to know and educate our kids that most rabanim are erlich and there are bad apples. very well stated! weinberger is a true sociopath . definition a person with total self involvement and no conscience. he will never commit suicide nor will he repent. if he had any intention of repenting he would leave all alone and becin a rehab center doing tshuva and working on his serious illness.

      • “weinberger is a true sociopath . definition a person with total self involvement and no conscience.”

        Indeed, as Weinberger’s actions demonstrate, from the time he was confronted with the evidence, the entire issue in his mind was how to keep his position, as opposed to how to possibly rectify the untold harm he caused to his countless victims.

    • he still denies it today. people who have spent time with him , say he says the whole thing is sheker!

      • “he still denies it today. people who have spent time with him , say he says the whole thing is sheker!”

        That doesn’t surprise me all that much. Part of the challenge of living a double life is constantly having to lie your way out of things, so Weinberger is simply doing what he’s done for years (often by accusing the victim of having tried to “come onto him”). Unfortunately for all his victims, Weinberger got away with it for a long time, but it finally caught up with him. At this point, his denials will only continue to cause more embarrassing information to come out. He ought to quit while he’s behind.

        Other molesters beware – if this can happen to someone as popular as Weinberger used to be, it can and will happen to you too!

  9. It seems that the only classes Davey W. should be giving is how to pick up women,he seems to be a real pro at that.,This could make him a nice living

  10. This web site makes me sick ! where in Halacha are people allowed to have such a blog and be Motzi shem rah! So much lashon hora and disrespect for so many chasuv and special rabanim.
    From Rabbi Bender to Rav scheinberg ! what gives you the right to ripe apart and judge these rabbanim , this is beyond disgusting and is unbelievable loshon hora .
    I know Rabbi Weinberger for many many years and I know his family . i do not believe any of this . He is not a child molester , or a rapist . if anything happened it was with an adult women . why is he a predator . Maybe it was concentual and then this young woman regreted her actions . what normal woman tapes such a scenario and what normal father brings the actions of his daughter to the public?
    all of a sudden after this one story became public , people started to create many “stories”.
    I am sure that the people of the community who really know him and know the good that he has done for hundreds if not thousands of people for many years know that this is all not true and malicious disgusting gossip.

    • Fascinating. You have referenced incriminating tapes and insisted the sexual misconduct revealed on the tape between Rabbi Weinberger and this young woman was consensual. That is a legal defense, but not a justification for a rav. All your talk about the good done by rabbi Weinberger misses the point. I never denied he did some good. Nor did the other rabbonim who trounced him out of the rabbinate. Holding a position as a community leader is not an automatic right. it depends on behaving rightly, righteously. He flunked so badly he had to be forced out. If you have a complaint with the decision don’t blame me. Admit that you are angry at over 14 established rabbonim in the community.

      • My problem with you is this web site of loshon hora and slander ! who do you think you are . you are not only writing against Rabbi Weinberger , You write against Rav Scheinberg . Rabbi Bender , Rabbi Ginzburg the list goes on and on ! What gives you the right to do this ? This is not the worst form of loshon hora and motzei shem rah.
        your whole web site should be taken down .

        • To anonymous,

          I have told Yerachmiel in a private communication that I do not always agree with his tone, which I sometimes find to be disrespectful to certain Rabbanim.

          However, in the case of Dovid Weinberger, whatever downside there is to publicizing the matter is far outweighed by the need to prevent Weinberger from destroying any more lives. And making the matter public is the only way to do so.

          As Yerachmiel notes, even if Weinberger’s actions were fully consensual, he would still be more than disqualified from serving as a Rav (those who have heard even a small portion of the incriminating recordings are completely disgusted with the man). I assure, you, however, that, at the very least in some cases, his physical contact with females was not anything close to consensual. And I know this with 100% certainty.

          You may not believe his guilt, but at least be smart, and don’t let your wife or daughter be alone with him!

        • 1. There is only slander (motzi shem rah) if my facts were false. But they weren’t. I take great care on that score.

          2. I also try to avoid loshon horah (telling the truth which is harmful to the reputation of others). But you are ignoring important exceptions to that prohibition. Most importantly, there is an exception when there is a toeles, a need to protect others from harm. Weinberger poses a serious harm to others. Those who protected him are part of the problem. Even if Weinberger is completely put out of business, people are entitled to know which rabbonim can be trusted to deal with other public hazards.

    • You are a moron!
      “if anything happened it was with an adult women . why is he a predator “…true, he had illicit relationships with adult women. hello! Fool! Do you not see anything wrong with this? I am sure his wife would disagree with you. Do you think Rabbi Bender disagrees? What about R’ Ginzburg? Is he okay with this? Or is this case where over 20 girls I mean adult women were affected do we not have the right to make this public? I suspect if this were your daughter you might MIGHT feel differently. Just a thought. Stop thinking that Rabbonim are infallible, they are not-they sin like all others and when they do it has a true negative impact on everyone who comes within 3 degrees of their respective circles.

  11. Still does not give you or anyone on this web site or any other web site to speak negatively about Rabbi Bender, rabbi ginzberg , Rabbi Ginzberg”s brother and most of all a gadol Rav Scheinberg.
    people are worried about their children, they should first worry about what they are teaching their children through their own speech and actions . Teach your children to have respect for rabbanim and torah by having respect for rabanim and torah and teach children to not speak loshon hora but not speaking loshon hora .most of all don’t show your children that you are spending your life sitting by a computer gossiping !

    • There is not just a right but a responsibility to report conduct endangering others. This is according the chofetz chaim. This is also according the Torah where it says Do not stand by idly on the blood of your fellow Jew. Just remember this command is the completion, and the qualifier of the verse that begins by admonishing us against rechilus (negative gossip).

      Being seen as a gadol does not give one a heter to defend sexual misconduct. When a true godol makes a mistake, like Yehuda and Dovid Hamelech, he admits it. Status is not mivatel aveiros. That is why we have a whole masechta Haroiyos.

      • dear anonymous., how insulting u are to these young many not even nineteen yr old women who have been exploited by this pervert. theyvwere vulnerable and in very bad place in their lives! he took full advantage of these situations and blackmailed them to shut up! if u need any proof the disgusting tapes are available! no one pn this site is berating rabanim. the truth needs to be heard ! why are u posting?

  12. i am posting because I know him for many many years and don’t believe the accusations. and I feel he wasn’t treated properly no one really heard his side.
    most of all because of all the loshon hora and slander against all the other rabanim

    • A lot of us also thought we knew Dovid Weinberger. The man has been living a double life for a long time. Because Weinberger’s image was that of a prominent Rav, who surely wouldn’t openly violate issurim (let alone prohibitions that are Yeihareig v’al Ya’avor), vulnerable young ladies trusted him, which made the man extremely dangerous.

      He was extremely popular at Shaaray Tefila – so much so, that they never would have let him go had there been any doubt that he was guilty.

      And you’re wrong that Weinberger’s side wasn’t heard – he stopped denying his guilt (and threatened to kill himself) when a sample of his X-rated telephone recordings was played in front of his former colleagues in December (this public humiliation had become necessary, because Weinberger had started to downplay the behavior that had gotten him fired both from Shaaray and from his two teaching positions). For their part, the Rabbanim were completely repulsed by Weinberger, whose disgusting actions had breached every level of human decency. Despite this, they would have kept things quiet had the ex-rabbi not continued to push his luck and have pipe dreams that he was still fit for Rabbanus.

      • mr anonymous he was misader kiddushin and mentor to our kids and families as well . what about all of us who gave big money to find out he has women on his payroll! grow up and realize we all didnt know him! and he is not ashamed or dojng anything about himself! walking around the victim going to israel for pessach and after admitting his guilt now blaming the victims!

  13. The question (which is now moot) is whether the rabbonim should have “kept things quiet had the ex-rabbi not continued to push his luck,” as Joe notes.

    If things had been kept, it seems virtually certain that there would have been more karbonos, including possibly more teenage girls and married women.

    I think the rabbonim who urge us all to do cheshbon ha’nefesh and to shteig during this zman should themselves do a bit of cheshbon ha’nefesh and shteig in their understanding of such diagnoses as sociopath / psychopath, sex addiction, narcissism, and the like.

    If this can happen for decades, under our very noses, it can happen anywhere.

    The community needs healing. Many people place their trust in their rav. They confide in him and seek guidance. They send their children, including teenage sons and daughters, to seek the rav’s counsel. They trust that our high schools and ladies’ seminaries would not keep on their faculty someone about whom there were rumors not for weeks or even months but for years.

    What has been learned from this case?

    For example, should we assume that anyone who becomes rav of a shul can do counseling on marital issues or relationship issues? Should we assume that knowledge of basar b’chalav means the rav knows about psychological boundaries? About the power dynamic in relationships involving rav and congregant?

  14. did he actually have women on the payroll? Where is that proof? and how can we hear this x-rated recording?

    • I have not heard he had them on payroll. It is more likely he used his rabbi discretionary fund and converted it into a “Rabbi’s indiscretion fund.”

      The tapes are extremely embarassing for the victim and should not be put in public just to satisfy folks curiosity without the consent of the victim.

        • I’m sure the rabbanim or therapist that have them don’t just give them out for anyone to hear especially for someone who runs an internet blog!

        • Please get over your curiosity – the victims have wisely kept the recordings from being made public (so far), doing Dovid Weinberger a favor that he doesn’t at all deserve (he would be well-advised, however, not to push his luck any further). Besides, if you are a decent person who is not accustomed to X-rated material, you will be disgusted beyond words.

          • The question remains as to why women were not believed until recordings made things crystal clear for the rabbonim. Safety of our women and children, including naive girls in seminaries such as She’efa, women who had shailos pertaining to niddah (guess who was the posek for the mikvah),and troubled souls should have been the priority. Why take a chance and allow someone to continue in his post until the recordings made things so blatantly obvious that denial on the part of some was no longer feasible?

            Going forward, when it comes to ensuring public safety will our rabbonim accept the word of multiple victims–even children–or will they continue to wait until incontrovertible evidence is provided?

            Why was this person offered the opportunity to resign under false pretenses?

            Why was the community not warned until he tried to re-establish himself?

            Don’t we deserve answers?

            Ask your shul’s rav some of these questions.

  15. The whole thing doesn’t make sense ! what normal person traps him by having made the tape > and then she turns the embarrassing tapes over to a therapist or rabbi?
    the whole thing sounds like somebody or bodies wanted to get him fired and planned this .
    Also you are not talking about a stupid man.

    • I am not getting into details. Suffice it to say that when someone keeps on harassing, it is wise to record because of people like you. If there was no tape I will bet you would have said, but why should we believe her if she has no proof and Weinberger denies the allegation. In truth, the real problem is that dozens of other females reported on Weinberger for years but no one believed them.

    • “Annonymous”, you can’t have it both ways. If there’s no proof, you don’t believe the accusations. And if one or two quick-thinking victims (who are being harassed without end and who have told Weinberger multiple times to leave them alone) decide to gather evidence of his gross sexual misconduct, they’re “entrapping” him. Furthermore, if they don’t keep this evidence to themselves, but (gasp!) turn the evidence over to a Rav or therapist to conduct an investigation and have this jerk removed from Rabbanus, they’re not “normal” according to your warped understanding!

  16. People like to embellish , I don’t believe for a second that he threatened to kill himself , I do believe that allot of this is instigated by his mother in law , who has her own agenda

  17. Yea! The whole thing is a set up, a sham, a fraud, no evidence. The system has won and RDW has lost. Not sure how this mighty king has fallen so low but this is a conspiracy just like the Kennedy assassination.

    • MM: was your tongue planted firmly in your cheek when you posted your reply? 🙂

      Bottom line: multiple accusers, over many years, damning audiotaphe … the kehillah is fortunate that Hashem saw to it that the whole scandal became public knowledge…. Nevertheless, cognitive dissonance prevails and many will cling to their false beliefs rather than confront the bitter truth ie that they were deceived

  18. yes…tongue in cheek. Perhaps my sarcasm was a bit muted. The Kennedy assassination was a conspiracy though.

  19. why would his wife stand by him if all of this were true ? why was she told by rabbonim to stand by him

  20. Boruch Hashem that Weinberger was finally exposed for what he is. And, Boruch Hashem that one or more victims was able to prove his guilt with extremely damning recordings – otherwise, I’m afraid to say that “annonymous” wouldn’t be the only one with his head buried deep in the sand.

    • The implication remains that without he damning recordings the women who complained and warned the rabbinic over a long period of time would not have been believed.
      This is a major flaw in the system and there needs to be true cheshbon ha’nefesh by those who were earned and chose not to believe these acts on the part of a colleague were conceivable (no pun intended).
      Bottom line: public safety needs to come first !

      • I agree. The recordings should have merely been icing on the cake (or, more appropriate, the final nail in Weinberger’s coffin).

      • This is beyond a “major flaw in the system”. It is a total reflection of the Jewish male attitude ligabei the worth of a woman. she lo asani esha. brainwash the little yeshiva buggers from age zero. I think you meant “by those who were warned”.
        shut them up. cover them up, keep them “locked away” in a different room, (the farther the better).
        Then go and “DO” the prepubescents at the MIKVEH. Sick Sick Charedim. Not that non charedim do not violate similarly. The disgusting story of Yeshiva University is testimony to that. Why in g-d’s name is there no “testimony”.
        How does the Skver Rebber get away with those acts of which he is accused, which are commonly believed to be true? There. Everything is always covered up. If I were a Skver living in Kiryas Joel, and wanted to leave, and I owned a home, how would I handle the disentanglement from the community. What if… ok, enough. well when the house boy gets out of prison for taking the rap, (on videotape). what will happen to him/by him. He has a lot of time to consider the sacrifice he made for his Rebbe. Might there be ramifications?

        • This sort of response is not unique to orthodox Jewish society, but we should be smarter than this… and we should expect from our rabbonim a safety-focused approach wherein multiple victims are believed to the extent that the perpetrator is no longer enabled to seduce / groom more victims

  21. it is a very difficult nisayon to work with women, listening to their personal problems, discussing with them how to solve their intimate problems in the bedroom, and not get excited. most Rabbonim keep a football field away from these issues. but rabbi weinberger who is a person that cares about others, got involved, assuming he has the self control and be on the guard. he failed in misjudgement on how strong the desire for women is. and he fell deeply. but from here and to picture him as a wicked man is totally uncalled for. it could be assumed that anyone of us would of fallen if found in similar situation.

    • Describing Dovid Weinberger as a “wicked man” very much understates the matter. Your argument, at best, somewhat mitigates Weinberger’s severe personal aveiros, but those sins (which, by themselves, would be more than enough to disqualify him from the Rabbinate) are besides the point. He caused grievous harm to countless victims, a number of whom are likely no longer with us, either physically, spiritually, and/or emotionally. Nothing can excuse that.

    • Weinberger should have known that he is the last person on earth who should be working with women. His failure to realize this long ago does not excuse his repulsive behavior, which went on for years. Furthermore, for the record, he didn’t only molest women who came to him with their most “intimate problems.” Heaven help a girl who called him with an innocent question; if he detected that she was vulnerable, he took full advantage of her trust (and of her).

      • There can be absolutely no excuse for someone in a position of power to have sexual relations with someone seeks his counsel.

    • “Fresh” Perspective’s lame arguments to downplay Weinberger’s crimes are anything but fresh. They are as rank as the Rebbe’s veissah zokken noch a 3 day Shavuos.

      The rabbonim were initially going to let Weinberger quietly fade away but he couldn’t let go of his fantasy that he is fit to be a mechanech and a manhig.

      • Didn’t understand the analogy.
        Denial is not just a river in Egypt.
        Predators and Sociopaths often have delusions … But some merely seek ongoing access to victims

  22. ? to joe: what is your source for the following statement
    “Heaven help a girl who called him with an innocent question; if he detected that she was vulnerable, he took full advantage of her trust (and of her)”

    if that is fact, then your argument is strong. but if your”e just assuming that, it’s a different story.

    also what you wrote “He caused grievous harm to countless victims, a number of whom are likely no longer with us, either physically, spiritually, and/or emotionally”

    having a difficult time adopting this. the women in the greater community are very affluent women, very self opinionated, who know how to take care of themselves.
    they are not chasidesheh believing the rebbe is Moshe Rabbeinu, or naive baaley teshuva.

    i definitely agree he should not serve a practicing rabbi, but from here and to burn him at the stake there is a long margin. as a private person, his actions are within the boundry of where many people under such conditions would fall. [once again, if he didn”t seduce girls to come to him, but only acted when the women came to him for advice]

    ? to 5t resident: where do you know that he had sexual relations, the real thing.
    simply can”t imagine why would a lawrence girl, married to a handsome wealthy guy, allow herself to be seduced by an overweight older fellow.
    i agree that even phone sex is enough for him not to to be a practicing rabbi, and therefore the other rabbi”s forced him pout. but from here to portray him as john holmes, might be far from the truth

    • I agree with you 100 percent ! There obviously are reasons for him to have been fired from the shul but I don’t believe all that was done was necissary and that all of these discussions about him should be taking place.

    • 1) I don’t have direct evidence but there have been young ladies and women who have apparently alleged this person engaged in sexual behavior (“willful” and otherwise); why would they all lie? Their testimony was enough to force the hand of his rabbinic colleagues.
      2) The recordings back up their claims
      3) no one can expect these victims to expose themselves to public shame and worse, as they try to repair their lives

    • Fresh perspective,
      I have with great restraint not responded to much of the disturbing nonsense that you post. Left it to others.
      HOWEVER, my secular knowledge tells me that your reference to John Holmes is way out of the ball park. Holmes was NOT notorious due to some number of sexual encounters that he had, or might have had. John Holmes was a porn star and his claim to fame was the supposed enormity of his organ.
      LOL, and we all know that “white men”, and particularly Jews, suffer from small man’s syndrome. LOL it is “enormously” erroneous to even contemplate a “Weinberger” with John Holmes-like attributes.
      It is possible that some of the readers here might even bemoan that fact. Check out your allusions, they are as erroneous as your other posits.

  23. one more question for joe regarding your statement
    “He caused grievous harm to countless victims, a number of whom are likely no longer with us, either physically, spiritually, and/or emotionally”

    do you know anyone, even by hear say that are no longer with us
    the 5 towns isn”t that big
    if all of a sudden a family left the area, and for no apparant reason thereby raising the suspicion that they moved because the wife was seduced by DW, everyone would of heard about it

    so too if someone went off the derech, or became meshuga

    i did not.
    do you have any info regarding this point.

    every adultry causes harm to the surrounding families, but it is not a crime, and if the husband kills the audultrus wife and her lover, he will be in jail for life.
    my point being once again, as a rabbi he must not be allowed under any circumstance
    but as a private citizen, he didn”t commit a bigger crime that millions out there who enjoy extra marital affairs. and should be left alone to live his a life as a private citizen

    frank barone once said: God created the man to plant his seed as he may, and created the woman to limit the crop to one farmer.

  24. To Fresh Perspective,

    A few points. You seem to be assuming that Weinberger is only being accused of messing around with wealthy married women. I’m referring more to vulnerable single girls, young enough to be his granddaughter. If some of them went off the Derech, would anyone have connected that to Weinberger? If some of them developed severe emotional difficulties, would anyone have connected that to Weinberger? If some of them committed suicide, c”v, would anyone have connected that to Weinberger? This is what I meant by some of his victims likely no longer being with us in one way or another. And his victims were not limited to the Five Towns.

    If you know anything about what molesting does to trusting victims, these are not unrealistic scenarios. If you don’t know much about molesting, please read up on it before defending this molester (or any other).

    As to what I wrote “Heaven help a girl who called him with an innocent question; if he detected that she was vulnerable, he took full advantage of her trust (and of her)” – this is not an assumption; it is based on first hand knowledge. And it wasn’t only phone sex.

    As to your comment: “I definitely agree he should not serve a practicing rabbi, but from here and to burn him at the stake there is a long margin.” The comments here (at least mine) are just to set the record straight when someone defends this molester (I first spoke up only after the R. Belsky letter was called to my attention). Stop defending him, and I (and others) won’t have the need to reveal more information.

  25. joe, if what you wrote ” this is not an assumption; it is based on first hand knowledge”, is accurate to the truth, i rest my case and have no defense for him.
    since i knew dw for many years, and never accounted any hint of misbehaviour, have a hard time comprehending how he could of done such things. and it is frightning to think how we have to be on the guard regarding everybody.
    that is scary !!

    the time has to come, to appoint female family instructors, and only they should deal directly with women and girls. and when they have a big question, only they should approach a ruv.

  26. The irony is that those who keep asking for “evidence” and saying that they don’t believe that Weinberger did anything “that” bad, or excusing or downplaying his behavior, are usually the first to scream “Loshon Hara!” as soon as “evidence” is presented. If you’re in that much denial as to excuse or downplay what Weinberger did, then you are not going to like hearing the evidence.

    Weinberger obviously did not prey on the wealthy, established, married Lawrence women who have healthy marriages and a strong support system. His exposure to women and girls outside his immediate shul kehila was vast. He taught in girls high schools for over 25 years, girls seminaries in the USA (post-high-school), gave weekly and monthly shiurim for women, and was the rabbinic counselor for the Shalom Task Force (a frum organization helping battered women). Women and girls from all over New York and New Jersey sought out Weinberger as a Rabbinic counselor who understood and had experience with women’s issues. He was a rav who they knew and were familiar with from the shiurim they would attend or from their high school years of having him as a teacher. As a sexual predator who was an intelligent man, he obviously would only target those who he sensed were vulnerable – women and girls who did not have wealth, prestige and strong emotional or familial support. Those vulnerable women and girls he would target were the ones who not only turned to him as “Daas Torah,” as a compassionate authority figure, but because they didn’t know where else to turn, who they could trust, or couldn’t afford a therapist. He wasn’t a stupid man, inasmuch as he is clearly in deep denial of his illness and how it disqualifies him to work in rabbanus.

    To say that any man would have succumbed to their yetzer hara after hearing intimate details of a woman’s marriage relationship is ridiculous. Besides for the fact that Weinberger didn’t spend 24/7 listening to women’s intimate bedroom problems (as a woman, I can attest to you that most women are not sharing those details with him) anyone in a position of authority or power, be it a physician or a college professor, needs to be responsible and careful with the authority and power they hold. It is part of their job description. This wasn’t a one-time “mistake” that Weinberger made with a married neighbor. He abused his rabbinic position of power and authority and preyed on vulnerable girls and women seeking “Daas Torah” – rabbinic counsel.

    If you would like to keep your head buried in the sand, by all means, go ahead. But don’t excuse and downplay the behavior of sexual abuse by a Rov just because it doesn’t fit into your world view and expect the rest of us to go along with your delusions.

    Unfortunately, as was pointed out above, there is no process by which to protect those in our communities who are vulnerable to such abuse. A powerful and respected Rov who is accused of such behavior would be believed over any one poor woman or girl suffering from other problems in her life. What the Frum world needs is a professional board of some sort where complaints can be filed, vetted and tracked, so that when such behavior is reported by multiple, unrelated individuals can be dealt with by removal and exposure of the sexual predator.

    Additionally, the fact that there were Rabbanim who were willing to let Weinberger go “quietly” and assume additional positions of rabbanus, or even “only” teaching positions, is highly problematic. A sexual predator like that does not stop, and the frum community needs to be warned that he is at large and a danger to our society. This is no different than allowing a child molester to move to another frum neighborhood to prey on other frum children. Why aren’t we learning from past experiences? Why are Rabbanim seemingly protecting their own? And if the fox cannot be trusted to guard the henhouse, then we need hired professionals to do so, in order to maintain trust in our Rabbanim. Sadly, this is what it has come to. But denying the truth will not change it. There are Rabbanim who are sexual predators. Weinberger was not the first, and he will not be the last. What are we doing to prevent this from happening again?

  27. What we won’t do is confront our rabbonim.
    We will continue to rely on ‘experts’ who write letters seeking reduced prison time for sexual predators.
    We will continue to be afraid of the ‘powers that be,’ in the shuls, yeshivas etc.
    We will continue to read newspapers and periodicals whose publishers are afraid to even mention this scandel.
    We will not realize that is only by a grassroots action that we can protect our children.
    We won’t do anything.
    Or will we?

  28. answer to SERIUOSLY
    you wrote a very nice letter, and is making me thinking.

    but, can you clarify a few points for me
    1. is there any claim or proof whatsoever, that he engaged more than phone sex or dirty language, but actual contact sex.
    the rabbonim would have him fired even for that, therefore, how does everyone assume that he jumped the line of illicit sexual acts ?

    2. why do you assume that the rabbonim allowed him off free to be a mechanech.
    my impression is, that if dw would have quitely stepped down from all his positions, and commit himself to never take up a new position, they would not publicly shame him and family. but never did they allow him to be a danger to the public

    3. i agree time has come to create a committee of respected women, to be the one”s to hear all cases of sexual misbehaviour, and be the watchguard of our precious yound girls and women.

    once again, i appreciate your letter.
    i admit that due to the shock, that a man that i knew well and respected, could act in such ways, causes my head not to believe.
    it is scary to think, what other respected people are doing these things right now

    • To ‘Fresh Perspective’: I understand your shock. I, too, have known DW for over 20 years and would never have imagined him capable of such things. I was in denial when I first heard the allegations. It was only after speaking to people I trust who had first-hand knowledge of his actions that I realized that it was my own mind and my own defense mechanisms that I needed to overcome. I had made up my mind that DW was innocent of the accusations, and didn’t want to be confused with the facts. We are all susceptible to this. The difference between you and I is that I didn’t go on blogs to publically defend him. I took a back seat until I heard more than I wanted to know. To say that I’m horrified is an understatement. I simply wish it weren’t true. But it is, and denial of the facts simply because I can’t handle the truth is not helpful to anyone.

      Those of us who knew and trusted DW now feel betrayed and many are devastated. Not to mention the fact that a Talmid Chochom and someone who represented Torah, Halachah and Hashkafah was behind the scenes abusing the very Kavod HaTorah afforded to him for his own sexual pleasure.

      In answer to your question – nobody is assuming anything. There are people with first hand knowledge, who have heard from women what he did. You ask for details but why should you be privy to them? They are private, embarrassing for the victims, and should not be public knowledge unless the victims want it so.

      I find it ridiculous that you keep asking for “proof” as if someone should produce a stained dress which you can test for DNA evidence. What would constitute as “enough” evidence or proof for you? And even more importantly, what would have been enough “evidence” or “proof” for the few thousand years before phone recordings and DNA testing? It is indeed a very sad commentary that earlier complaints fell on deaf ears, and that only a phone recording made the rabbanim sit up and listen, and realize that the complaints are true and that women who claim that something real and inappropriate happened can be believed.

      The rabbanim who allowed him to leave quietly and not warn the public about his proclivities were allowing for a scenario where he could continue to abuse his past position and reputation. The only reason this all became public is because DW was trying to start a new shul in the FarRockaway/5Towns. If he had just left quietly he could have continued to council women in another neighborhood and then continued to take advantage of those who were vulnerable. (And nobody would be the wiser because our “Gedolim” and “Chashuv Rabbonim” have prohibited us from reading blogs and using the internet, and many sincere Frum people follow those orders.)

      Another thing I think you may not understand is the devastation of being taken advantage of by a Rov in a position of power, when you, yourself are vulnerable to begin with. I have no doubt that the lives of the girls and women who experienced this kind of abuse will never be the same. What of the girls and women who complained years earlier, but who weren’t believed? Or girls and women who didn’t have the nerve or technological ability to make a recording, who took what dignity and strength they had left to move on with their lives and just stay far away? Or the ones who had nobody to complain to, who knew that they themselves were nobodies, and that their accusations and complaints even if heard, would fall on deaf ears while accusing someone prestigious, experienced and Chashuv of such base behavior.

      For the sake of the healing of these women I hope that one day the details of all women who suffered Rabbinic Sexual Abuse will be out there, will see the light of day, and that all the “proof” and “evidence” you seek will be public. But just as you were so quick to publically deny the accusations and excuse DW, others will pounce upon the victims and scream that they are making up stories, trying to get attention, threw themselves at the abuser, seduced him, or whatever other excuses can be conjured up so that people don’t have to accept the horrible truth. Unfortunately, because of the likelihood of that happening, most if not all victims of Rabbinic sexual abuse have stayed quiet and suffered in silence their entire lives. And all the while their abusers are given Kavod Rav.

  29. once again, you write very clearly, and i appreciate it. i am sure that i am not the only one who needs to digest what happened. therefore, i would like you to furthur clarify a few points.

    1. quote: “You ask for details but why should you be privy to them? They are private, embarrassing for the victims, and should not be public knowledge unless the victims want it so.”

    i am not asking for details, and certainly not for names or such information.
    just wanted to know the answer to a very general question:
    what category of sexual abuse was he accused of:
    a] phone sex. b] sexual harrasment at person to person meetings c] touching/hugging
    d] kissing e] fondling [second base] f] third base g] homerun

    even weberman was publicly accused of third base, and had a public trial with huge coverage, to this day the name of the victim is not public knowledge, and impossible to download it from the internet
    so by answering the above question, it does not affect any of dw victims, for the general public has no idea who they are.
    many people are under the assumption, that the whole accusation of dw is – phone sex/skype
    and while all agree that it is sufficent to force him to retire forever from all his posts.

    so when you write “The irony is that those who keep asking for “evidence” and saying that they don’t believe that Weinberger did anything “that” bad, or excusing or downplaying his behavior, are usually the first to scream “Loshon Hara!” as soon as “evidence” is presented”

    on the contrary, up to this moment i am begging for “loshon harah” on dw.
    unfortunately, never heard what category crime did he commit, so i have nothing to believe or to not believe !!
    i am not downplaying his behavior, but actually asking to be informed of his behavior.

    i am not the only one who is not being informed, and demanded to believe that dw is a wicked man, and when we ask what did he do, we are attacked as dw protectors.
    and when we are refused simple info, about the ruv that we knew for so long, we are told that we are obligated to believe

      • thank you for the info.

        as of now i join forces with his strongest opponents,
        and will be on the lookout if he gets offered rabbinical jobs in israel

        there he has a lot of friends, due to the years of “vaad harabonim” tzdakah fund, and the “taramti vehoshati” campaign.

        millions of dollars were funneled thru him, thereby him becoming a “gadol” in israel.
        in israel, dollars are worth more than bnos yisrael
        so the danger is very serious

        • 1) One rav stated in private that he would not be surprised if the predator engaged in sexual intercourse with at least one of his numerous victims

          2) Someone was told by a rav directly of disgusting acts on the part of the predator

          3) I too knew the predator for some 2 decades and if not for the credibility of the evidence presented would not have believed this person did such despicable acts

          4) Given the predator has a son who has a shul and who has reportedly spoken in what could be considered a very inappropriate fashion about ‘intimate’ topics with ladies in his kehillah, the question arises as to whether that son should be ‘called out’ or whether people should wait to see what will come of this. Keep in mind that the safety of our (relatively naive) young ladies and women should be uppermost in our minds. (I realize that this post may be censored but what has been rumored is already concerning enough.)

  30. Yerachmiel once mentioned that Dave was taking victims to another shul. Could that shul be the son’s? There is also there the Yeshiva Ketana of Long Island which is run by the extended Scheinberg family. The son is also rosh yeshiva of a beis medrash located in the W shul.

    The yeshiva by the way also has one of Yehuda Kolko’s sons volunteering to take care of the young boys during motzaei Shabbos sports games.

  31. When Rabbi Dovid Weinberger first when missing, MIA, I told everyone he was either dead, or in hiding, threatened by unscurpulious men like the “ProdFather-Rabbi Eisen”, or someone like Rabbi Baruch Gradon. These are men who use religion to gain power, and money. These are dangerous men to whom should all be arrested by the FBI. There is an entire network of these ivy league fake rabbis who are using religion like a mafia organization. Like my husband always said “It’s a business, follow the money” http://balladofphilipfishelcohen.blogspot.com/p/rabbi-baruch-michael-gradon-spiritual.html

    • hes in har nof shaulzon . they are very careful to throw women out who dont wear stockings but men who adulteres and womanizers are welcome.

      • why should they throw him out ? you people are ridiculous ! The man is allowed to live ! and to go on with life . The five towns didn’t want him anymore ok…he’s gone . he’s not a rav and he’s not teaching . he’s allowed to find a place to live and go on with life . Who says that people are allowed to go on with such a witch hunt ! it’s beyond disgusting !

    • that is utter nonsense , and pure loshan hora. she had her own issues nothing to do with rabbi weinberber or rabbi flaum!!!!!!!!!!
      you people need to let this rest and get on with your lives . Stop letting your imagination run wild.

      • While I agree that Rav Flaum was innocent, why are you so sure that Weinberger didn’t try to take advantage of the Lightman situation given what we now know about him?

    • While it is possible, sex was not Weinberger’s only motivation. He was into power, and often took sides in marital disputes for other reasons. I think he got off on being able to determine the winners and losers or even people’s life plans.

      • I think we react so strongly with denial because we have expectations and standards of people who are involved in Torah.

        Admitting that they did what they are accused of means, in our minds, that suddenly we can’t trst any rabbonim.

        But you know what, it says you shouldn’t trust even yourself until the day you die.

        But being involved in Torah is a good way to try and protect yourself from stumbling.

        Obviously we each have challenges on our own levels, and yes sometimes peoples personalities lend them to challenges like the one mentioned above. And yes, he or she is responsible for committing the act.
        But in general, I think its safe to say, that talmidei chachamim who learn Torah are among the most trustworthy people you can find. (Including the fact that the majority of them wouldn’t place themselves in a challenging situation – whatever that means on their level-to begin with.)

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