Trial Set To Continue For Brooklyn Orthodox Leader Accused Of Sex Abuse
NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — The trial was set to continue Monday for a prominent Brooklyn Orthodox Jewish leader accused of sexually abusing a now-17-year-old girl.
Nechemya Weberman, 54, is on trial for allegedly molesting the girl from the time she was just 12 years old in 2007 through 2010.
On Friday, the alleged victim testified that he showed her pornography and forced her to reenact the sex acts in an isolated room, according to the New York Daily News. On the witness stand, she testified that Weberman was respected as a leader whom everyone knew, and was a member of the modesty committee that enforces morality rules, the Daily News reported.
The victim testified earlier last week that Weberman kept molesting her despite her resistance.
“He proceeded to kiss me. He touched me…I yelled for him to stop. He said, ‘You see, if you yell stop, I stop. I’m not doing anything wrong. I’m not doing anything you don’t want me to do,’” the victim said Tuesday.
At one point, the teen said she stopped eating for three days. The accuser said she was so depressed she couldn’t even talk to Weberman.
“He got into bed with me and I wanted to die,” the teen stated in court on Tuesday.
She said she eventually was able to tell a school counselor what was taking place.
The defense pointed out that one day after she told Weberman she was romantically involved with a boyfriend, which is strictly forbidden in the Satmar community, her father had the boy arrested.
What the jury did not hear in court was that the father followed Weberman’s suggestion to install a hidden camera to spy on his daughter’s romantic encounters with the boy, Cornell reported.
The charges against the young man were later dropped.
Also during the trial last week, nearly 100 observers were arrested to have their cell phones confiscated.
The angry judge scolded the observers, saying a crime was committed inside the courtroom when people snapped cell phone pictures of the sex abuse accuser as she testified.
Four men, identified as supporters of Weberman, were arrested on charges they photographed the accuser as she testified. The four face contempt charges for taking pictures in a courtroom without a court order.
Weberman has pleaded not guilty to charges of committing a criminal sex act, rape, endangering the welfare of a child and sexual abuse.
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