D.C. prosecutors are still trying to determine how many naked women a Georgetown rabbi allegedly spied on while they participated in a Jewish ritual bath and told a D.C. Superior Court judge today they need more time before deciding whether to offer the rabbi plea deal, the Washington Post reported.
D.C. police arrested Rabbi Barry Freundel, a prominent rabbi who oversaw the modern orthodox Kesher Israel congregation in Georgetown, in October for allegedly spying on women while they were partaking in a mikveh—-a bath used in orthodox Jewish rituals. He pleaded not guilty at the time to six misdemeanor counts of voyeurism.
Officials discovered a black Sony Dream Machine radio clock with a hidden camera they say Freundel filmed people with in the shower area used to rinse off before the ceremonial bath. Evidence suggests the scope of the voyeurism extends well beyond those six victims, and since his arrest, many more women have come forward saying they think they might have been filmed.
Freundel taught at Towson University in Baltimore, and several students there say they participated in a mikveh after Freundel suggested it would be an educational experience.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Amy Zubresnky told the judge today, according to the Post, that the U.S. attorney’s office was setting up a web site explaining the case and providing contact information for victims’ rights advocates in an attempt to reach out to potential victims. A handful of victim advocates from the U.S. attorney’s office reportedly sat in the courtroom today wearing name tags in case any potential victims were also present.
Freundel, who was present in court today, faces up to one year in prison for each of the six counts of voyeurism.
Another hearing is scheduled for Jan. 16.
Screenshot of synagogue via Googlemaps