A former student of the modern Orthodox school Salanter Akiba Riverdale Academy (SAR) in the Bronx is suing the school for allegedly not taking action after they learned a former instructor molested him.
Robert Eckmann, the former student, alleged that he was sexually abused from 1976-77 by former Assistant Principal for General Studies Stanley Rosenfeld. Although the abuse happened decades ago, Eckmann is taking advantage of New York State’s Child Victim’s Act enacted in August 2019.
Under the act, victims of childhood sexual abuse can take their abusers and the institutions that protected them to court no matter when abuse happened during a one-year look back window.
According to the law firms Jeff Anderson and Associates and Abend and Silber, Rosenfeld allegedly abused students at his home, classrooms, the office, hallways between 1974 and 1987.
In a statement from the law firms, two former SAR students told Judaic Studies teacher Rabbi Sheldon Schwartz about abuse the suffered from Rosenfeld. A former faculty member also informed then-SAR Principal Rabbi Chwat that she had seen Rosenfeld touch a boy’s groin in an office at the school.
Rosenfeld left SAR in 1977 but was was rehired in 1986 for a year as a part-time language arts teacher for sixth graders, according to the lawfirm. In 2000, Rosenfeld was arrested and charged with four counts of second degree child molestation for the abuse of 12-year-old boy.
The following year, Rosenfeld pled no contest to second degree child molestation in Rhode Island Superior Court and was given a 10-year suspended sentence and placed on probation. Rosenfeld violated his probation and was re-sentenced to 10 months in prison.
SAR has yet to respond to a request for comment from amNewYork Metro.