YONKERS, NY –October 14, 2014 — Rabbi Barry Freundel, the two-decade long spiritual leader at Kesher Israel, The Georgetown Synagogue, a modern orthodox synagogue community in Washington, D.C., was arrested and charged with voyeurism. Metropolitan Police Department Officers and plainclothes detectives escorted the 62-year-old Rabbi Freundel in handcuffs from his home this morning in handcuffs. Police Officers searched his home in the Georgetown section of the nation’s capital. Cops were later seen removing computers and other items from the residence.
Within hours after the arrest, Kesher Israel’s board of directors suspended him without pay.
Other than the Yonkers Tribune gaining notice of the arrest and the alleged charges, police declined to provide additional details.
Law enforcement authorities under condition of anonymity advise the case involves hidden cameras. Inference is made of cameras being installed in both the synagogue bathrooms and the Mikvah. The Mikvah is a ritual bath primarily used for people converting to Judaism, and by observant Jewish women at very intimate times, including after menstruation, as a way of purifying themselves.
Rabbi Freundel is expected to appear before the Washington, D.C. Superior Court on Wednesday, October 15, 2014.
Rabbi Freundel rose from simple beginnings. First as a Yonkers resident, then becoming a rabbi serving the Section of The Bronx.
The Kesher Israel Website divulged that Freundel presently heads the conversion committee of the Rabbinical Council of America, is vice president of the region’s Vaad, which oversees kosher dietary laws at Jewish institutions, has taught at Baltimore Hebrew University, the University of Maryland, Georgetown University School of Law, served as a consultant to the National Institutes of Health on ethical issues, and serves on the executive council of centrist Orthodoxy’s Rabbinical Council of America.