Jewish police officers this week are standing firmly behind one of their own who breached the so-called "blue wall of silence" in the Abner Louima trial.
"He said what he saw, and that's what a cop is supposed to do," said Sgt. Eric Finkelstein, president of the Shomrim Society, of Det. Eric Turetzky.
Shomrim represents 2,800 officers, civilian employees and retirees of the NYPD.
Marking the fourth anniversary of the shooting of Gideon Busch, family and friends gathered at the site in Borough Park to recite poems and prayers, while politicians called for a new investigation of the incident.
Busch was gunned down by police officers who said he charged at them with a hammer after they answered a disturbance call. Witnesses said Busch posed no threat to the cops, and a forensic expert is expected to concur in a civil trial this fall.
A man arrested for stealing from a synagogue last year was charged Tuesday with nine more counts of burglary in Brooklyn. Police said Marc Cukierwar, 31, dressed as an Orthodox Jew and stole hundreds of dollars from charity boxes at several synagogues in the Sheepshead Bay area. It is unclear if he is actually Jewish. Cukierwar was arrested Dec. 28 while trying to buy drugs, said State Sen. Carl Kruger of Sheepshead Bay.
Acting on a tip from an Orthodox community source, narcotics detectives from the Brooklyn District Attorney's office raided a Midwood apartment last week and confiscated 66 marijuana plants, worth an estimated $50,000.
After executing a search warrant, the detectives arrested Leopold Ostreicher, 35, at the scene and charged him with felony possession of marijuana, a first-degree felony punishable by two-and-a-third to seven years in jail. Ostreicher, who has lived in the seventh-floor apartment on Ocean Parkway for two years, told authorities he is an interior designer.
Acting on a tip from rabbinic leaders, police and narcotics investigators have arrested a 50-year-old Brooklyn man they allege is known as the "pot rabbi" among Orthodox youth.
Yitzchak Fried of Midwood, who has been the leader of a controversial congregation in Manhattan's East Village, was arrested outside the Munkaczer synagogue on 13th Avenue in Borough Park on Tuesday afternoon. He was charged with criminal sale of marijuana, a third-degree felony, and faces 16 months to four years in jail.
The apparent drug overdose of a chasidic teenager in Brooklyn two weeks ago has sent shockwaves through the small but growing community of at-risk Orthodox youth, their families and the network of organizations struggling to aid them.
Moshe Feiner, 19, was found dead in a Borough Park apartment on Dec. 15, the victim of a suspected heroin overdose. Sources say Feiner had undergone drug rehabilitation as many as seven times, and was well known to Jewish anti-drug programs.
A congressman is joining the family of a disturbed Borough Park man killed by police in calling for a federal civil rights probe after a grand jury on Monday declined to indict the four officers involved in the shooting.
"There are lots of reasons to wonder about the local investigation," said Rep. Jerrold Nadler, a Democrat whose district includes Borough Park. "A federal investigation would put those questions to rest."
The police shooting of a hammer-wielding man in the Orthodox enclave of Borough Park exploded with political ramifications this week, threatening to erode support for Mayor Rudolph Giuliani in one of his staunchest bases.
Hundreds of chasidim on Monday and Tuesday nights took to the streets, many of them criticizing the officers who killed 31-year-old Gary (Gidone) Busch in a hail of bullets after he charged at them with a claw hammer.
The sudden resignation of Rockland County Assemblyman Ryan Karben earlier this month makes it unlikely the former political rising star will answer accusations that have emerged about his behavior with staff.
Although no formal charges were filed against Karben, 31, unnamed sources have leaked to the press that he was under investigation for conduct with subordinates considered inappropriate by legislative guidelines. That conduct was alleged to have included unwanted advances toward a male intern and watching a pornographic video with aides.
Borough Park community leaders are calling for a full investigation of the incident Tuesday night that led hundreds of people to block 16th Avenue, scuffling with police and lighting fires.
The situation deteriorated rapidly after an elderly man from a prominent Orthodox family, Arthur Schick, was arrested in a traffic stop.
In the course of the evening hundreds of people mobbed the streets, with police helicopters hovering above and cops in riot gear lining the sidewalks. Besides Schick, two others were arrested. Two police officers were reported injured.