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.
Blasting "Zionists in the media" and "terrorists" in the White House earned the city's top prisons chaplain a two-week unpaid leave Tuesday after Mayor Michael Bloomberg (saying there was no evidence he was inciting prisoners) declined to fire him.
But Jewish leaders didn't have a problem with Imam Umar Abdul-Jalil keeping his job, despite the recently emerged comments attributed to him in a speech to Muslim students in Arizona last April. And a Jewish chaplain who works closely with the imam on Rikers Island is defending his reputation.
It’s considered kosher but not proper. But for those who have a happy Orthodox marriage yet need a little something extra on the side, a new Web site promises to arrange that. And without the guilt.
A recent addition to the sometimes bizarre Jewish blogosphere is pilagesh.
For David Framowitz, the world became “a little safer” this week.
That’s because Rabbi Yehuda Kolko, who 48-year-old Framowitz says sexually abused him 36 years ago, was arrested last week on unrelated but similar charges. “I’m very, very relieved that justice is finally being done,” Framowitz said Monday in an interview from Israel, where he now lives.
Along the busy streets of Borough Park where Gidone Busch spent his final days, the events that led to his death five years ago have been analyzed again and again: a barely dressed man with a tallit and a hammer; two visits by the police; 12 gunshots; a dead man in a driveway.
Amid a tale already bristling with competing allegations of victimization — one by New Jersey Gov. James McGreevey and another by a former aide — the ambitious and rapidly expanding Touro College is also depicting itself as a bystander in the unfolding saga at Trenton’s statehouse.