"I feel like the best response once anyone is incarcerated is to ask for their good treatment," Emma Shulevitz told FailedMessiah.com. "The challenge is to make [Rabbi Barry Freundel] into a good person who can do better. I believe he can change. I want to work on that side. If that means I am with the defense so be it."
Above: Rabbi Barry Freundel
Last updated at 4:05 pm CDT
Victim Wants Peeping Tom Rabbi Barry Freundel Released From Jail
Shmarya Rosenberg • FailedMessiah.com
One of Rabbi Barry Freundel's victims, Emma Shulevitz, and her husband Jeffrey say they will appear at Freundel's court hearing tomorrow in support of him.
Because they say prosecutors lied to them by promising that Freundel would be incarcerated in a federal prison facility rather than the DC Jail.
Freundel is serving a 6-1/2-year sentence for secretly video-recording 52 nude women as they showered and otherwise prepared to immerse in the mikvah (ritual bath) located next to Freundel's Modern Orthodox synagogue, Kesher Israel, in the tony Georgetown neighborhood of Washington, DC. He's serving that sentence in the DC Jail, not federal prison, and because of alleged threats made against him by other inmates he's now in segregation there.
Jeffrey Shulevitz told FailedMessiah.com last night that he and his wife are going to the Friday's hearing to "fight to get Freundel released from jail. We were lied to be prosecutors who said he would go to a federal jail. No one deserves solitary confinement!"
Inmates like pedophiles, certain other types of sex criminals and inmates who murdered young children are sometimes placed in segregation to protect them from other inmates who seek to mete out prison justice and punish them – or worse. Meting out prison justice is less common in federal medium and low security facilities, in part because of the higher percentage of nonviolent inmates incarcerated in them and in part because the federal prison system is better funded and better run than state prison systems are.
"I feel like the best response once anyone is incarcerated is to ask for their good treatment. The challenge is to make him into a good person who can do better. I believe he can change. I want to work on that side. If that means I am with the defense so be it," Emma Shulevitz told FailedMessiah.com this morning.
Bethany Mandel, another prominent victim of Freundel, told FailedMessiah.com that while she doesn't think Freundel should be in solitary confinement, she and the other victims she's discussed this with strongly disagree with Emma Shulevitz.
Freundel should remain incarcerated and should serve his sentence, Mandel said.
Mandel also told FailedMessiah.com that prosecutors never told her that Freundel would serve his time in federal prison and in all the group discussions and group contact prosecutors had with Freundel's victims, she could not recall them ever saying Freundel would serve his sentence in the federal prison system.
Update 4:05 pm CDT – According the US Attorney's office, Freundel's attorneys asked for federal incarceration and the US Attorney did not oppose the request. In response, on June 9 a judge ordered Freundel to be moved to a federal facility – either Otisville in New York State where many Orthodox prisoners are held, including Rabbi Sholom Rubashkin, or Miami.
But the final decision on where inmates are incarcerated belongs to the Bureau of Prisons, not the US Attorney or the judge.
In the District of Columbia, people convicted of misdemeanors serve their time in the DC Jail while people convicted of felonies are housed in federal prisons.
Freundel's case is unique because he was convicted of a very large number of misdemeanors that resulted in a 6-1/2-year sentence while the average person convicted of one or two misdemeanors might serve several months or a year in jail.
At any rate, it is clear the US Attorney did nothing to stand in the way of Freundel being moved to a federal prison.
As for his current segregation/solitary confinement, a source close to the case told FailedMessiah.com Freundel was placed in it at his own request because of the threats he says he received from other prisoners. Freundel could choose to leave segregation and rejoin the general prison population whenever he wants to do so, the source said.
Here's the judge's June 9 order asking the BOP to move Freundel to Otisville or Miami. Please click to enlarge: