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Gair, Gair, Conason, Rubinowitz, Bloom, Hershenhorn, Steigman & Mackauf is a New York Plaintiff's personal injury law firm specializing in automobile accidents, construction accidents, medical malpractice, products liability, police misconduct and all types of New York personal injury litigation.

Articles Posted in Sexual Abuse

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John Russel, a New Yorker who has been accused several times of sexually abusing underage girls was arrested last July after an underage Asian-American victim came forward and alleged that the 59 year old man had engaged in oral sex and intercourse with her and a criminal complaint charges him with two felony counts of sexual conduct against a child after he asked the victim to take pictures and record videos of him engaging with another underage girl.

Russell who had a brief career as an actor back in the 80ies and landed parts in Law & Order and a few movies had been a City College of New York researcher. He obviously lost his job however one might question why this man was ever hired to work around teenagers as his history of sexually abusing children goes back to July 1999.

At this time, Russel had moved to a house in Bethel, Vermont, with his wife and two kids.  While they were looking for a baby-sitter, Russel brought a 14 year old girl to his house so she supposedly would get familiar with the place. When she was there Russel undressed her and had sex with her. After they finished he told the girl that if she mentioned what happen between them to anyone he would deny it all and that he would never go to jail because he had children.

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Jerry Harris, one of the stars of the Netflix show “Cheer” has been arrested after he was charged with producing child pornography.  The 21 year old man admitted to the FBI that he had been interacting with several minors on Snapchat asking them to send him pictures and videos of their genitals.

Jerry Harris is also the subject of a lawsuit which was filed 3 days ago on behalf of two twin boys. According to the complaint, Jerry sent them sexually explicit pictures of himself and tried to corner one of them in a bathroom and  asked him to perform oral sex on him.

Jerry Harris became a TV star after the show Netflix “Cheer” started to follow his cheerleading team from Navarro College in Texas in its attempt to win the national title.

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New York Child sexual abuse lawyer Ben Rubinowitzpeter-blog-headshotHollywood Star Kevin Spacey sexually abused two children when they were only 14 years old. As with most pedophiles, Spacey groomed these children, took advantage of their youth and engaged in abusive sexual acts. Spacey’s conduct was not only improper, but it was a crime. “There is no justification for this conduct. These children were underage and had no ability to consent to Spacey’s sexual advances. Simply put, Spacey engaged in acts of, among other things, rape,” said Ben Rubinowitz who, along with Peter Saghir, has been handling cases of sexual abuse for years. “This action has been brought pursuant to New York’s Child Victims Act, a law that was recently passed allowing victims of sexual abuse to bring civil claims against abusers as well as institutions such as schools, churches and camps.  No matter when the abuse occurred, the law currently allows claims for sexual abuse that were once barred by the statute of limitations to be revived and filed through August 14, 2021,” said Saghir.  A copy of the complaint filed against Spacey can be found here.

Our firm is dedicated to representing victims of sexual abuse

Our goal has always been to make sure that victims of sexual abuse receive the justice to which they are entitled. Children, who are often the targets of sexual predators, are frequently afraid to report the abuse out of embarrassment, humiliation and fear of punishment or retaliation. As a result, these crimes have gone unpunished for years as pedophiles and institutions have been able to hide behind statutes of limitations that prevented lawsuits from being filed. “Now that the law has changed and victims of sexual abuse can bring claims in our civil courts, victims of abuse will finally be able to receive justice,” said Rubinowitz. “Our firm will work tirelessly to make sure victims of sexual abuse receive the justice they have been denied for years.”

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Hunter college where several students were allegedly sexually assaultedA 62 year old lab technician at a New York City High school is accused of forcibly kissing a student and propositioning another one for sex before he resigned last year. Asumana Randolph, who has been working for 26 years at Hunter College High School was recently charged with endangering the welfare of a child, sexual abuse and forcible touching. He pleaded not guilty to all charges and was released without bail. His next court hearing is scheduled for November 24.

According to a recent article in the Patch, Randolph, a lab technician and science club adviser, is accused of kissing a student younger than 17 year old on the mouth on multiple occasions and without her consent during the month of February 2019.  Additionally, in October 2018, Randolph propositioned a 17 year old student for sex while the student was in his office.  He told the student that it was not the first time that he had sex with a student. He said that 10 to 15 years ago, he had a relationship with another student and had sexual intercourse at the student’s apartment and that he was looking for a similar relationship.

Randolph was forced to resign in 2019 after the investigation started however his name was still listed on the school’s website until last Friday when the school removed it.

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New York Governor Andrew CuomoVictims of  Child Sexual Abuse in New York have been granted an extra year to file a lawsuit against their offenders independently of when the crime was committed.  In February 2019, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo signed into law the New York Child Victim Act that allows victims of child sexual abuse in New York State to bring a civil claim against their abuser and institution until they turn 55 year old. Victims of child sexual abuse who were older than 55 year old when the Child Victim Act was passed were offered a one year “look-back window” to file a lawsuit against their aggressor and their institution independently of their age and when the abuse occurred.  As the coronarvirus crisis hit the US, the State of New York went into a lock-down period between March and June. All activities slowed down and Court services were limited to essential proceedings.  To make sure all child victims of sexual abuse were provided enough time to bring a civil lawsuit against their abuser, Andrew Cuomo  previously extended the look back window to January 14 202 1 on May 8. (see previous blog). However New York lawmakers felt that the January deadline was not giving enough time to victims to seek compensation and last June they unanimously agreed and signed a bill to extend the look-back window to August 14 2021. The bill was signed yesterday by Andrew Cuomo. “As New York continues to reopen and recover from a public health crisis, extending the look back window is the right thing to do and will help ensure that abusers and those who enabled them are held accountable” Governor Cuomo said.

Since the Child Victim Acts was signed on February 14 2019, more than 3000 victims of child sexual abuse came forward and filed a lawsuit against their abuser as well as the institution that allowed the abuse to happen

A large bulk of the lawsuits were filed against various New York dioceses of the Catholic Church. New York Public Schools and other children institutions such as scouts and camps have also been been sued.

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A catholic priest from New York City has been arrested after sharing pornographic material with a 15-year-old boy. Rev Francis Hughes was arrested yesterday morning by the FBI after he allegedly shared sexually explicit text messages and pictures with a teenager from Westchester. The FBI found half a dozen pictures that the priest and the boy exchanged since last February. The FBI also indicated that they connected several times on “Grindr”, a dating app for gay, bi and trans people. The priest asked the teen “How would you like to be spoiled by your grandpa?” and suggested to make the relationship “a regular thing”.

The 65 year old priest told the FBI that he knew that the boy was underage. He also admitted that he previously met a teen boy on school ground in Queens and had sex with him. He also tried multiple times to have sexual relationships with other boys.

Father Francis Hughes was removed from his post of pastor at the St. Pancras Roman Catholic Church in Glendale, Queens.

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LoryProfessorDanielPollackPeer on peer child sexual abuse occurs when a child sexually abuses another child. In the US, States and even regions have different views and legislation when it comes to defining “peers” and if a sexual act between teenagers is consensual and legal or punishable.  In a recent article in Youth Today, Daniel Pollack M.S.S.A. (M.S.W.), Esq., a professor at the School of Social Work, Yeshiva University, New York City and Lori S. Kornblum, Esq. an adjunct faculty member at Marquette University Law School and an instructor at Milwaukee Area Technical College (Paralegal Department) explain why the law and terminology should be standardized when if comes to  sexual activities among teenagers.

While it is quite common for teenagers to have a sexual relationship with each other, their relationship can be legal or illegal depending in which state it occurs.  In many states teens under a certain age are unable to consent and sexual activity under that age is criminalized as “statutory rape”. The age of consent often varies between 16 and 18 year old. However because many teenagers below the age of consent are having sexual relationships, many States have adopted “Romeo and Juliet” laws that decriminalize sex between two teens as long as it stays between a specific age-gap, The age-gap however differs from one State to the other and can go from 2 years to 6 years. The age-gap laws only apply if the sex was consensual between both teens and no violence is involved.

According to the authors of the article the age-gap laws tend to make more uniform the manner how similar aged teens having a sexual relationship are prosecuted or not and put in place general community standards in regards to this particular behavior. The age-gap laws tend to standardize punishment but don’t address larger issues and questions such as whether  older teens should have sex with pre-teens.

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A NYPD school safety agent was arrested for sexually abusing a child within the confines of the 90th Precinct in Brooklyn. The police announced on Monday that 43 year old Jeanisidor Jean Baptiste  was arrested in Brooklyn, NYC, for child sexual abuse. The arrest was the result of an internal investigation by the NYPD that found that the school safety agent sexually abused a young family member for years. The abuse started when the victim was 5 year old and lasted 4 years. The victim who is now 17 year old was sexually assaulted multiple times between 2008 and 2012, including at the Flatbush home of the predator.

The school safety agent was charged with rape, sexual abuse, predatory sexual assault against a child, forcible touching, endangering the welfare of a child, course of sexual conduct against a child, and criminal sexual act.

Read more in the NY Daily News

 

 

 

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Linda Rosenthal Sponsor of the NY Child Victim Act
Child sexual abuse victims in New York State and their advocates are expecting Governor Cuomo to sign a bill extending the Child Victims Act look-back window to August 14 2021.

The NY Child Victim Act was enacted on August 14 2019, allowing victims of child sexual abuse to bring a lawsuit against their abusers until the victim reaches the age of 55 year old. For those who are older than 55 year old and suffered sexual abuse in their childhood, the new law came with a one year look-back window during which any child sexual abuse victim in New York State, no matter their actual age and when the abuse occured, could file a lawsuit against their oppressor and/or the institution that hired them such as religious institutions, schools, boy scouts, etc.

Court services reduced to essential proceedings online during Coronavirus lock-down prevented child sexual abuse victims to file a lawsuit

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helpWell before the passage of the Child Victims Act, the child sexual abuse attorneys at Gair, Gair, Conason, Rubinowitz, Bloom, Hershenhorn, Steigman & Mackauf have been fighting for justice on behalf of victims of sexual abuse.  Our top results speak to our commitment to ensuring survivors of sexual abuse receive justice.

It is for these reasons that we support the recent extension of time to January 14, 2021, for survivors of child sexual abuse to file a claim for monetary damages against their abusers and the institutions that allowed the abuse to happen.

In 2019, the New York State legislature enacted the Child Victims Act (“CVA”).  Before the CVA was passed, survivors of child sexual abuse had a very limited period of time (known as a statute of limitation) in which to bring a civil lawsuit against their abusers.  The CVA did two important things: (1) extended the statute of limitations for civil claims, allowing survivors to file a claim until they are 55 years old; and (2) opened up a one year “look-back” window that allowed victims whose sexual abuse claims were previously barred by the old statute of limitations, to file suit.  This one year “look back” which was supposed to expire on August 14, 2020 has been extended by Governor Andrew Cuomo from August 14, 2020 until January 14, 2021.  Our New York sexual abuse attorneys are eager to continue to fight on behalf of survivors of sexual abuse and help them secure compensation that will ensure they are protected for life.