A Georgetown University Law Center student filed a lawsuit against Georgetown University on Tuesday, in response to the university’s employment of Rabbi Barry Freundel, who was arrested for voyeurism on Oct. 14.

Freundel, who faces six charges of voyeurism for recording devices in women’s private baths at the Kesher Israel Orthodox synagogue in Georgetown, is accused by the suit of luring the unnamed third-year law student to the bath. The suit names the rabbi, the synagogue and Georgetown University as defendants, charging Georgetown with improperly vetting the rabbi before hiring him.

Director of Media Relations Rachel Pugh declined to comment on the litigation but expressed the university’s horror at the allegations against Freundel and its willingness to respond to the situation.

“We are horrified by the behavior reported to have taken place at the mikvah,” Pugh wrote in an email to The Hoya. “The university is cooperating fully with law enforcement activities, as well as conducting our own investigation of Rabbi Freundel’s conduct.”

Freundel had served as an adjunct professor at the law center, teaching a course on Jewish law since the early 1990s. He last co-taught a seminar in the spring of 2014.

The lawsuit alleges that Georgetown “undertook no investigation into Freundel’s background prior to hiring him,” and aims to implicate the university in “willful blindness.” Steven Silverman, the attorney who filed the suit, could not be reached for comment.

In addition to the lawsuit, Freundel faces six criminal charges of voyeurism to which he pled not guilty in October. Freundel will face a D.C. Superior Court hearing Jan. 16.

Have a reaction to this article? Write a letter to the editor.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *