BOSTON, Aug. 1, 2012—A former Brighton resident who worked as a religious teacher in Brookline today admitted to all of the charges accusing him of improper sexual contact with children in his care during more than 30 years ago, Suffolk County District Attorney Daniel F. Conley announced.
Rabbi STANLEY LEVITT (D.O.B. 4/4/46), most recently of Philadelphia, pleaded guilty as his trial on four counts of indecent assault and battery on a child was set to begin. He faces sentencing tomorrow morning.
“This is a victory not just for the victims in this case, but for every person who suffered abuse at the hands of a trusted adult,” Conley said. “The defendant’s full admission of guilt is proof that the men he abused as children were telling the truth when they finally shared their terrible secret.”
Had the case proceeded to trial, Assistant District Attorney David Deakin would have introduced evidence and testimony to show that Levitt had improper sexual contact with three sixth-grade boys during the mid-1970s.
Conley’s office first indicted Levitt in 2009 after two victims disclosed that Levitt had assaulted them during the time that they were students at the Brookline school where he taught from 1974 to 1977.
In one incident, a student had been hospitalized after injuring his hand in an accident and was recuperating at Children’s Hospital in Boston. Levitt went to visit him in his hospital room and assaulted him. The second victim was assaulted twice during the course of a weekend visit to Levitt’s former residence on Chiswick Road while the boy’s parents were out of town. Both of the boys were assaulted in 1975.
In the aftermath of those indictments, a third victim came forward after reading media accounts of the case. His abuse took place during the 1975-1976 academic year, when he was a student at the Brookline school and attended a sleepover at Levitt’s home. In that case, Levitt assaulted the boy after instructing him to take a shower before bed.
Conley spearheaded efforts to eliminate the statute of limitations on child sexual abuse after repeatedly learning of older cases that could not be prosecuted because – as with all three of the children in the Levitt case – the victims did not disclose their abuse until decades later.
In 2006, those efforts paid off in significant part when the statute of limitations on child sexual abuse was extended from 15 years to 27 years.
It was a different aspect of the law, however, that allowed prosecutors to pursue the charges against Levitt, Conley said. When Levitt left Massachusetts, the clock on the statute of limitations stopped, allowing prosecutors to pursue the charges.
Kate Lagana was the DA’s assigned victim-witness advocate on the case. Levitt was represented by attorney Scott Curtis. Judge Geraldine Hines will sentence him tomorrow at 11:00 a.m. in courtroom 808 of Suffolk Superior Court.
All defendants are presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.