A Brooklyn fishmonger was arrested for throwing a cup of bleach in the face of a Chasidic rabbi who advocates for victims of sexual abuse in the haredi Orthodox community.
Meilech Schnitzler, 36, of Williamsburg, turned himself in to police on Wednesday afternoon, the New York Times reported. He was charged with felony assault, misdemeanor assault, menacing, criminal mischief and criminal possession of a weapon.
Rabbi Nuchem Rosenberg on Tuesday was walking down the street in the Williamsburg neighborhood of Brooklyn, where he lives, when a man approached him from behind, tapped him on his shoulder and then threw a chemical believed to be bleach in his face, according to reports.
Rosenberg, 62, was treated for burns on his face, around his eyes and in his left eye. He is expected to make a full recovery.
The rabbi runs a website and blog for sex-abuse victims, as well as a telephone hot line.
Rosenberg reportedly had recognized his assailant, who comes from the Satmar Hasidic community, as does Rosenberg. He had accused Schnitzler’s father on his blog of being a sexual predator, according to the New York Times. The man has not been arrested or charged with a crime.
The issue of sex abuse in the community has been in the spotlight this week with the conviction of unlicensed therapist Nechemya Weberman on a string of sex abuse charges involving a girl during a three-year period.