NEW HAVEN – A man accusing a prominent New Haven rabbi of sexual assault has issued a subpoena that would require the rabbi’s wife to testify.
Eliyahu Mirlis, now 28, filed a complaint in federal court in May alleging that Rabbi Daniel Greer had sexually assaulted him while he was a student at Yeshiva of New Haven and The Gan School in the early 2000s. Greer was the rabbi, school principal, chief administrator, president, director and treasurer of the school at the time of the alleged abuse.
The school, F.O.H. Inc, Edgewood Village Inc., and Edgewood Elm Village Inc. are also named in the lawsuit.
Mirlis filed an intent to subpoena Greer’s wife, Sarah, on Dec. 1, according to court records.
The subpoena states that Sarah Greer would be required to provide a deposition on Dec. 12. The deposition will be video recorded at the offices of Antonio Ponvert III of the Bridgeport-based firm of Koskoff, Koskoff & Bieder, according to the document.
Ponvert is representing Mirlis in this case and said that deposition of Greer’s wife would be an important part of the investigation into what happened to his client more than 10 years ago.
“It is important for me and for my client to investigate the case as thoroughly as possible, as long as the defendants are going to claim that they are innocent,” Ponvert said.
William Ward, Greer’s attorney, said that the defendant’s wife will comply with the request to testify and he said he will not instruct her not to answer any questions posed by the plaintiff’s attorney.
However, Ward said he would object if any questions addressed privacy or intimacy of Sarah Greer’s relationship with her husband.
Ward accused the plaintiff’s desire to question Greer’s wife as an attempt to “harass and try to embarrass her.”
Mirlis, who now lives in New Jersey, alleges that Greer sexually assaulted him on several occasions while he was student, and Mirlis had been forced to participate in sexual acts, watch pornography, and had been given alcohol by Greer.
The complaint in this case alleges that some of the abuse happened on school property, in motels, in other properties owned by the school and in Greer’s home.
The alleged abuse began when Mirlis was 15 years old. Greer was in his 60s at that time, the complaint stated.
U.S. Magistrate Judge Donna F. Martinez in Hartford last month granted Ponvert’s motion to compel Greer to produce documents that have not been provided yet during discovery.
Ward said he and Greer would be meeting this week to produce the documentation.
“We owe some discovery in this case, but some of the requests were quite voluminous,” Ward said.
“My client does not intend to settle,” Ward added.