MIAMI BEACH, Fla. – Surveillance video has surfaced that may show a South Florida rabbi accused of inappropriately touching an 11-year-old girl, giving a parent an envelope believed to contain money to stay quiet over the entire ordeal.
The video, taken from a Miami Beach restaurant, appears to show a man who witnesses identified as Rabbi Steve Karro, sitting next to a woman and handing her an envelope.
The woman’s child, according to Miami Beach Police, was molested by Karro. They said he kissed the girl on the neck and touched her backside.
A closer look at the video appears to show a child who was with the mother walking up to the rabbi to give him a hug. That child is not the one who accused Karro of molesting her. There then appears to be an exchange of an envelope.
The mother told her attorney, and those she works with, that there was, in fact, money inside, which she later turned over to the police. “I’ve seen the video, and certainly it raises some very big concerns,” said the mother’s attorney, Jeff Herman.
The exchange, according to witnesses, took place days before Karro would be arrested for allegedly molesting the girl at his Miami Beach art studio.
After being released from jail shortly after his arrest, Karro said, “It’s love, harmony, cleansing. Nothing else.”
“Frankly, I’m disgusted by the reaction of the Miami Beach Jewish community,” said Herman. “From what I understand from the mother, is that she has been ostracized from parts of the community. Rabbis have advised her to stay silent.”
Karro’s attorney said he was unaware of the newly-discovered surveillance video and could not comment.
Herman, who has represented numerous victims suing the Catholic Church over alleged abuse, said he is seeing many of the same problems in the Jewish community. “To make them feel re-victimized is wrong,” he said. “It reminds me about scandals we’ve seen with other clergy abuse cases in this country.”
The Miami Beach Police Department said they will continue to investigate the totality of this case, and they do not comment on open investigations as not to jeopardize the case.