Haredi Entertainer Suspected of Molesting Kid

Fan of David Bruckner, who has been arrested on suspicion of sexually harassing 12-year-old boy, says 'people were very surprised when they heard about it, but it wasn't a complete shock'

by Ronen Medzini (Yediot Achronot)
January 8, 2010

Jerusalem's ultra-Orthodox community was surprised by the arrest of haredi entertainer David Bruckner on suspicion of sexually harassing a 12-year-old boy.

One of his fans said Friday, "Everyone knows him. He has released films for haredi children, which have sold hundreds of copies. Some 400 to 500 children attend each of his shows.

According to the fan, Bruckner always spent time with children. "One can definitely say he is an odd and unconventional person. People were very surprised when they heard about this, but it wasn't a complete shock."

Radio host Menachem Toker is one of the people responsible for exposing Bruckner to the haredi community on his radio and internet programs. Every month for 10 years, Bruckner had a regular spot on Toker's show "Hasidishkeit", which includes songs and sermons from rabbis.

"He is a generous person of the first class. Every time I asked him to visit a sick child or a sick family, he always arrived without any hesitations and made them laugh. There hasn't been one instance in which he refused to so," Toker told Ynet.

"As for the offense attributed to him, I was in complete shock when I heard about it. I sincerely hope, for his sake, that it's not true," he added.

Bruckner's remand was extended by four days Thursday. During the court hearing, his lawyer denied the allegations and said that publishing the entertainer's name could harm his livelihood in the future.