Camp Shalva Lawyer: No Abuse Confirmed At This Time

By Sndy Eller (Vos Iz Neias)
August 16, 2012

As rumors continue to swirl regarding possible child molestation that may have taken place last week at Camp Shalva in South Fallsburg, New York, the camp’s lawyer could only confirm that the matter is under investigation by authorities.

As previously reported on VIN News, a delivery person was captured on video surveillance tapes entering bunk houses in the early morning hours, where groups of young boys were sleeping.

While numerous media reports criticized the camp for waiting several hours after learning of the incident before contacting the authorities, David Scharf defended his client’s actions.

“By the time the camp learned of the incident, the individual involved was already off premises, so calling 911 would not have helped them apprehend anyone. The camp administration interviewed the children and the staff members and began reviewing the security tapes,” Scharf told VIN News.

“Once we got back information that the person involved was allegedly a level two sex offender out of Rockland County, the camp made the determination that an internal camp investigation was no longer sufficient and they contacted law enforcement.”

According to Scharf, no determination has been made yet if any charges of either trespass or child abuse will be filed in the case.

“It is an ongoing investigation and we are as much in the dark as the media,” said Scharf. “The only information that we can confirm is that an incident of trespass occurred.”

While Scharf believes that no molestation actually occurred, he was quick to point out that that determination can only be made by officials who are investigating the case.

“Calling in law enforcement was the prudent decision,” added Scharf. “They are doing their thing, reviewing the security tapes, interviewing people in the camp and are speaking to the Rockland County prosecutor’s office, something the camp administration would not be able to do.”

Scharf defended the camp’s administration general handling of the situation saying that they are being unfairly portrayed by the media.

“They are being crucified for having waited so long, assuming that there was hard information that kids were molested, but that is a fallacy,” said Scharf, who noted that he didn’t know any camp in existence that asks each vendor to confirm that none of their delivery people are registered offenders.

“Even registered offenders are allowed to be employed once they are no longer incarcerated,” said Scharf. “Should the supplier having him driving to a boy’s camp? That is a totally different question.”

The delivery person in questions is an employee of the Spring Valley based Golden Taste. A spokesperson for Golden Taste told VIN News that they have no comment at this time.

The Sullivan County District Attorney’s office has confirmed to VIN News that they are investigating the incident.