Plea Deal in Alleged Rabbi Molestation Case

Rabbi Steve Karro was arrested nine months ago and accused of one count of lewd and lascivious molestation of a child under 12. On Thursday, he walked away from that felony charge.

"Hopefully it will never happen again. God forbid that it happen again to another child. I did my best," the victim's mother said.

The child told her mother the rabbi had been alone with her in his art gallery. She said the rabbi touched her buttocks, stroked her hair and kissed her neck, saying he was doing a cleansing.

"Who does this to children without their parents' knowledge and consent?" said the victim's mother.

But prosecutors said they didn't have any substantial evidence to prove that Rabbi Karro molested the 11-year old girl. The plea deal was partly based on two polygraph tests, exclusively obtained by NBC 6, saying "there was no deception" by the rabbi; it was basically her word against his.

"As a rabbi, a leader in the community and someone who could be trusted, yet perverting that trust to satisfy his sexual and inappropriate touching of my child," the mother said.

Despite the mother's rejection of the plea deal, the judge did accept it, dropping the charges to misdemeanor battery.

"There's no sexual misconduct that took place here. So, I respect the presumption of innocence and I hope you will too," said Karro's defense attorney, Jeffrey Weiner.

Rabbi Karro will be on probation for nine months, can't spend time with minors unsupervised and has to stay away from the victim and her mother.

After his probation, if no new allegations are made and the rabbi complies with the court's orders, his record will be cleared.

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