Probation for men who robbed Hasidic developer in Monroe – Times Herald-Record

Posted By on December 18, 2019

GOSHEN Two Orthodox Jewish men were sentenced on Wednesday to probation for robbing a Hasidic developer in March outside Monroe Town Hall.

Moses Hirsch, 31, and Shlome Katz, 32, both with Monroe addresses, each pleaded guilty to third-degree robbery, a felony, in the case.

The morning of March 28, developer Herman Wagschal went to Town Hall to file a petition as part of an effort he helped organize to create the Village of Seven Springs next to Kiryas Joel. Hirsch and Katz belong to a deeply religious Hasidic anti-Zionist group that believes Jews should not participate in politics, or form villages or governments until the Messiah returns. They assailed Wagschal from behind outside Town Hall, striking him and causing him to fall to the ground. Prosecutors say Katz ran into Town Hall with Wagschal's phone, and Hirsch fled with the petition, which he destroyed.

On Wednesday in Orange County Court, Assistant District Attorney Jessica Dovico asked Judge William DeProspo to sentence each defendant to six months in jail and five years of probation, with Katz to pay $900 in restitution.

Katz and Hirsch's lawyers, Michael McDonagh and Daniel Castricone, asked for probation. Neither man has a prior criminal record, they argued. Katz has a wife and six children that he supports.

Neither man intended for the confrontation to unfold as it did, the lawyers said, and both of them deeply regret the confrontation turned physical.

DeProspo said he took into consideration the religious beliefs that underpinned the men's actions, but noted that they turned your good intentions into something that was pretty ugly.

But he said Katz and Hirsch appear to pose no risk to the community. He imposed 5-year probation sentences on each of them, plus $375 in fees and surcharges, and ordered Katz to pay $900 restitution. He issued orders of protection in favor of Wagschal.

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Probation for men who robbed Hasidic developer in Monroe - Times Herald-Record

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