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Jewish Camp Counselor Admits Sexual Abuse

Sheriff's officers handcuffed Kolko and took him to the County Jail.
Yosef Kolko

Yosef Kolko
Photo Credit: National Vanguard

A former counselor at a summer camp run by Yeshiva Bais Hatorah School in Lakewood, N.J., pleaded guilty to aggravated sexual assault, attempted aggravated sexual assault, sexual assault and child endangerment, and state Superior Court Judge Francis R. Hodgson revoked his $125,000 bail.

Yosef Kolko, 39, made the admission on Monday after two more victims, a male and a female, came forward, the Asbury Park Press reported.

Assistant Ocean County Prosecutor Laura Pierro said she was contacted late Friday afternoon by a young woman who claimed she was victimized by Kolko, and the attorney for a young man who also claimed to be a victim. Pierro said she met with the additional victims and would have sought to admit their testimony, had the trial proceeded.

Sheriff’s officers handcuffed Kolko and took him to the County Jail.

Kolko was on trial for sexually abusing a boy, now 16, when he was 11 and 12, in 2008 and 2009. He was calm and unemotional when he admitted committing a variety of sexual acts on the boy.

In exchange for Kolko’s guilty plea, the state would not proceed with additional charges related to the additional victims, ADA Pierro said.

Kolko’s attorney, Michael Bachner, said his client was “extremely remorseful,” apologizes to the victim and hopes after treatment “to return to society as a benefit to it,” The Associated Press reported.

Kolko, who also worked as a teacher at Yeshiva Orchos Chaim in Lakewood, could receive up to 40 years in prison, but Judge Hodgson has said he would consider no more than 15 years, according to the Asbury Park Press.

Before sentencing, Kolko will be evaluated at the state Corrections Department’s Adult Diagnostic and Treatment Center in the Avenel section of Woodbridge to determine if he is a repetitive and compulsive sexual offender, according to the newspaper.

Yori Yanover

About the Author: Yori Yanover has been a working journalist since age 17, before he enlisted and worked for Ba'Machane Nachal. Since then he has worked for Israel Shelanu, the US supplement of Yedioth, JCN18.com, USAJewish.com, Lubavitch News Service, Arutz 7 (as DJ on the high seas), and the Grand Street News. He has published Dancing and Crying, a colorful and intimate portrait of the last two years in the life of the late Lubavitch Rebbe, (in Hebrew), and two fun books in English: The Cabalist's Daughter: A Novel of Practical Messianic Redemption, and How Would God REALLY Vote.


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