Retired Cheshire rabbi arrested for inappropriate conduct with minor in ’60s

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Meriden — A retired Connecticut rabbi was due in superior court for an extradition hearing Friday morning. Virginia law enforcement officials want him back in their state to answer charges of indecent liberties with a child more than 40 years ago.
Eric Silver, 72,  was arrested at his Willow Brook Drive home in Cheshire on Monday night by U.S. Marshals and Cheshire Police.
Silver faces felony charges in Norfolk, Virginia for the alleged incidents, which took place between 1968 and 1970. Silver was in his mid- to late-20s during the period the alleged incidents occurred. All of the attacks were against one individual.
There is no statute of limitations for the felony charges against Silver under Virginia law. The charges are punishable by a term of imprisonment not less than one year and not more than 10 years, or imprisonment for less than one year and a fine of less than $2,500.
Silver was rabbi at Temple Beth David in Cheshire for 20 years until his retirement in 2010, and is being held at the New Haven Correctional Center without bail.
Silver is scheduled for an extradition hearing Friday at Superior Court in Meriden.
Once extradited, Silver will be charged with three counts of taking indecent liberties with a child under the age of 14, said Amanda Howie, director of communications for the office of the Norfolk commonwealth’s attorney. A Norfolk Circuit Court grand jury issued indictments on the charges in January.
“Hopefully this someone who made a mistake and these actions didn’t happen,” said Steven Farrel, a neighbor of Silver’s who says he was shocked by his arrest. Farrel says Silver is married and the couple has three children in their late 20s and early 30s.
Silver has had three private audiences with popes, the most recent in 2010 with Pope Benedict XVI. Silver is also a veteran of the U.S. Navy and served during Vietnam War. He is listed as a Purple Heart recipient on purpleheart.com.
No further information on the details of the charges were available as of Thursday.