Mental health of Y.U.’s Lamm to be evaluated for sex abuse case

(JTA) — A doctor will evaluate the condition of former Yeshiva University president Norman Lamm’s mental health to determine whether he should be questioned in a $380 million sex abuse lawsuit.

Federal Judge John Koeltl on Monday ruled that a doctor should be chosen by both Yeshiva University and former students of Y.U. institutions who are suing the school alleging that they were sexually abused between 1976 and 2003, when Lamm was chancellor, The New York Daily News reported.

The lawsuit, filed by 19 former students of the Yeshiva University High School for Boys in Manhattan, names top members of Y.U.’s former administration, including Lamm.

In July in a letter announcing his retirement, Lamm, 85, acknowledged mishandling the abuse allegations decades earlier. He apologized for not alerting police when he learned of the abuse accusations. He also indicated that he may be suffering from a decline in his mental acuity.

Lawyers for the students say they want to depose Lamm as soon as possible due to fears that his mental status could deteriorate, according to The Forward, which first published details of the claims against two former Yeshiva University staff members late last year.

New York’s statute of limitations prevents abuse victims bringing claims after they turn 23. But the students’ lawyers have claimed that the limitations would not apply in the Y.U. case since the institution covered up the complaints and allowed the teachers to leave the institution and find new jobs, according to The Forward.