Mere community service ruled for ex-police chief charged with sex crimes

Prosecution to appeal after serious charges thrown out

Nisso Shacham 390 (photo credit: Marc Israel Sellem/The Jerusalem Post)
Nisso Shacham 390
(photo credit: Marc Israel Sellem/The Jerusalem Post)
Ex-Jerusalem Police chief Nisso Shaham was sentenced to mere community service by the Tel Aviv District Court on Monday despite an original charge sheet containing serious sex crimes allegations against female officers under his command.
The prosecution was expected to appeal both the acquittals and the lenient sentence.
The 240 hours of community service and no jail time was somewhat foreshadowed by the court’s decision in April to acquit Shaham of many of the more serious sex crimes he was accused of, but still led to an outcry by a women’s support group.
Association of Rape Crisis Center CEO Orit Soliciano responded saying, “the sentence given to Nisso Shaham is shocking, outrageous and inconceivable. Shaham used his authority systematically and repeatedly to exploit young and junior female officers who were in difficult circumstances and needed his help.”  
Soliciano especially attacked the court’s explanation that it would give Shaham a lenient sentence due to his public service whereas she said that his senior law enforcement role meant he should get a more severe punishment.
She added that a recent survey by the authority for advancement of the status of women found that 66% of women have experienced some level of sexual harassment while only around 5% ever report it.
In that light, she said it was unconscionable that when brave women came forward, that men who had sexually assaulted them should get off with a slap on the wrist.
Shaham beat most of the charges by admitting to many instances of sexual intimacy with junior officers, but convincing the court that the encounters had been consensual or at the very least ambiguous.
He implied that he might even appeal the single conviction for indecent assault in which the court said he kissed one of the junior officers against her will.
In October 2013, Shaham resigned his post after he was indicted for sex crimes against multiple female officers who worked under his command.