fb-pixel Skip to main content

Northeastern professor arrested in prostitution sting

A Northeastern University professor was among seven men who were arrested Thursday in a prostitution sting in Boston’s upscale Back Bay neighborhood, officials said.

Harvey Shapiro, 63, of Needham, was arraigned Friday in Boston Municipal Court on a misdemeanor charge of seeking to engage in sex for a fee, Suffolk District Attorney Daniel F. Conley’s office said. A not-guilty plea was entered on his behalf, and he was released on his own recognizance.

His lawyer, Michael Tumposky, requested in an e-mail that “all interested parties respect the process and reserve judgment until the case is resolved. We will have no further comment until that time.”


Shapiro is listed on a Northeastern website as an associate clinical professor of education.

In a statement, the university said it will “evaluate the entire set of circumstances around the allegations involving Mr. Shapiro and decide on the appropriate personnel action in accordance with our policies.”

According to Conley’s office, Shapiro and six other men allegedly responded to an online advertisement posted by police detectives and negotiated sex for a fee. The men were arrested at locations in the area of Belvedere and Dalton streets where they allegedly arrived to pay for sex.

Four of the other men arrested were also arraigned Friday, including Christopher Otero, 24, of Revere; Robert P. Smith, 75, of the Back Bay; Joshua Sternstein, 32, of Boston; and Brad Watkins, 39, of Dorchester. Booking documents indicated that Watkins works in construction, Otero is a deliveryman, and Sternstein and Smith are both unemployed.

Arraignments for two other men, who were not identified Friday, will be held next month.

Shapiro teaches courses at Northeastern on curriculum design and assessment, and he previously served as dean of the Shoolman Graduate School of Jewish Education at Hebrew College, according to his online biography.

Travis Andersen can be reached at travis.andersen@globe.com. Follow him on Twitter @TAGlobe.