NEW YORK – "Son of Sam" serial killer David Berkowitz has settled a lawsuit in which he accused his former lawyer of stealing and profiting from his personal property, including his bar mitzvah photos and his typewriter.
Berkowitz's current lawyer, Mark Jay Heller, said Thursday that the former attorney, Hugo Harmatz, agreed to return copies of letters Berkowitz wrote and received, photographs, court papers, a typewriter he used in prison, and other items. Berkowitz had given the materials to the attorney for safekeeping.
Berkowitz, 52, sued in June 2005 after he learned Harmatz was using the materials to produce a self-published book titled "Dear David ...."
Heller said that Berkowitz is going to get his property back and that Harmatz has agreed to give profits from the book to the state Crime Victims Board.
Harmatz's lawyer, Shelley Albert, called the deal fair and said her client was "very pleased" with it. The settlement awaits approval from a judge.
Berkowitz, born Jewish and now a Christian, is serving six sentences of 25 years to life for killing six people and wounding seven — most of them young people in parked cars in Brooklyn, the Bronx and Queens — over nearly a year starting July 29, 1976. The spree made people in the city afraid to go out at night.
Berkowitz, a former postal employee, and his crimes were the subject of the Spike Lee movie "Summer of Sam." He got his nickname from the signature on a series of bizarre letters sent to New York newspapers, calling himself "Son of Sam."
Berkowitz left a note at the sixth crime scene that read: "I am a monster. I am the Son of Sam." Sam Carr, a Berkowitz neighbor, had a dog through which Berkowitz claimed he got he demonic orders to kill.