Friday, June 23, 1978

Berkowitz Outbursts Disrupt Court; Sentencing Put Off, Tests Ordered

David R. Berkowitz, who was scheduled to be sentenced yesterday for the six “Son of Sam” murders, battled officers before entering the courtroom, then walked in chanting, “Stacy was a whore.”

The courtroom erupted in turmoil and, only minutes later, he was dragged out by half a dozen officers.

Neya M. heard him chanting and cried out, “You’re an animal!” and ran out of the courtroom. “That’s right. That’s right,” Berk shouted after her. “I’d kill her again. I’d kill them all again!”

Robert Violante jumped up shouting, “You should get killed, you creep!” (His vision is limited to four feet in the one eye that has vision). He collapsed in his seat sobbing.

Those who had observed the .44-caliber killer during earlier court appearances were shocked. He had always seemed pleasant, polite, even slightly repentant, they said. But when he was dragged into the courtroom yesterday, his face was flushed, his eyes distended wildly and his forehead smeared with dirt. His light blue suit – the same one he had worn in other court appearances – was rumpled and soiled.

Later a young friend of the M. family, Daniel Carrique shouted out, “That’s no justice! What about the families? How much do you think they can take?”

Carrique was led from the courtroom by guards. Judge Joseph Corso was visibly angered. “I trust I am presiding in an American court to dispense justice. I will not be influenced by any public clamor.”

Excerpt from June 23, 1978 New York Times

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