clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:


The state Crime Victims Board said Friday subway gunman Bernhard Goetz is not covered by a law requiring convicted criminals to forfeit money from selling their life stories.

The board ruled that because Goetz was acquitted of most charges stemming from the Dec. 22, 1984, shooting he can keep the money.Under New York's so-called "Son of Sam" law, criminals must turn proceeds of books and movies over to the board which, in turn, distributes the money to their victims.

Goetz, who shot four youths on a crowded subway train because he feared he was about to be robbed, was acquitted last June of assault, attempted murder and reckless endangerment.

He was convicted on one count of criminal possession of a weapon.

The Crime Victims Board said the one-count conviction was not sufficient to trigger the Son of Sam law.

It also said the jury that tried Goetz "determined that the four men shot by Goetz were not crime victims."

The four, all of whom were teenagers at the time of the shooting, had approached Goetz on a subway train and asked him for $5. Goetz pulled an unlicensed pistol from a holster and shot them. One of the boys was paralyzed and brain-damaged as a result.

He was acquitted after a seven-week trial of all but one of the 13 counts against him by a Manhattan jury that included six crime victims.