Famous Rikers Island Inmates
David Berkowitz, the "Son of Sam" serial killer who was arrested in 1977 after a year-long killing spree in New York City, is among the most notorious criminals to have served time in prison on Rikers Island. From July 1976 until he was arrested in August 1977, Berkowitz killed six women and injured several more, leaving cryptic letters at his crime scenes signed by "the Son of Sam." The 24-year-old postal worker from Yonkers pleaded guilty in 1978, saying his neighbor's demonic dog had told him to commit the crimes. Berkowitz enlisted in the army in 1971 and became known as an excellent marksman. After he was arrested, Berkowitz ironically confessed he believed he was a soldier in Satan's army, instructed to target dark-haired women and terrorize the city of New York. He was denied parole in 2002 and remains incarcerated at the Sullivan Correctional Facility in upstate New York.