Friday, October 02, 2009

David Letterman's Extortionist Identified


That didn't take long. Last night during his show, David Letterman told the world that he had testified before a grand jury yesterday. He had done so because police had arrested a man for allegedly extorting money from Letterman because of a series of sexual relationships he had with co-workers. The relationships occurred before he was married or his son was born, but while he was living with his current wife.

The man arrested in the plot was named today and he is a producer for 48 Hours named Robert Halderman. Halderman lives with one of the women (Stephanie Birkitt - see photo above)Letterman had an affair with and she still works on the show. Halderman needed money and so tried to extort $2M from Letterman who immediately went to the police. When Dave gave a fake $2M check to Halderman the suspect was arrested.

It sucks that Dave has been cheating for years and years and years. I mean when you like a guy you would like him to be decent and apparently he isn't if he has been having a string of affairs for years and years. And with co-workers which makes it even worse because then you wonder if they felt pressured to have sex with him or face losing their jobs. People might say it takes guts to go to the cops or say all of this to a national audience on your show, but honestly, it was going to come out in the next few days anyway. All Letterman did was release it on his own terms so he could reduce the damage. All the focus now is on the extortion plot and not all of his affairs.

52 comments:

SisterMaryHotPantz said...
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Goodgrief said...

I always liked Dave and thought he had a tad bit more morals than that. A string of affairs with your underlings, is just all sorts of wrong.

hello kitty said...

You sound like such a prude! If you only knew what goes on in the not so fame filled world I work in -- the coworker hook-ups, threesomes in the office after hours, manufactured e-mails to create tension and turmoil.... Soap operas pale in comparison!!

SisterMaryHotPantz said...

You act as though Dave committed the crime. He had sex with females that he worked with, and he wasnt married.

Why is Dave getting the shits from you because peeps are focusing on the blackmailer instead of the affairs?

mygeorgie said...

Kitty-you work for the Federal Government, right?

mygeorgie said...

Sister-'married with papers' or common-law, the committment is the same, or at least it should be.

k said...

The affairs in and of themselves are between him and his wife. I'm wondering though, given that they all involved underlings in the workplace (and young ones, judging from that photo), if there wasn't some kind of quid-pro-quo going on where you had to be one of 'Dave's girls' to get ahead over there. That, to me, is a problem.

Bitter Queen said...

It's not clear to me that "Dave has been cheating for years and years." Cheating on whom? Apparently the affairs happened before he was married, were consensual, etc. Ideally, affairs wouldn't happen in the workplace and would never happen between those in power and those with less power, but that's not the way the world works.

Quintessential Southerner said...

if he did not force these women, then i can still like him as an ENTERTAINER.

surfer said...

When you spend most of your days with co-workers, becoming involved with them is not unusual.

This all took place a long time ago, when Dave wasn't married. The only one he has to answer to is his wife, who was his girlfriend back then. His old, long-time girlfriend, Merrill Markoe (sp?) was a writer on his show.

I'm not a fan of airing one's dirty laundry in public, and obviously Dave's admission last night was a smart pr move which I think took a lot of courage on his part considering he's a very private guy, but let's remember, someone was trying to blackmail him. Which is a crime.

So I say kudos to him for going to the DA, testifying, and going public with something that should have been a private matter.

Drcocks said...

I agree with Enty about the inappropriate nature of having sex with someone who works for you. I am old enough to have had plenty of experience dealing with nasty remarks, inappropriate touching and overt sexual advances in my career to find it disgusting. When I was younger I was even pressured into sexual encounters with bosses in order to keep my job. So yeah, he is a creep, no matter how much he wants us to believe it was consensual. Not that far from claiming sex with an underage child was consensual. The fact he was with his current wife is not important, the act of screwing a subordinate is.

Quintessential Southerner said...

halderman threw away his tv career to blackmail a big star. smh.

can we say blackballed?

Ms Cool said...

I have to admit that I like Letterman. Until I know the circumstances (I read the affair finished before his son was born and before he was married), I'm not going to be mad yet. We don't know if his relationship with his wife was on/off before they married.

That said, it is a bit seedy to be having an affair with his assistant. It makes things pretty muddy, if not seedy.

libby said...

There are many, many different definitions of marriage. Just because any one of OUR personal definitions does not include cheating, maybe Regina knew and was okay with it. Maybe she had affairs too. None of our business. Totally between them.

Btw, Dave was well-known for fucking pages when he worked at NBC. Nobody ever filed a complaint, no one was coerced. Just adult fun & games. If he had EVER threatened someone's job over it, you know somebody would have sued in the last 20 years. It's way too easy to get a big settlement check.

So Dave has sex, likes the ladies? Big deal! At least he keeps his business HIS business. It was only this extortionist that made Dave have to talk about his personal life.

Eddie said...

I remember that girl from the show. She used to do funny little bits.

linnea said...

Do you not think though, that it will make it kind of hard for him to make the same kind of jokes that he used to? I mean, the way he made fun of clinton sleeping with his intern... I just dont see how he can make that work again

Sis said...

I agree with EL, he was with his girlfriend/now wife for 23 years, although I am glad he admitted to the sexual relationships I was totally disgusted when the audience clapped for him admitting his affairs and thus the attention going on to the extortion plot. I thought he was truly one of the good guys on tv and in the workplace playing the non sexual game, I was wrong.

Sue Ellen Mishkey said...

The good thing is that most people have short memories, so they'll forget about this in a month's time. Then he can go back to making jokes about sleeping with interns.

Bad Fish said...

Why is it suddenly ok because he wasn't married? he's been with his partner for years and years, so he was still cheating, whether or not they were married.

Bad Fish said...

Also, I love how you guys just flip back and forth on cheating depending upon who did it. Anyone else and you'd be talking about what an asshole or a whore they are and how much cheaters suck, but its Dave, so, Oh well we don't know what the relationship status between them was. Give me a break.

linnea said...

Hey, Bad Fish, I am totally with you here. I really have no patience with cheaters, but thats just me.

*girl said...

Linnea, Dave has never help himself out to be a standard of morality, as the politicians often do. He'll keep making the jokes and you can be sure that he'll throw one or two in about himself along the way.

The reason this cheating has illicited differing responses than normal is because the cheating is presumably over and they've stayed together instead of him leaving. We don't know who knew and when; but in my thoughts she probably knew and when the child came along things changed for him. Most men don't get married after 20+ years of dating.

Sue Ellen Mishkey said...

I completely agree with Badfish on this one. It's so, so, so, so SO true what she/he/they said. SO TRUE!!

jax said...

for all we know the wife knew about it and decided to marry anyway. dave could have confessed this to her long before they married and had a kid.
a lot of shit can happen before you get to the alter.

this was to tarnish his image,not ruin his marriage from what i'm reading.

SisterMaryHotPantz said...

You all live in a fishbowl.

I bet the blackmailer's attorney would love to have you on his jury. Sheesh, you would aquit the guy because GodForbid someone had a consensual relationship with a co-worker. David deserved to be blackmailed.

Stephanie still works on Dave's show unless they fired her over night. The blackmailer is her Boyfriend. No word on whether she knew what was going on.

B626 said...

For David Letterman it would be high end hookers or this-coworkers you are all ready aquainted with.

How else is a mega famous guy going to have casual relationships before he's married?

I forgive him
for not being perfect.

Halderman, you extorted up the wrong money tree!!

Stephen said...

I predict that there will be at least one, if not more, sexual harrassment suits against Dave and CBS. All of the women, whether coerced or not, will not be able to fight the urge for big $$ now that it is all coming out into the open. Dave will probably be gone, if not by the end of the month, at least by the end of the year.

nancer said...

so what? he was in a very on/off relationship with his current wife for years. i'm sure this isn't big news to her, but really, she's the only one who counts here.

dave's never claimed to be a paragon of virtue as far as i know. this was a shitty thing to do, and he handled it the only way he could. i predict there will be zero repercussions for him with his fans--and i count myself among them.

__-__=__ said...

You just don't have sex with "underlings". No matter what. There will surely be lawsuits. I hope CBS has plenty of money! Do you have CBS stock? Do you want to pay for this? I sure wouldn't! It's just not good business.

Cheryl said...

hello kitty,

You wouldn't believe what went on at the Cracker Barrel I worked at years ago. Sex and drugs in the bathroom, sex in the manager's office, pot in the gift shop, pills on the grill line, drunken orgies....

Sylvia said...
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Sylvia said...

I never cared for David Letterman or his show. One thing for sure if you have a committment with someone whether you are married or not you have a committment. Some of these guys come on TV saying how much they love their partner and bam they get caught in their lies.

Cindy said...

I wonder why celebrities are held to such a higher standard than the rest of us? If your best friend cheated on his/her girlfriend, would you care? Does it really matter in your world whether or not David Letterman cheated on his?

J-Mo said...

Cheating? His current wife was with a commitment-phobe for over 20yrs and you don't think they sometimes separated or saw other people? Maybe she didn't want to be married to him anyway until they decided on a child. We nothing nothing about their relationship, so please give her some credit people! and Stephanie Birkett too, she's not a child. So Dave had sex with people where he practically lives, where else do we meet people we become involved with? Please give the women in this story more credit, I would try to date Dave if he was a colleague and his most-of-the-time significant other wasn't under the impression he was monogamous.

k said...

One other thing-- if there was a quid-pro-quo going on, the women may or may not sure-- or the EEOC might investigate as well. CBS is certainly big enough to be bound by federal law.

Again, I don't think the infidelity is the big story here, and I'm wondering if that truly was what the blackmail was over.

And if the quid-pro-quo WAS going on, and somebody sues, it's not because they have a chance to strike it rich. It's a chance to punish a bad employer by making them hurt in the only place it counts. I don't like the claim that people only enforce their rights because they're money-grubbing opportunists.

ardleigh said...

Well I think it's pretty stupid to defecate where you eat. You think Prez. Clinton would have taught him better.

mygeorgie said...

Sis- I have rewatched Dave's delivery 7 the ensuing applauds. I think people were clapping & laughing because Dave delivered the info in his usual manner, dead pan style, they were caught off guard & perhaps even nervous for him. Just an idea.

I doubt he got the same reaction when he fessed up to the Ms/Mrs. :/

Little Miss Smoke and Mirrors said...

Somewhere out there, Merrill Markoe is laughing her ass off.

BlahFrickinBlah said...

A celebrity fucked someone other than their girlfriend/spouse? shocking!

Someone banged someone at work? Again, shocking! People fucking the boss to get ahead? No way!!!

Where do you people live? I'm not saying it's right but this is hardly shocking. What is shocking is how stupid this dude is for trying to get money out of Dave like this! What a maroon!

Judi said...

Yup, it was stupid for him (or anyone for that matter) to schtupp a subordinate, but if their jobs were threatened in any way or actions that would constitute harassment, there would have already been lawsuits and we would have already heard about it.
No one "deserves" to have a crime committed against them.

IndigoBlue said...

Speaking from experience, it is possible to be a consenting partner in a sexual affair with your boss, and not feel pressured into it or in fear of your job afterwards. If you work in a profession when you spend a LOT of time with people, it's natural for connections to be made. I wasn't the boss, I was the employee..and it all was fine....and I'm a big girl and it didn't scar me for life in any way. There wasn't a cheating element, but I have to say, when someone doesn't marry you for 23 years, you have to kinda have a CLUE that he may not be all that committed....just sayin...

AnnMarie said...

@BadFish, I would say that the reason people "flip back and forth" isn't always based on who the person involved is, but hopefully on the circumstances surrounding each situation.
I like Dave on his show, but it seems plain to me he made a bad business decision in sleeping with a subordinate, and possibly an unethical one, too. (Imbalance of power, etc.)
As for cheating, Dave's done well until now about keeping the inner workings of his private life kind of private - so I have no clue or strong opinion about that.

Heather said...

Regina knew, and has known for some time. She was the one that had to tell Dave's mother that this was going to come out in the news. From what I hear she is "okay" with it.

Merrill Markoe worked for him when they got together. Regina worked for him when they got together -- very shortly afterward. She knew what she was getting into.

But the real point is, we don't know. It's their business. They've obviously been together a long time. She had plenty of opportunities to leave if it bothered her. Maybe he cheated and she forgave him. Maybe he sleeps around and she's okay with it, or at least tacitly condones it by looking the other way. Or maybe they have an open relationship. It happens plenty these days. But we don't know. Who's to say they don't have an "arrangement" that they're *both* okay with? It's a private matter between consenting adults.

The fact that people are going on about how we're overlooking the OMG INFIDELITY are really missing the point.

mygeorgie said...

"when someone doesn't marry you for 23 years, you have to kinda have a CLUE that he may not be all that committed"

People! Not EVERYONE needs a piece of church sanctioned paper to consider themselves 'committed to each other' & not EVERY woman is sitting around waiting to be asked for the 'priviledge' of being married. Jesus, what is this, 1952?


Married or common-law, people screw around.

mygeorgie said...

I have been common-law 'married' for 18 years. I have never screwed around. Not once. My married friends however, most of them 'devout catholics & christians' are all fucking something other than their spouse.

Rant over. Happy Friday!

bawana said...

It sux when the boss is screwing some of the coworkers,regardless of how consensual it may be. For the ones who don't want to fukk their way to the top, or at least to special treatment, it creates a very uneasy environment.

Dave was wrong to use the workplace as his own little playground. I hope he ends up fired and sued by the EEOC.

nunaurbiz said...

On another note, I met Joe a few years ago when he was the top producer for a "48 Hours" show of a case that I had some involvement with. Nice guy. Had a big crush on a female detective (nudge, nudge, wink, wink).

His co-workers are baffled by this. He musta snapped big time. I feel sooooo sorry for his kids. I hope someone is looking after him because someone like Joe might just kill himself for the shame.

I know some of you out there will say "Good!" if he does, but, you know, in the long run, this isn't the worst crime and it's nothing that anyone should die over.

Joe's very respectable career has come to a crashing halt, whether he's cleared in this or not (remember being considered "innocent unless proven guilty"!!!).

Sad.

Lindsay Blohan said...

So Dave was getting a lot of pussy. Big deal. It't not like he was married.

And for all you know, his current wife liked to watch.

mygeorgie said...

""The evidence is compelling," she said. "It shows the defendant is desperate, and he is capable of doing anything."


This man was financially desperate, Birkitt had moved out a month ago & Halderman's intentions were to "destroy the reputation of Mr. Letterman and to submit him and his family to humiliation and ridicule."

Halderman's lawyer is right, "This story is far more complicated than what you heard this afternoon,"

There will be alot of mudslinging in the coming months.


http://tv.msn.com/tv/article.aspx?news=434757&gt1=28103

shakey said...

So he was pissed that his gf/wife/whatever she may be to him walked out on him?

Just doesn't make sense that he would do this years after the fact.

TheGoldenSockPuppet said...

Without hearing from his wife, I haven't decided it was outside the boundaries of their relationship. Some people have open relationships, and they don't make it a point to tell you that, they simply do what they do.
I know a couple of people like this. You wouldn't know they're in a long term relationship if the significant other didn't come around the office, as his former GF now wife didn't.

TheGoldenSockPuppet said...

I say that because his office relationships were serial, longer term, and fairly out-in-the-open. This certainly wasn't a fling, and virtually impossible to think he could keep all that secret from his GF. It fits what I've seen before.