Robert Joe Halderman was leading a normal life and apparently happy with his girlfriend Stephanie Birkitt just weeks ago, a neighbor of the man charged with extorting David Letterman told RadarOnline.com.
Birkitt had an ongoing sexual relationship with Letterman years ago, while Letterman was dating the woman who became his wife, and Halderman used that information (without her knowledge) to try to extort the late-night host. But neighbors say as of three weeks ago Birkitt, who works on Dave’s show, and Halderman, a producer for CBS's 48 Hours, Mystery, were together and happy.
In an exclusive interview, neighbor Kevin Lane tells RadarOnline.com, "Joe loved Steph. They seemed very close together.
"I had drinks at their house a few months ago and I didn't see anything wrong. They kidded around, just like a normal dating couple."
Kevin, a glazier for Connecticut Glass and Mirror, said: "Steph said she worked for David Letterman. She said he was a good boss and she especially enjoyed watching the movies that David got when an actor was coming to promote an upcoming film.
"Joe didn't make any comment about Steph's job. He seemed happy with it. "Joe never seemed to be flush with money. Because of my job, Joe asked me for my advice as he planned to get the front of his house and his chimney fixed.
"I feel especially bad for his nine-year-old son Jimmy. He had been living with Joe ever since Joe bought the house a few years ago. Joe was a great dad to him, they would practice golf on the lawn and maybe shoot some hoops. Steph was really good with Jimmy too and would babysit if Joe had to go somewhere.
"It really hurt Joe two and a half months ago when Jimmy moved to Colorado with Jimmy's mom and go to school there.
"He also has a daughter, I think she is 18, and she has gone to college. The only ones to keep him company regularly now are his two cats."