Albert Levitt, 87, a retired chief psychologist for the Philadelphia Common Pleas Court, died March 26 of complications of Parkinson’s disease at his home in Flourtown.
Dr. Levitt’s court job was to determine whether defendants were competent to stand trial, and – if they were convicted – provide a mental health screening for the presentencing report. He was named chief psychologist before retiring in 2012.
Among the noted criminals evaluated by Dr. Levitt were Harrison “Marty Graham, who killed seven women in North Philadelphia, and Joey Coyle, who was charged with stealing $1.2 million that had fallen from a Brinks truck in South Philadelphia. Graham received a life sentence, while Coyle was acquitted.
Dr. Levitt also was privately retained by defendants to recommend who should be seated on juries to obtain the most favorable outcome.
He was the author of “Insanity and Incompetence: Case Studies in Forensic Psychology.”
An avid golfer, he also enjoyed photography, opera and classical music.
He is survived by his wife of 61 years, Claudette Pantarelli; sons Marc and Samuel, and two grandchildren.
A memorial service is planned for the end of April. Memorial donations may be made to the Parkinson Council Inc., 111 Presidential Blvd., Suite 141, Bala Cynwyd, PA 19004. – WF