Dave Herman, former radio DJ, dies while in federal custody in New Jersey

A legendary radio disc jockey died while awaiting trial on federal pedophile charges.

78-year old Dave Herman died in federal custody at the Essex County Jail in Newark.

His attorney says he appears to have suffered an aneurysm of a major blood vessel near the heart. He says Herman was rushed to the hospital late Wednesday from the county jail after complaining of chest pains. No official cause of death has been announced.

Herman was being held on charges of attempting to transport a 7-year-old from New Jersey to the Virgin Islands for a sexual liaison.

The "girl" was actually a detective in the Bergen County prosecutor's office. Herman was facing 10 years in federal prison.

He was last in federal court in Newark earlier this year. Several supporters, including Herman's daughter, turned up at the brief hearing,

"He was talkative, he was engaged, he was vibrant. It's hard for a 78 year old to be in jail," said defense attorney Mark Agnifilo. "It's tragic that it had to end this way,:"

For a quarter century from 1972 to 1998, Herman was one of the defining personalities on New York rock radio on WNEW-FM.

He had been living in St. Croix in the U.S. Virgin Islands.

He was arrested at the airport there in October.

Herman had pleaded not guilty to the federal charge, but was denied bail.

Agnifilo had suggested that Herman was duped by an undercover police officer.

(The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

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