Suspect serial killer and member of a family that operates a real-estate empire, Robert Durst has been found guilty of murdering his best friend.
On Sept. 17, a Los Angeles jury convicted Durst of killing Susan Berman on Dec. 24, 2000. The verdict comes after a trial that spanned weeks, and in fact years, when a break because of the COVID-19 pandemic is included..
Prosecutors alleged Durst killed Berman to cover up the murder of his wife Kathleen Durst in 1982. He is also accused of killing a neighbor in Texas. Authorities say Durst fled to Texas to avoid prosecution in New York. He lived under a false name and when the neighbor found out who he was, she was killed.
In Texas, Robert Durst was acquitted of murder, but convicted of cutting up his neighbor's body and dumping it at sea.
In California, Durst was only on trial for killing Berman, but prosecutors during the trial argued he killed three people in different states over four decades. During the trial, Durst appeared as a frail man often listening to the proceedings from a wheelchair.
Durst was also featured in the HBO documentary called “The Jinx” where he was caught on microphone talking about the killings.
Prosecutors John Lewin said in his opening statement that Durst was a serial killer involved in multiple homicides, including Berman's.
“All we have to show is that there was intent to kill Berman. You will decide whether it is murder or manslaughter,” Lewin told the jury.
He described how Berman was security conscious and always locked her door. Investigators believe Berman turned her back to Durst and never knew her death was coming.
“Berman had trusted Durst and he blew her brains out,” said Lewin.