Since everyone is talking about Robert Durst, I thought I’d throw my two cents into the mix. I’ve been following the Durst case for years. I even wrote about his missing wife, Kathie, and the decades that followed in which his family and friends began to suspect that he had something to do with her 1982 disappearance. You can read about Kathie and Robert’s case, along with the cases of twenty-nine other missing women, in my book, Missing Wives, Missing Lives. When Robert’s longtime companion, Susan Berman, was shot execution style in her Los Angeles home in 2000, and then his Galveston, Texas neighbor turned up dismembered in 2001, the coincidences became too large to ignore. I think it’s clear to most people who have followed the case for decades that Mr. Durst has been a murderer walking free for years. If it wasn’t, the HBO documentary, “The Jinx: The Life and Deaths of Robert Durst” has made it abundantly clear.
Over the weekend, Robert Durst was arrested in New Orleans for the first-degree murder of his friend, Susan Berman, in 2000. Producers of the riveting HBO documentary uncovered a letter written on Robert’s letterhead to Susan a few years before her murder. The handwriting on the envelope it came in looks to be a pretty close match to the same letter anonymously mailed to the LAPD the same day of Susan’s murder, letting them know a cadaver could be found in her residence. Just exactly how the LAPD missed this crucial piece of evidence is beyond me, as it appeared to have been tucked away in Susan’s belongings in her residence before the murder and must have been boxed up by someone. Additionally, at the end of the last episode of the documentary, Robert Durst, seemingly unaware of his microphone still attached to him, mutters a series of damning sentences to himself while in the bathroom. After just having been shown the handwriting evidence, he utters, “There it is, you’re caught,” and “What did I do? Killed them all, of course.” I have to admit, the finale was as shocking as it could get and I practically fell out of my seat when I heard those words come out of his mouth. Yet, I wonder how it will hold up in court? Will this audio even be allowed into the courtroom? It’s tough to say. I’m certainly not a lawyer, but I’ve seen crucial evidence tossed from trials for the most random reasons. And besides the handwriting analysis, it doesn’t look like there is much more new evidence that has been uncovered. Although, I know some people have been convicted of murder for much less. Even if the audio and the handwriting analysis is admitted into court, will it be enough to convict?
Clearly, I believe Durst is guilty. I would not have included Kathie’s story in my book if I didn’t. But I really hope the LAPD has another tidbit of evidence in their back pocket. Otherwise, I’m not so sure what we’ve learned about the case in the past few weeks really amounts to a conviction. I hope I’m wrong. What do you think? Is it enough?