The real estate scion was the subject of HBO’s “The Jinx”
Robert Durst pleaded guilty to illegally possessing a .38-caliber revolver in New Orleans Federal Court on Wednesday, and will face 85 months in federal prison under a plea bargain arrangement.
According to the New York Times, he will be transferred to Los Angeles to face murder charges for allegedly killing his friend, Susan Berman. The prosecution has to arraign Durst by Aug. 18.
In March 2015, the FBI arrested Durst at the JW Marriott Hotel on Canal Street because they feared he was about to flee the country. He had registered at the hotel with a fake name, and upon search, law enforcement discovered he was carrying a handgun. At the time, Durst was a convicted felon and therefore, it was illegal for him to possess the gun.
At that time, HBO was airing a six-part documentary about Durst called “The Jinx,” which chronicles his various run-ins with the law and suspicions that he was responsible for several murders.
In 2000, police were preparing to question Berman, a friend of Durst’s, in the investigation of the disappearance of his first wife, Kathleen McCormack. But before they were able to get to Berman, she was found shot to death in her Benedict Canyon, Calif. home on Dec. 24 that year. L.A. district attorneys reopened the murder case after evidence was revealed during “The Jinx” that further implicated Durst’s involvement.
The documentary ended with Durst speaking into the microphone he didn’t know was on: “What the hell did I do? Killed them all, of course.”
On March 14, Durst was taken into custody on a first degree murder warrant out of Los Angeles County.
According to the New York Times, Durst is worth than $100 million and used some of the country’s best defense lawyers in the past. He was never charged in the disappearance of McCormack. Moreover, in 2003, he was acquitted of murder charges despite his account of cutting up his neighbor, Morris Black. Durst claimed the death was an accident after the two men fought for a gun. Black’s body parts were found in the Galveston Bay, but the head was never found.
The defense team and prosecution will grapple over similarities between Durst’s two handwritten letters that incriminated his involvement with Berman’s murder, as well as his murder confession on tape, when they get to Los Angeles.