Robert Alan Durst, excellently known as Robert Durst was an American murderer, serial killer, and real-estate heir. He was the subject of the HBO mini-series “The Jinx: The Life and Deaths of Robert Durst”, he first gained media attention in the 1980s when his wife disappeared. He resurfaced in the media in the 2000s when he was a wanted man for murder. Robert was also accused of killing his elderly neighbor, Morris Black, in 2001 and dumping the dismembered body in Galveston Bay. He was acquitted of the murder charge when he claimed that he accidentally killed Black while defending himself. In 2015, with new evidence, Robert was charged with the murder of Susan Berman and arrested. The trial started in March 2020 but was halted due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Durst’s life has inspired a movie with Ryan Gosling in lead, and an HBO miniseries. Badly, we lost him on 10th January 2022.
Robert Durst Dies at 78
Robert A. Durst, the scion of a New York real estate dynasty whose life dissolved in a calamity of suspicions over the unsolved disappearance of his first wife died early Monday as a prisoner in Stockton, California on 10th January 2022. He was 78. His lawyer Chip Lewis confirmed his death, at the San Joaquin General Hospital, where Mr. Durst had been taken for testing. He then went into cardiac arrest and could not be revived, Mr. Lewis said. Mr. Durst had been serving a life sentence at the California Health Care Facility in the killing of his longtime confidante Susan Berman. At the time of his death, Robert still remained in the custody of the California Department of Corrections.
- Being an American murderer, serial killer, and real-estate heir.
- For the disappearance of his wife, Kathleen.
Where was Robert Durst from?
Robert Durst was born on 12th April 1943 with the real name of Robert Alan Durst in New York City, the U.S. He held American nationality and he belonged to American-white ethnicity. Likewise, his religious belief was in the Jewish religion and his race was white. Robert lastly celebrated his 78th birthday back in 2021 and as per his birthdate, his star sign was Aries. He was the son of real-estate magnate Seymour Durst (father) and his wife Bernice Herstein (mother) His siblings were Douglas, Tommy, and Wendy Durst. When Durst was seven, his mother died as a result of a fall from the roof of the family’s Scarsdale home; he later claimed that moments before her death, his father walked him to a window from which he could see her standing on the roof.
Regarding Robert’s education, he attended Scarsdale High School, where classmates described him as a loner. He earned a bachelor’s degree in economics in 1965 from Lehigh University. Durst enrolled in a doctoral program at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) later that year.
Robert Durst Career Timeline
- Robert Durst first gained media attention in the 1980s when his wife, Kathleen McCormack disappeared as McCormack was last seen by someone other than Durst on the evening of 31st January 1982, when she appeared unexpectedly at a dinner party thrown by her friend Gilberte Najamy in Newtown, Connecticut.
- The couple argued and fought that evening whereas after McCormack had left Najamy’s house, the two were supposed to meet at a pub called The Lion’s Gate in Manhattan. When she failed to appear, Najamy became concerned and repeatedly called the police for several days. Later that week, Durst filed a missing person’s report, as well.
- McCormack had been treated at a Bronx hospital for facial bruises three weeks before her disappearance. She told a friend that Durst beat her, but did not press charges over the incident.
- After McCormack’s disappearance, the New York City Police Department said that Robert had claimed to have last spoken to her when she called him at the Riverside Drive apartment.
- Eight years after McCormack disappeared, Durst divorced her, claiming spousal abandonment and the McCormack family asked to have Kathleen declared legally dead in 2016 which was a request that was granted the following year.
- The New York State Police quietly reopened the criminal investigation into the disappearance in 1999 as Kathleen’s mother, Ann McCormack, attempted to sue Durst for $100,000,000, alleging that he killed McCormack and deprived them of the right to bury her. McCormack’s parents are now deceased. Her younger sister, Mary McCormack Hughes, also believes that Durst murdered her. The investigation became public in November 2000.
- On 17th May 2021, during Robert’s trial for the murder of Susan Berman, Westchester County District Attorney Mimi Rocah announced that McCormack’s disappearance had been reclassified as murder and would be reinvestigated.
- Shortly after Durst’s first-degree conviction for the murder of Susan Berman, the Westchester County, New York in October 2021, District Attorney’s office announced they would empanel a Grand Jury to explore charges against Durst in the disappearance of his first wife, Kathleen McCormack Durst. He was officially charged 22nd October 2021, in her death
- Furthermore, Susan Berman who was a long-time friend of Durst’s who had facilitated his public alibi after McCormack’s disappearance was found murdered execution-style in her home in Benedict Canyon, Los Angeles, California on 24th December 2000, after her neighbors called the police to report that her door was open and one of her fox terriers was loose.
- Robert was known to have been in northern California days before Berman was killed, and to have flown from San Francisco to New York the night before Berman’s body was discovered. Robert stated in a 2005 deposition that Berman called him shortly before her death to say that the LAPD wanted to talk to her about McCormack’s disappearance.
- Berman biographer Cathy Scott has asserted that Durst killed her because she knew too much about his wife’s disappearance.
- Durst was arrested in Galveston on 9th October 2001 shortly after body parts belonging to his elderly neighbor, Morris Black, were found floating in Galveston Bay. He was released on $250,000 bail, missed a court hearing on October 16, and a warrant was issued for his arrest on a charge of bail jumping.
- In 2003, Durst was also tried for the murder of Black. He claimed Black, a cranky and confrontational loner, grabbed his .22 caliber target pistol from its hiding place and threatened him with it. During the struggle for the pistol, the pistol discharged, shooting Black in the face.
- Black’s head was never recovered, so prosecutors were unable to present sufficient forensic evidence to dispute Durst’s account of the struggle. As a result of lack of forensics, the jury acquitted Durst of murder on 11th November 2003. He was released again from custody on 1st March 2006.
- In early 2015, a six-part HBO documentary titled “The Jinx: The Life and Deaths of Robert Durst” described circumstantial evidence linking Durst to the murder of Berman, who was believed to have knowledge of McCormack’s disappearance.
- A few days after a first-degree murder warrant was signed by a Los Angeles judge in relation to the Berman killing, Robert was arrested by FBI agents on 14th March 2015, at the Canal Street Marriott in New Orleans, where he had registered under the false name “Everette Ward”.
- Louisiana State Police filed charges against Durst in March 2015 for being a felon in possession of a firearm and for possession of a firearm with a controlled substance, forestalling his immediate return to California.
- Robert (BOP Number 45101-079) was originally placed in USP Terre Haute but was later transferred to a Los Angeles County Jail while awaiting trial.
- Moreover, Durst’s lawyers filed a motion with the court saying Durst had developed bladder cancer on 13th May 2021 whereas the motion was denied by the court and the trial resumed on 17th May, with Windham questioning jurors about whether they could still remain neutral in the case after a fourteen-month break.
- Durst was hospitalized after being found “down and not in his wheelchair” on 10th June 2021 and he was unable to dress and was in court in his wheelchair, jail uniform, with catheter bag, and covered in a large blanket. As testimony continued, his brother Douglas appeared as a prosecution witness on 28th June 2021.
- Although highly unusual for a murder case, Robert himself was expected to testify on his own behalf on 5th August 2021, but the court was adjourned until 9th August 2021, due to a positive COVID-19 test of a relative of Durst’s legal team who had been attending the trial.
- On 14th September 2021, the jury was charged with reaching a verdict by Judge Mark Windham and the jury convicted Durst for the first-degree murder of Susan Berman on 17th September 2021.
- Durst’s lawyers filed a motion with Judge Mark Windham to request a new trial on 24th September 2021.
- Later Robert was sentenced to life imprisonment without the possibility of parole for Berman’s murder on 14th October 2021. The request of Durst for a new trial was denied by the court in view of the abundance of evidence ruling in favor of Durst’s guilt for the crime.
- Besides, Durst was among those listed in the Pandora Papers revelation, exposing the offshore sheltering of financial assets by hundreds of political, business, and celebrity people in 2021.
Who was Robert Durst Wife?
Robert Durst was a married guy. He met Kathleen McCormack, a dental hygenist and the two moved in together in Vermont and opened a health food store in 1978. He married Kathleen in 1973. He was reportedly violent and controlling in his marriage. On 31st January 1982, she was last seen at her friend’s party in Connecticut where she appeared upset and left for her South Salem home after receiving a phone call from Durst. Durst claimed that they had a big fight after which he dropped her at Katonah train station and later spoke to her over the telephone.
Later on 11th December 2000, shortly before the Berman killing, Durst married Debrah Lee Charatan. He had no children. Concerning his sexual orientation, he was straight.
How much was Robert Durst Net Worth?
Robert Durst had a net worth of $110 million at the time of his death (2022) whereas his exact amount of salary had not been disclosed yet. Robert had not done endorsement work for any brands yet. In 2011, he purchased a $1.75 million townhouse on Lenox Avenue in Harlem. Durst also owned three condominiums in a multistory complex in Houston. As of 2022, the Durst family’s real estate holdings are worth more than $8 billion. Robert’s major source of income was from his real-estate heir career.
What was the Height of Robert Durst?
Robert Durst stood at an ideal height of 1.68 m with a balanced bodyweight of 70 kg. He had short grey hair and dark brown eyes color. In addition, his body build type was average. On 16th October 2021, Durst tested positive for COVID-19 and was placed on a ventilator.