LOS ANGELES — Attorneys for New York real estate heir Robert Durst conceded in court last week that their client wrote a note to authorities in 2000 directing them to the location of the body of his friend Susan Berman, according to court documents obtained by the Associated Press. Durst has plead not guilty in the killing of Berman.
In a court document filed Christmas Eve in Los Angeles Superior Court, lawyers for Durst acknowledged he had written the note directing police to the home of Susan Berman in December 2000.
The note became a focal point in the 2015 docuseries “The Jinx: The Life and Deaths of Robert Durst.” The letter was addressed to Beverly Hills Police with the word Beverly spelled incorrectly as “Beverley.” Inside, a note written in capitalized block handwriting contained Berman’s address with the single word “cadaver.”
In the series, Durst told filmmaker Andrew Jarecki and his crew only the killer could have written the note. The reveal came after Berman’s stepson had provided an envelope the defendant had addressed to Berman in 1999 on which Durst wrote in the same block lettering and also had the misspelled “Beverley.”
Durst’s attorneys said they made the concession regarding the “cadaver” note as a strategic decision after a judge agreed to admit the evidence based on analysis by handwriting experts. His defense plans to contest that ruling on appeal, according to the AP.
The trial is scheduled to start Feb. 10, 2020.
Durst was previously investigated for the disappearance of his first wife Kathie McCormack who went missing in 1982. He was later arrested for the killing and dismemberment of his neighbor Morris Black in Galveston, Texas in 2001. Durst claimed he killed the man in self-defense and with a lack of forensic evidence he was acquitted of murder charges.
These previous cases and Durst’s other encounters with the law were the subjects of a fictionalized film, also by director Andrew Jarecki, “All Good Things” released in 2010 and starring Ryan Gosling as Robert Durst and Kirsten Dunst as Kathie McCormack.