New York Real Estate Heir Robert Durst, The Subject Of A U.s. Tv Documentary On Unsolved Killings, Has Been Charged With First-degree Murder.
Durst, 71, was taken into custody in New Orleans, Louisiana on a warrant from Los Angeles County police on Saturday (14Mar15), nearly four years after he was last questioned about the fatal shooting of his close friend, author Susan Berman in 2001.
At the time, police lacked enough evidence to file charges against Durst, but the case was recently re-opened after the writer's stepson acquired new evidence that pointed to Durst as the alleged murderer.
On Monday (16Mar15), Los Angeles County prosecutors filed a first-degree murder charge against Durst, with special circumstances including murder of a witness and lying in wait, as well as weapons allegations. The capital murder charge makes Durst eligible for the death penalty.
He is currently being held without bail.
The final episode of director Andrew Jarecki's six-part series, The Jinx: The Life and Deaths of Robert Durst, which documented Durst's troubles and the three deaths he has been linked to in two decades, aired in the U.S. on Sunday night (15Mar15), and included damning testimony that appeared to feature Durst confessing to three murders.
But Los Angeles Police Department Deputy Chief Kirk Albanese insists the programme had absolutely no influence on the decision to arrest Durst, telling the Los Angeles Times, "We based our actions based on the investigation and the evidence. We didn't base anything we did on the series. The arrest was made as a result of the investigative efforts and at a time that we believe it was needed. We're constantly looking at cold cases - this being one of them."
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