Robert Durst, subject of The Jinx , found guilty of murdering best friend Susan Berman in 2000

Robert Durst, subject of The Jinx , found guilty of murdering best friend Susan Berman in 2000
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Robert Durst, the eccentric New York real estate scion who was long suspected of foul play in the disappearance or death of several people close to him, and who was famously the subject of the true-crime miniseries The Jinx, was convicted of first-degree murder Friday in the 2000 killing of his best friend Susan Berman.

Durst, 78, will be sentenced Oct. 18, per the Associated Press, and he faces a mandatory life term without parole. Prosecutors in the case said Durst shot Berman in the back of the head in her Beverly Hills home on Dec. 24, 2000, because she was going to tell the police she helped Durst cover up the murder of his wife, Kathleen (née McCormack). Kathleen's body has never been found, though she has been presumed dead since her disappearance in January 1982.

Durst was previously acquitted of murdering his neighbor Morris Black in Texas in 2001. He claimed that Black's death was either an accident or self-defense after Durst came home to find Black in his apartment with his gun — though he did admit to dismembering Black's body and dumping it in Galveston Bay, and was convicted of destroying evidence for doing so.

Imprisoned Real Estate Heir Robert Durst Appears In Court For Hearing In Murder Case
Imprisoned Real Estate Heir Robert Durst Appears In Court For Hearing In Murder Case

Jae C. Hong-PoolGetty Images Robert Durst

Durst's bizarre, winding path was chronicled in the six-part HBO docuseries The Jinx in 2015. Durst contacted filmmaker Andrew Jarecki after seeing his 2010 film All Good Things, which starred Ryan Gosling and Kirsten Dunst as barely veiled versions of Durst and his wife, and implicated him in three killings. Durst found it to be a largely accurate portrayal, and wanted Jarecki to make a series about him. The Jinx ended with a bombshell moment caught on a hot mic in which Durst can be heard muttering to himself in the bathroom, "That's it, you're caught," and saying he "killed them all, of course."

Durst was arrested for Berman's murder a day before the explosive Jinx finale. The trial began in March 2020 but was postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic. It picked back up again in May, though there was another pause due to Durst's health issues.

In a statement provided to PEOPLE, Kathleen's family said they were happy with Durst's conviction but expressed dismay that they have not been given the same closure. "Not a single day goes by that we do not think about our beautiful, smart, and kind sister, Kathleen," the statement said. "Today, more than ever before, it is clear that she was murdered by Robert Durst in Westchester County, New York on January 31, 1982. The evidence is overwhelming."

The statement continued: "Although Durst has now been rightly convicted of killing Susan Berman, who helped him conceal the truth about Kathie's death, the McCormack family is still waiting for justice. Kathie is still waiting for justice. The justice system in Los Angeles has finally served the Berman family. It is now time for Westchester to do the same for the McCormack family and charge Durst for the murder of his wife, Kathie, which occurred almost forty years ago."

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