BEVERLY HILLS/BENEDICT CANYON—On Monday, August 2, Superior Court Judge Mark Windham denied suspected killer Robert Durst, a mistrial due to his health calling Durst, “mentally present.”

Durst stands accused of the 2000 murder of his best friend, Susan Berman. He has been traveling back and forth from prison to the hospital due to a urinary tract infection, which postponed his last trial.

Durst’s attorney, Dick DeGuerin, requested a mistrial stating “He’s {Durst] too sick to make the decision whether to testify. It’s cruel and unusual for Mr. Durst to be put through this in his condition. You should put a stop to this.”

“He has endured 11 weeks of trial, but remains mentally present,” Judge Windham replied.

He was wanted for the 1982 disappearance of his wife, Kathleen Durst. Public records indicate on March 14, 2015, Durst was arrested by the FBI in connection with the murder of Berman.  Berman’s shooting was viewed as a gang hit initially. Information surfaced that New York Police Department (NYPD) Investigator, Joseph Becerra had been talking to Berman regarding the 1982 murder of Kathleen.

Robert Durst And Susan Berman

Becerra testified in court against Durst who was accused of shooting Berman inside her Benedict Canyon home. Becerra indicated that he never got the opportunity to interview Berman as she was shot execution-style with a single gunshot wound to the head on December 24, 2000. She was dead for a day before her body was discovered.

Berman claimed to have been the daughter of mobster Davie Berman who reportedly replaced Bugsy Siegal at the Las Vegas Flamingo Hotel.

She was also a journalist who wrote: “Easy Street: The True Story of a Mob Family” (The Dial Press, 1981), “Driver,” “Give a Soldier a Lift” (Putnam, 1976), and “Steel, William” (2019), “Sex and the Serial Killer: My Bizarre Times” with Robert Durst, amongst others.

The Lifetime TV movie, “The Lost Wife of Robert Durst,” starred Daniel Gillies, and Katherine McPhee, who falls in love with the charming, but quirky real estate tycoon. Family and friends including Susan Berman discuss the 1982 disappearance of Kathleen. The TV movie was based on the book, “A Deadly Secret: The Bizarre and Chilling Story of Robert Durst” by investigative journalist Matt Birkbeck.

Durst moved to a Texas coastal town disguised as a woman with the same name as a childhood acquaintance, Dorothy Ciner. At times, he went by Durst, a relative of Ciner. While dressed as a woman, Durst was arrested while stealing a sandwich.

In 2001, he was wanted for the death of his neighbor, Morris Black, whose body washed ashore in Galveston, Texas, dismembered. Durst was not charged for Black’s murder citing that it was in a fight over a gun and Black was shot. He did admit to cutting up the body of Black and served time in prison for the crime.