This week, multimillionaire Robert Durst denied killing his friend Susan Berman, daughter of a Las Vegas mobster and casino owner, in a California court.
Susan Berman was murdered in cold blood, and her body was found at her place on 2000 Christmas Eve. She had a bullet hole in the back of her head, and there was no indication of a struggle, adding to the riddle surrounding her death. The multimillionaire Robert Durst murder trial continued in Los Angeles this week.
Durst, a 78-year-old and a New York real estate mogul son took the stand in Los Angeles Superior Court on Monday, the Associated Press recorded. The case has been delayed for more than a year this spring due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Durst’s lawyer, Dick DeGuerin, open the testimony this week by asking his client, “Bob, did you kill Susan Berman?”
But Durst said from the bar, “No.”
Dick then asked. “Do you know who did?”
Durst answered, “No, I do not.”
During his affidavit, Durst sat in a wheelchair. He had difficulty in hearing and speaking, according to the Associated Press. Durst came open that of having bladder cancer and other ailments. During his hearing this week, Durst said that he and Susan became acquittances in the 1960s when both were graduate school at UCLA.
Durst said, “We both had trust funds.”
Berman later acted as Durst’s delegate in 1982 after his wife, Kathleen McCormack Durst, or Kathie’s disappearance in New York. She was later declared dead though her body was never found.
Prosecutors have claimed that Durst killed Berman because she could have told the police that she assisted in covering his spouse’s disappearance.
On the Eve of 2000 Christmas, Berman had allowed Durst into her home in the Benedict Canyon area, Los Angeles. She turned her back on him “because she trusted him,” Deputy District Attorney John Lewis told the court earlier this year.
The prosecutor said, “She turned around, she took a few steps, and he blew her body.”
According to Durst’s lawyer, Durst had gone to Berman’s house, but he panicked and ran when he found her body.
Las Vegas Mobster
According to author and journalist Cathy Scoot, Berman was the only child of David, who served a jail sentence in Sing Sing Correctional Facility in New York because of kidnapping. In 2002, Scott wrote the book Murder of a Mafia Daughter: The Life and Tragic of Susan Berman.
In 1994, David Berman relocated to Las Vegas and ventured into downtown casinos such as the El Cortez, which is still running, with a few remaining original buildings.
Scott, a Las Vegas Sun former reporter, wrote that Berman once owned the Flamingo, formerly a Mob-linked casino on the Las Vegas Strip. A New York gangster, Benjamin Bugsy Siegel, launched the Flamingo in December 1946. Though none of the original structures are intact, the casino is still in operation.
David Berman died in June 1957 at the age of 54 from a heart attack during an operation.
‘Wagering silver mine’
In an article published last month on Psychology Today, Scott stated that Susan Berman has acquired $5.25 million but misused it. At the time her murdered, she was bankrupt.
For years, Susan embarked on a career as a writer, including her 1981 publication story, Easy Street; The True Memoir of a Gangster’s Daughter.
Inside it, she attributed her father for being the first person to discover Las Vegas’ potential as a gaming capital.
She wrote, “He was Mob visionary who helped convince his Eastern partners that there was money to be made in that honky-tonk town known as Las Vegas, and went on to forge a gambling silver mine out of a desert full of sagebrush.”