A revealing exchange between multimillionaire Robert Durst and John Lewin, the Los Angeles County deputy district attorney who will face him in court, has been made public days before his murder trial begins. The conversation took place without Durst’s lawyers present, and went on for three hours.
In a few days, pre-trial hearings will begin in Los Angeles for Durst in connection with the murder of his former friend Susan Berman. Durst, whose bizarre story was documented in the HBO series The Jinx, is also suspected in the disappearance of his first wife, Kathie, and connected to the death of a neighbor, Morris Black.
In the conversation with Lewin, Durst references the dismemberment of Black’s body, after what he claimed was a killing in self-defense. After Lewin commented that cutting up a dead body with a saw would be very difficult, Durst agreed, and added:
“Cutting up that body the way I was doing it, was the hard way. The proper way is what a surgeon would do with a scalpel and he would cut around the ligaments and then do the joint, not on the bone.”
Lewin begins the interview by flattering Durst’s “dry sense of humor” before coaxing him to discuss the time period leading up to Susan Berman’s murder — after Durst learned authorities were reopening the investigation into his wife’s disappearance.
“I know that when you killed Susan that was not something you want to do,” Lewin says during a part of the interview that was shown on 48 Hours. Durst replied, “I’m gonna stay away from killing Susan.”
In another shocking segment of the interview, Durst appears to be leading up to negotiating a deal. “If there’s something that I could do that would be worthwhile … and they could do something for me….” he begins, adding, “if you’d like some details from me, if I knew about where Kathie’s body is … and about what happened with Susan….”
Durst then seems to be angling for the ability to select where he would imprisoned, seemingly having accepted the notion that it would be very unlikely that he would be a free man. He acknowledged, “…if I tell you these things, I’m pleading guilty.” Lewin states that he has no real control over where Durst would be incarcerated, but that he could make a recommendation.
It’s rare that an exchange like this would be made available before a trial, but Lewin recently filed it, which does make it public.
“I do want to say here and now though, I am not guilty,” Robert Durst said during his November 7, 2016, arraignment in Los Angeles. “I did not kill Susan Berman.”
During his appearance on The Jinx, Durst shocked the world when he appeared to confess that he “killed them all” while unaware that his microphone was still recording. He has since denied that his rambling captured on the series was a confession, and stated that he was “on meth the whole time” the show was being filmed.
Durst is currently in prison serving time on a federal gun charge.
Main photo: Robert Durst appears in the Airport Branch of the Los Angeles County Superior Court on November 7, 2016 in Los Angeles, California. [Photo by Pool/Getty Images]