Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Done With Durst

It was a great series:

"No bond for millionaire Durst on New Orleans weapons charges" Associated Press  March 24, 2015

NEW ORLEANS — A magistrate ordered millionaire Robert Durst held without bond on weapons charges in Louisiana on Monday and said the man accused of killing his friend 15 years ago in California was both a flight risk and a danger to others.

Magistrate Harry Cantrell set a preliminary hearing in the weapons case for April 2.

Durst, 71, is accused of killing Susan Berman in 2000, but his lawyers say his arrest was illegal and orchestrated to coincide with the finale of an HBO series about his links to three killings.

He was arrested March 14 at a New Orleans hotel on both the weapons charges and on the Los Angeles County warrant accusing him of murder. Durst waived extradition to California on the murder charge, but is being held in New Orleans to face the weapons charges.

Durst had registered at the J.W. Marriott Hotel under the name Everette Ward, and a search of his hotel room turned up his passport, nearly $43,000 in cash, a gun, and a rubber or latex mask that could cover his head and neck, according to a search warrant for his Houston condo.

Durst, a member of a wealthy New York real estate family, was charged with murder in California for the December 2000 shooting death of Berman.

His arrest came one day before the finale of ‘‘The Jinx,’’ the show about his links to his first wife’s disappearance in 1982; the death of Berman, a mobster’s daughter who acted as his spokeswoman after his wife went missing; and a 71-year-old neighbor in Texas whose dismembered body was found floating in Galveston Bay in 2001.

Durst has been tried only for the Texas killing, and he was acquitted of murder.


"Robert Durst eyed in disappearance of Vermont student in 1971" by Juan Esteban Cajigas Jimenez, Globe Correspondent  March 24, 2015

Police in Vermont are investigating a possible connection between millionaire Robert Durst, 71, and the disappearance of a Middlebury College student in 1971.

Middlebury Police Chief Thomas Hanley said in a statement Monday that law enforcement has been aware of the connection for several years.

According to Hanley, Durst owned and operated the “All Good things” health food store in Middlebury when Lynne Schulze was reported missing.

Schulze was 18 years old at the time of her disappearance.

“The Lynne Schulze case was reopened in 1992,” Hanley said. “Although technically labeled ‘cold’, the case has been continuously generating leads since the investigation was re-opened. We continue to follow up on all leads that we receive in this case.”
No bond for millionaire Durst

A magistrate on Monday ordered millionaire Robert Durst held without bond on weapons charges in Louisiana.

No other information was available from police on Monday. Durst is currently being held without bond on weapons charges in Louisiana. He is also accused of killing a friend 15 years ago in California.


"Vt. student shopped at Robert Durst’s store before vanishing" by Peter Schworm and Evan Allen, Globe Staff  March 24, 2015

MIDDLEBURY, Vt. — It was December 1971, and Lynne Schulze was in her dorm room, looking for her favorite pen before a final exam. But the Middlebury College freshman never showed up for the 1 p.m. test.

At 2:15 p.m., she was spotted across the street from a local health food store, one she had visited earlier in the day. She was never seen again.

More than four decades later, police in this small college town are focusing their investigation into Schulze’s disappearance on the man who owned that modest store: multimillionaire murder suspect Robert Durst.

A day after the stunning revelation that the eccentric, notorious figure had been a subject of the Vermont cold-case investigation since 2012, Middlebury police Tuesday provided new details about Durst’s apparent proximity to the 18-year-old on the day she vanished. Durst’s alleged involvement in other “nefarious activities,” authorities in town said, only deepened their suspicions.

“This is a person who is very interesting to us,” said Thomas Hanley, the Middlebury police chief. “We certainly would like to talk to him.”

Police in Middlebury are the latest authorities to focus attention on Durst, the troubled heir to a New York real estate empire who was arrested this month and charged with the 2000 killing of Susan Berman, a longtime friend.

In a bizarre twist, Durst was arrested in New Orleans the day before the final episode of an HBO series on his life aired, bringing new attention to his alleged connections with the Berman case and two others: the 2001 death of a 71-year-old neighbor and the 1982 disappearance of his wife. During the show, Durst was recorded off camera saying, “What the hell did I do? Killed them all, of course.”

Following Durst’s arrest, FBI officials have advised local investigators in areas where Durst, 71, has lived to reexamine cold cases for possible connections, a spokesman said. But in Vermont, police had been eyeing Durst since 2012, when they received a tip that he had owned a health food shop in town at the time of Schulze’s disappearance. After years of false leads, it was a promising development, authorities said Tuesday.

Durst’s store was named “All Good Things,” which became the title of a 2010 movie based on Durst’s story.

Middlebury police did not describe him as a suspect and said they have no evidence that Durst and Schulze “had any personal contact” but they are investigating a potential connection.

“We know Lynne stopped at the store the last day she was seen,” Detective Kris Bowdish said at an afternoon news conference where authorities gave a timeline of Schulze’s movements on the day she disappeared.

Around 12:30 p.m., Schulze was seen at the bus stop beside Durst’s store, eating prunes she had bought there, investigators said. Schulze told a student she was waiting for a bus to New York, but returned to campus when she learned it had already left.

Around 2:15, Schulze was again spotted near the store.

“This is the last time she is ever seen,” Bowdish said.

Police said they do not believe Durst was ever interviewed at the time. He lived in Middlebury less than two years, they said.

All of Schulze’s belongings, including her wallet and identification, were found in her dorm room.

Relatives of Schulze could not be reached for comment Tuesday. Police said the family had asked for privacy, but were “very interested in the lead” after so many years.

“They would very much like some resolution and closure,” Bowdish said of Schulze’s siblings. Her parents have died.

Hanley, the police chief, said investigators reopened the case in 1992 and “began from square one.”

Several detectives have since headed up the investigation, but have never made substantial progress.

Despite the passage of time, authorities say they are hopeful someone will come forward with information about that day or a possible link between the two.

“We don’t let open cases like this, where someone has died, go away,” Hanley said.

Durst has long denied any involvement in Berman’s shooting or his wife’s disappearance. In 2003, he admitted to killing his neighbor, but was acquitted after pleading self-defense.

He is being held without bail as a potential flight risk. He has been held in a mental health unit, and is considered a suicide risk.

His lawyer, who could not be reached for comment Tuesday, has maintained his client is innocent.

Friends of Schulze, who grew up in Simsbury, Conn., said that although details remain scarce, they remain optimistic her disappearance will be solved.

“We are hoping and praying for resolution about what happened to our dear one 44 years ago,” said Susan Randall, a high school friend.

Coming at the end of the semester, Schulze’s disappearance was not reported for several days, and her parents asked police to keep it private until late January as they awaited her return.

There were many reported sightings of Schulze, police said, but none were found credible.

In Middlebury, many people found the sudden spotlight on the town unsettling as they revisited the young woman’s sudden disappearance.

“Nobody knew anything. Even in the papers, nobody knew,” said Reg Spooner, 77, who grew up in Middlebury.

In those days, Spooner said, Middlebury was much smaller. A disappearance — and an apparent murder — was unheard of.

Jerry Huestis, 50, who lives at the site of the former health food store, said Durst’s potential connection gave him an “eerie feeling.’’

“It’s bad enough seeing what the guy looked like, but knowing he was here?”


So what is this about them having ties to 9/11 and the WTCs? 

No joke, folks.