Juror removed from Durst’s murder trial for reading news

Posted at 2:16 PM, May 18, 2021 and last updated 7:38 PM, July 19, 2023

By BRIAN MELLEY Associated Press

INGLEWOOD, Calif. (AP) — A juror was removed Tuesday from the murder trial of multimillionaire Robert Durst because she violated the court’s order not to read about the case.

Judge Mark Windham said he was removing the juror after she said she read about defense attorneys’ requests for a mistrial and was offended that they suggested jurors would have forgotten what they heard 14 months ago when the case was postponed because of the coronavirus pandemic.

The removal comes as lawyers prepared to present a new round of opening statements in Los Angeles County Superior Court. The judge interviewed jurors a day earlier to see if they could resume their duties after the unprecedented delay.

The panel now consists of 20 jurors, including eight alternates.

The 78-year-old Durst has pleaded not guilty to killing his best friend, Susan Berman, in 2000.