Robert Durst, Wearing Your Wireless Mike to the Loo, and Investigation by Media

In an event symptomatic of the power of the new mass media, information-gathering as part of HBO’s series on The Jinx: The Life and Deaths of Robert Durst appears to have dug up enough new evidence to suggest that Durst murdered his wife and a good friend, Susan Berman.

James McCormack via The New York Times

He was arrested last Saturday in New Orleans and charged with first-degree murder.

The two main pieces of evidence were:

  • a letter from Durst to Bergman in 1999, found by Berman’s stepson Sareb Kaufman, bearing what seemed to be the same handwriting and spelling errors as the anonymous letter sent to the police notifying them of a cadaver in Berman’s house in 2000; and
  • a recording of him whispering to himself when he went to the bathroom (loo) whilst still miked:”What a disaster. … I’m having difficulty with the question. What the hell did I do? Killed them all, of course.”

Entertainment impinging on reality, and reality as entertainment. Yet, more real than hyper-reality?

PS: at events, we’ve often had to stop speakers wandering off to the restroom with their wireless mikes still on, broadcasting their toilet work to the gathered audience. Criminal-with-something-to-hide or no, it’s embarrassing either way.

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