Create a free profile to get unlimited access to exclusive videos, breaking news, sweepstakes, and more!
On the seventh day of Robert Durst’s murder trial in Los Angeles, the accused murderer and heir to a real estate fortune told the court that before his wife vanished nearly 40 years ago they had a dispute about his pursuing a relationship with another woman — Prudence Farrow Bruns — and that after she vanished he was free to continue the supposed relationship.
Durst, the 78-year-old scion and subject of the hit true-crime docuseries “The Jinx,” stands accused of the Dec. 23, 2000 murder of Susan Berman at her Los Angeles home; he has pleaded not guilty to the first-degree murder charges and denied involvement in the death of his closest friend, who was the daughter of mob figure David Berman, from the stand last week.
On Thursday, in continuing testimony about the mysterious 1982 disappearance of his wife, Durst discussed his alleged relationship with Bruns, an academic and educator who, incidentally, is the subject of The Beatles’ 1968 track, “Dear Prudence.” The accused killer said from the stand that he had been seeing Farrow and by the end of 1981 had sought to pursue a relationship; in prior conversations with detectives, Durst indicated that Bruns would only agree to the relationship if he was not married; his wife, Kathleen McCormack Durst, disapproved, he said.
"You wanted to pursue a relationship with Prudence by your own statement. Kathy did not want you to pursue a relationship with Prudence, and I’m asking you how did that get resolved?" Deputy District Attorney John Lewin asked Durst in the courtroom.
"Kathy disappeared," he responded.
"Yes, that is how it got resolved, isn’t it? … That is how it got resolved, Mr. Durst, isn’t it?" Lewin asked.
"Yes," Durst said.
Farrow, who is the sister of activist and actor Mia Farrow, has been married to Albert Morrill Bruns since the late 1960s. A phone call and emails placed to Bruns on Friday afternoon by Oxygen.com seeking clarification on any relationship she may have had with Durst were not immediately returned.
Kathie Durst vanished from the couple’s Westchester County, New York home in January of 1982 under still-uncertain circumstances and was declared dead by the Surrogate's Court in Manhattan in 2017. Authorities have been suspicious of Durst regarding his wife’s disappearance, but he has never been charged with a crime in relation to her death and maintains his innocence.
Berman, a pal of Robert Durst’s since they met at UCLA, was his alibi after he was suspected of killing Kathie. Prosecutors in Los Angeles have said that Durst shot Berman execution-style at her home so she would not tell authorities that the alibi was false.
Durst has been in a wheelchair during the entire trial due to bladder cancer and other ailments. His trial began in 2020 but was delayed during the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic.
In 2015, Durst was arrested in connection with Berman's death — just one day before the finale of "The Jinx" aired. The series famously captured Durst possibly confessing on a hot mic while using the bathroom after an interview with the filmmaker.
"What the hell did I do? Killed them all, of course," Durst apparently utters.
The filmmakers had edited his mumblings for the TV series, but they provided the full clip to the police. It was played in its entirety for jurors in 2020.
Crime Time is your destination for true crime stories from around the world, breaking crime news, and information about Oxygen's original true crime shows and documentaries. Sign up for Oxygen Insider for all the best true crime content.