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Who was Susan Berman and what happened to her?

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SUSAN Berman was brutally murdered in her LA apartment in December 2000.

The American journalist and author was founded dead execution style with a 9mm handgun at her rented Benedict Canyon home that on Christmas Eve.

Susan Berman was found murdered execution style in her LA apartment on Christmas Eve, 2000


Susan Berman was found murdered execution style in her LA apartment on Christmas Eve, 2000Credit: Polaris – Eyevine

Cops never found the murderer and suspected her long-time friend and real estate tycoon friend Robert Durst of foul play.

Durst has vehemently denied allegations he murdered Susan but recently admitted to visiting her flat and finding her body and leaving the “cadaver” note for police.

In March 2015, Durst was arrested in New Orleans and charged with first-degree murder in connection with Suan’s death.

Who was Susan Berman?

Susan was the daughter of Davie Berman, a Jewish-American organized crime figure who operated for notorious gangster Meyer Lanksy and the Genovese crime family in Minneapolis and Las Vegas.

In 1981, she wrote East Street, which depicted her life as a mobster’s daughter and was paid $350,000 for movie rights, though no film was ever made.

Susan maintains her dad – who replaced murderous gangster Bugdy Siegel at the Flamingo Hotel in Las Vegas – died under mysterious circumstances during an operation – though indications suggested he died of a heart attack. She was just 12 at the time.

Later in life, she took up a career in journalism and wrote for a range of newspapers, including the San Francisco Examiner.

In 1984, she married Christopher (“Mister”) Margulies and was walked down the aisle by Durst. Marguiles died of a heroin overdose in 1986.

Susan met Durst – who is suspected of killing his first wife Kathie McCormack in 1982 – while studying at UCLA in the late 1960s and the two kicked it off as friends.

What happened to Susan Berman?

Susan was murdered in her LA apartment on Christmas Eve 2000 and was believed to have died a day earlier.

Police suspected Durst of killing Susan after he admitted to being one of the last people to see her before she died.

He was arrested on March 14, 2015, in New Orleans for first-degree murder and denies all charges.

What has Robert Durst said about her death?

The 78-year-old recently told a LA courtroom he entered Susan’s house that Christmas Eve with a key she had mailed to him and found her bleeding on the floor.

“I did a double take. I saw Susan lying on the floor,” he said. “I shouted ‘Susan!’ a couple of times, then I quickly ran to the bedroom where she was. Her eyes were closed.”

Durst said he checked Susan’s pulse and lifted her off the floor before running to another room to call 911 but found the phone line wasn’t working.

He then left and tried to contact authorities from a pay phone on Sunset Boulevard, which is about two miles away.

When an operator answered, Durst said he started to have reservations.

“I decided I did not want to give them my name,” he said. “I was aware that my voice is very recognizable even without a name.”

He said he instead opted to write what has come to be known as the cadaver note – a scrap of paper with Susan’s address and the word “cadaver” that was mailed to the Beverly Hills Police Department.

Under questioning, Durst admitted he had lied about authoring the note over the years, including during an interview for the HBO documentary “The Jinx”.

A seemingly frail Durst taking the standing during his murder trial in LA


A seemingly frail Durst taking the standing during his murder trial in LACredit: EPA

“It’s a very difficult thing to believe,” he said on Monday. “I mean, I have difficulty believing it myself, that I would write the letter if I had not killed Susan Berman”.

This all came to a head during the filming of “The Jinx” when he was confronted about the misspelling of the word “Beverly” – which appeared in the “cadaver” note and in a previous letters he wrote to Susan.

Unaware he was still being recorded, he muttered the phrase “killed them all, of course,” which many have taken as a confession.

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