The brother of a woman who vanished 19 years ago is furious that the man he thinks can unravel the mystery – her husband, real-estate scion Robert Durst – is free on bail in a gory Texas murder case.
“I’m flabbergasted,” said Jim McCormack, the brother of the missing Kathleen Durst. “It’s an amazing circumstance.
“Here you have a man who is arrested and charged with an obviously heinous crime – based on being tied to the crime by physical evidence and a tipster – and he’s allowed to walk free on bail.
“How could you allow this man to get back into society?”
Durst, 58, was arrested in Galveston, Texas, Tuesday and charged with killing and dismembering his next-door neighbor, 71-year-old Morris Black, whose body parts – minus his head – washed up in plastic bags in Galveston Bay on Sept. 30.
A police affidavit that accompanied the arrest warrant said cops believe Durst shot Black with a .22-caliber gun and sliced up his body with a bow saw and a knife.
Despite the shocking nature of the crime, Durst was granted bail of $250,000. He posted it yesterday and walked free.
McCormack said if Durst is found guilty of the Texas killing, it would show “a predisposition to commit crime” and bolster his belief that Durst was involved in Kathleen’s disappearance.
McCormack and other family members discussed the arrest with Westchester District Attorney Jeanine Pirro, whose office has reopened the investigation into Kathleen Durst’s disappearance.
Pirro said the case was “active” and a “high priority,” and that there had been “recent developments,” which she declined to disclose. She also refused to reveal whether a grand jury had been convened in the case.
Kathleen vanished on Jan. 31, 1982, after arguing on the phone with her husband, who wanted her to return to their lakeside home in South Salem, N.Y.
She had begun divorce proceedings against Robert, the son of the late millionaire developer Seymour Durst. A spokesman for the Durst Organization said Robert had not been involved in the company for eight years.
Last year, mob writer Susan Berman, a friend of Robert’s, was murdered just days before she was to be quizzed by cops about Kathleen’s disappearance.