Is Robert Durst moving closer to answering a murder charge in L.A.?

Jailed millionaire Robert Durst is about to re-enter the spotlight.

On Monday, a federal judge issued an order for Durst to be re-arraigned on weapons charges next month in Louisiana. That could signal that he is prepared to change his not guilty plea in order to speed his extradition to Los Angeles, where he faces a murder charge in the 2000 killing of his friend Susan Berman.

In Houston, Durst’s lead attorney, Dick DeGuerin, would not comment about whether his eccentric client plans to change his plea at the Dec. 17 hearing, and said the legal team remains focused on getting him extradited.

“Bob Durst did not kill Susan Berman and doesn’t know who did,” DeGuerin said.

“From the time of his arrest in New Orleans in March, Bob and his legal team have been eager to get to California so he will finally have the opportunity to prove his innocence,” he added, “We hope to resolve all other charges right away so that Bob can be transferred to California for trial.”

Durst, 72, heir to a New York real estate empire, drew national attention this year as the subject of the HBO docudrama “The Jinx.”

The series explored the mysterious disappearance of Durst’s wife, Kathy, in 1982, as well as the 2000 killing of Berman, who was found shot in her Benedict Canyon home. In the final episode, Durst is caught muttering what sounded like a confession to the killings into a microphone off-camera.

Durst left his final interview to use the bathroom, appearing not to notice that his microphone was still recording as he muttered to himself, “What the hell did I do? Killed them all, of course.”

“There it is, you’re caught,” he said at another moment. “What a disaster.”

Before the series ended last spring, Durst disappeared from his Houston condo, a manhunt ensued and he was caught in New Orleans on March 14. Los Angeles County officials charged him with murder in connection with Berman’s death and attempted to extradite him to California.

Durst’s high-powered legal team didn’t oppose extradition, but the Louisiana prosecutors did. State and federal officials brought charges in connection with guns recovered from Durst’s New Orleans hotel room, and he has languished in a Louisiana prison ever since.

By Molly Hennessy-Fiske (LA Times)

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Robert Durst rearraignment date may signal planned guilty plea in Louisiana court

Eccentric real estate heir and suspected killer Robert Durst has been scheduled for a “rearraignment” next month in federal court in New Orleans.

That may indicate he has agreed to plead guilty to a weapons charge that has kept him in Louisiana, according to the New Orleans Advocate.

According to federal court records, an order scheduling Durst for rearraignment on Dec. 17 in U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Louisiana was filed Monday.

In April, Durst pleaded not guilty to the weapons charges that were brought against him after his arrest March 14 in a French Quarter hotel. Authorities who arrested him in connection with the December 2000 slaying of his good friend from college days, Susan Berman, allegedly found an illegal loaded gun in his room.

According to The Advocate, Durst’s lead defense attorney, Houston lawyer Dick DeGuerin, declined to confirm a planned guilty plea.

Depending upon the resolution of the weapons charge, Durst may be extradited to California on that state’s murder charge in connection with Berman’s death.

By Carol Christian (Houston Chronicle)

Robert Durst: L.A. cops arrested millionaire because of ‘The Jinx’

Robert Durst’s arrest in a New Orleans hotel in March was the product of hype from the HBO mini-series “The Jinx,” and not new evidence Durst was behind the death of Susan Berman in 2000, the millionaire’s lawyers said in court filings Thursday (June 4).

Durst’s arrest took place on the eve of the finale of the six-part documentary was no coincidence, the attorneys said in a 55-page motion seeking to throw out evidence found in Durst’s hotel room at the J.W. Marriott hotel on Canal Street. (Read the full motion below this story.)

Police in Los Angeles had sought a warrant for Durst’s arrest just days after the cliffhanger fifth episode of “The Jinx” teased a confrontation in which the show’s producers would show Durst a copy of a letter directing police to a “cadaver” at Berman’s home.

As millions of viewers waited in suspense for the finale, “The California authorities who had been investigating Berman’s murder were on edge as well, but for different reasons,” Durst’s lawyers wrote.

“They were hurriedly planning to arrest Durst before the final episode. They were crafting a dramatic moment of their own.”

U.S. Marshals tracked Durst to the Marriott on March 14, where they questioned the millionaire in the lobby before conducting an “inventory search” of his room that turned up a loaded handgun and a small quantity of marijuana.

The final episode of the TV show aired the following night, and Durst’s lawyers claim, the evidence used to get the California warrant was hardly the bombshell portrayed by “The Jinx” producers or Los Angeles detectives: the letter and handwriting comparisons linking the note to Durst had been known for years.

“The producers and the California authorities thus accomplished together what neither could have done alone,” Durst’s lawyers wrote. “The publicity from the arrest gave the producers a welcome ratings bump, and the artful editing of the show made it seem as though California’s case against Durst was based on information far more substantial than the actual evidence on hand.”

Durst was charged in New Orleans with possession of a weapon by a convicted felon. Those charges were dropped after he was charged with similar counts in federal court, and Durst has remained in federal custody in Louisiana since. His lawyers have said they are eager for their client to return to California to face the murder charges.

Durst’s lawyers said FBI agents questioned in the Marriott lobby and his hotel room for  the 72-year-old Durst without reading him his rights, and did not have a warrant when they began a search of his room that lasted more than an hour.

When they filed for a warrant after the FBI agents that first encountered Durst had “inventoried” the items in his room– including the .38-caliber pistol in the pocket of a jacket in his closet– the warrant application sought almost exactly the items found in Durst’s room.

Detectives also noted in their application handwriting experts had identified Durst as the likely author of the “cadaver” note police received shortly after Berman’s body was discovered– but failed to note that at least one expert had identified another suspect as the writer. Durst’s lawyers also noted that handwriting analysis in general is unreliable.

Durst, a millionaire estranged from a family of prominent New York real estate investors, has a crack legal team and has beaten murder charges once before– in a case where he admitted shooting his elderly neighbor, Morris Black.

Jurors acquitted Durst of murder. At trial, Durst said he shot Black while struggling with a pistol during an argument; his lawyers said Durst’s mild autism was a reason he subsequently panicked and chopped up Black’s body and threw it into Galveston Bay.

But Durst pleaded guilty to felony charges for jumping bond and carrying a weapon while under indictment, convictions that bar him from possessing a firearm.

Attempting to block evidence obtained in a search is a routine defense tactic, but veteran New Orleans defense lawyer Tim Meche said nothing in the 55-page motion to suppress is likely to sway a judge to throw out evidence obtained in the search.

“I didn’t see anything in there that jumped out at me” as a breach of Durst’s rights– at least not one common to many criminal investigations. In hunting or a high-profile suspect, it seems investigators were especially cautious, Meche said.

“There are all kinds of exceptions to everything now in the 4th Amendment arena,” Meche said. “This was the FBI chasing Robert Durst, they weren’t going to screw that up.”

Meche said a more likely course for Durst to beat the gun charge is to exploit one of the exceptions that allow a convicted felon to have a firearm.

“You can say that you armed yourself because you were in immediate need to defend yourself,” Meche said. “He could say that he thought he was being pursued, something like that. He’s got some good lawyers, and that’s where I would see this going.”

Read the full motion to suppress from Durst’s lawyers here.

 

By Andy Grimm (NOLA)

Newly released video shows Robert Durst exposing himself

Millionaire murder suspect Robert Durst was caught on camera exposing himself in a Houston CVS store in July 2014.

The Harris County District Attorney’s Office just released the video of an incident that grab headlines 10 months ago.

In the surveillance video, you can see Durst walking around the pharmacy after he picked up a prescription. He heads to the front counter, where you see him pay a clerk who gives him change. The clerk walks away and then it appears that Durst puts something into his backpack.

The clerk then comes back to the counter and you can see what appears to be the then 71-year-old Durst expose himself to the female clerk. He then stands there, according to witnesses, urinating on a candy display. The clerk pucks up the phone, then helps another customer. Durst appears to pull his shorts back up then just walked out of the store.

The eccentric millionaire pleaded no contest to a misdemeanor charge of criminal mischief stemming from this and paid a $500 fine. Durst also paid CVS more than $7,000 in damages.

Workers inside the store that day told police there was no argument between Durst and anyone else inside the store, and he didn’t say anything to anyone after it happened.

Durst’s lawyer blamed the whole thing on a medical condition.

The I-Team spent months trying to get this video putting in public records request before Durst was arrested in New Orleans and charged with murder.

(KHOU)

Video released of Robert Durst urinating in Houston drug store

Robert Durst is scheduled for an evidentiary hearing Thursday in New Orleans regarding a bizzare incident from last summer at a Houston CVS.

KPRC 2 News obtained surveillance video showing Durst’s arrest in July 2014 for exposing himself and urinating on a candy display at a CVS pharmacy on Kirby Drive. He left the store before police arrived, but later turned himself in.

The hearing is a chance for Durst’s legal team to dispute claims made against him which, if successful, would have to be resolved before trial.

“This was a medical mishap, plain and simple. He had to go and he couldn’t hold it,” said Durst’s lawyer.

In December 2014, Durst pleaded no contest to a charge of criminal mischief. After his plea, Durst was ordered to pay restitution to CVS for the Class C misdemeanor.

“He patronized that store quite often and was very friendly and very well liked by all the staff,” said Durst’s lawyer. “He was embarrassed in that aspect. The people that were so good to him were put, themselves, in an embarrassing situation.”

Durst is currently in a federal jail on a felon in possession of a gun charge. Louisiana state gun and drug charges stemming from his March arrest in New Orleans were dropped. The judge set a trial date on the federal charge for June 22.

Durst is not well, according to Dick DeGuerin, one of Durst’s attorneys.

Durst is an estranged member of the wealthy family that operates 1 World Trade Center. He also faces a murder charge in California in connection with the death of his friend, Susan Berman.

Durst was arrested March 15, less than 12 hours before HBO aired the final segment of “The Jinx,” in which — off camera in a bathroom but with the microphone still live — Durst whispers, “There it is. You’re caught!”

Durst’s lawyers say the arrest in New Orleans was timed to coincide with the final episode of “The Jinx,” which also described the disappearance of his wife, Kathleen, in 1982 from New York; the Los Angeles shooting of Berman, 55, in 2000; and the death of Morris Black in Galveston in 2001.

Durst was posing as a deaf mute in Galveston when he killed and dismembered Black, his 71-year-old neighbor. Durst ultimately won acquittal on the murder charge by arguing self-defense.

At the moment, Durst is being held in New Orleans on a gun charge and is waiting to face a murder charge in California.

(Click2Houston)

Brother could freeze Robert Durst’s millions following legal deal

Millionaire murder suspect Robert Durst may soon be scrounging for money.

The Post has learned his brother, real estate giant Douglas Durst, settled a lawsuit against filmmaker Andrew Jarecki, confirming that Robert was the source of leaked materials about the family for “The Jinx,” the HBO documentary that led to the accused killer’s recent arrest.

The deal, inked Thursday, means Douglas can move to freeze $74 million of his older sibling’s $100 million fortune.

A source told The Post during litigation seeking to determine Jarecki’s sources that if Douglas could prove Robert Durst leaked the information, “the next step is freezing his money.”

Douglas’ lawyer, Charles Moerdler, said his client is mulling his next move.

The money is tied to a 2006 court deal that paid Robert to cut ties with the multibillion-dollar family business, The Durst Organization.

The hit could affect Robert’s ability to pay a team of top-notch defense attorneys to fight pending gun and murder charges — at least without selling off some real estate.

The HBO documentary showed how Robert’s top-dollar Texas legal team was able to win acquittal on charges that he killed his neighbor and threw the dismembered body in Galveston Bay in 2001.

Robert Durst, 72, has been locked in a New Orleans jail since his March 14 arrest, when FBI agents found a revolver and marijuana in his hotel room. He’s also facing possible extradition to California to face charges that he killed his longtime friend Susan Berman after she’d been contacted by the Westchester County DA.

Before Berman’s December 2000 murder, the DA had reopened the investigation into the mysterious disappearance of Robert Durst’s wife Kathleen in 1982.

Douglas Durst, 70, withdrew the Manhattan Supreme Court suit against Jarecki after The New York Times published an article in March revealing that Robert gave Jarecki “unrestricted access” to a trove of 60 boxes stored at a friend’s home.

The trove included confidential family information aired in the HBO series.

(NY Post)

FBI believes Robert Durst is ‘romantically linked’ to New York woman

The FBI believes Robert Durst is “romantically linked” to a New York woman who sent him a package containing $117,000 shortly before his arrest in New Orleans in March.

The details contained in a March search warrant for the package add one more mystery to the many surrounding Durst, the estranged member of a wealthy New York real estate family who is facing federal gun charges in New Orleans and a state charge of murdering longtime friend Susan Berman in Los Angeles in 2000.

After the airing of the second-to-last episode of a recent HBO documentary miniseries about Durst — an episode that law enforcement authorities believe prompted his departure from Houston under an assumed identity — a Campbell Hall, New York, woman who is not his wife leapt into action to help him. But Susan Giordano, who has previously been described simply as a longtime friend of Durst, disputes the agency’s characterization of the pair’s relationship as romantic.

“We were just good friends. We still are,” she said Thursday. “I don’t know where they got that. We’ve been friends for decades. Like I said, we’re just really close friends.”

Giordano told authorities that she mailed the package at Durst’s request. The money came from Durst’s apartment and was not hers, she said. The package was sent on March 12, four days after the airing of the fifth episode of HBO’s “The Jinx.”

Giordano also admitted to attempting to cancel the package’s delivery the morning of March 15 — the morning after Durst’s arrest.

Giordano claims her decision to have the package’s delivery canceled just hours after the arrest was a coincidence. She said she recalled the package because she believed Durst was on the move to New York for his April 12 birthday. She said she did not become aware of his capture until the afternoon of March 15.

“It just so happened that (filmmaker Andrew Jarecki) aired (the series’ final episodes)” at that time, she said. “It was bad timing.”

Giordano said she was interviewed for “The Jinx” but did not watch it.

“I got cut,” she said.
FBI agents arrested Durst on March 14 after spotting him in the lobby of the JW Marriott Hotel on Canal Street. When agents entered his hotel after the arrest, they found on a table next to his bed a piece of hotel stationery with the handwritten letters “UPS” and a series of tracking numbers.

On March 17, FBI agents stopped the package from being returned to New York and seized it, storing it at the agency’s New Orleans offices.

The next day, law enforcement officials interviewed Giordano in New York. According to the search warrant, “After the package was seized, (FBI Special Agent William) Williams learned from a special agent with the New York division of the FBI that Susan Giordano is romantically linked to Robert Durst.”

New Orleans Detective Christopher Harris obtained a warrant to open the package on the night of March 19. Investigators suspected they might find weapons, credit cards, masks, maps or fake IDs — similar to items found in Durst’s hotel room — inside the 16-pound brown cardboard box. Instead, prosecutors later revealed in court, they discovered $117,000.

Police in New York also seized a trove of Durst’s personal records from the cellar of Giordano’s house in New York last month. Giordano told The New York Times that she was sent the files by Durst’s wife, Debrah Lee Charatan. The paper reported later in March that the relationship between Durst and Charatan, who have never lived together and essentially functioned as business partners, has grown even more distant in recent years.

Durst was initially booked in Orleans Parish on state weapons charges. He was held without bail after District Attorney Leon Cannizzaro’s office, pointing to the money and a map of Cuba found in Durst’s room, suggested he posed a serious flight risk.

The state charges have since been dropped, and Durst is now awaiting trial in Louisiana on a federal weapons charge. U.S. District Judge Ginger Berrigan on Monday ordered that he be held in a St. Charles Parish jail.

Giordano said she has retained a lawyer in New York and has been fully cooperative with authorities.

“I don’t have anything to hide,” she said. “I’ve met with anybody who would meet with me.”

By Matt Sledge (The New Orleans Advocate)

Jinxed in Mendo: More details emerge on Robert Durst’s 1995 Mendocino County arrest

Eccentric millionaire and accused murderer Robert Durst awaits extradition from Louisiana to California for the alleged killing of his confidante Susan Berman in December 2000.

Meanwhile, sources with knowledge of the case indicate that federal investigators continue to focus on Durst as a “person of interest” in the unsolved disappearance of Eureka teenager Karen Mitchell in 1997.

Durst, the subject of the six-part documentary series The Jinx, and whose wife, Kathie Durst, first went missing in 1982 in a case that remains unsolved, was arrested in Louisiana last month just before the climactic episode of the HBO series. He was charged by Louisiana officials on drug and weapons charges which were dropped this past week and by federal prosecutors for possession of a firearm following a felony conviction.

The Bohemian obtained a previously unreleased report from the Mendocino County Sheriff’s Office detailing Durst’s arrest in May of 1995 (first reported by the Bohemian on March 25) for “driving under the influence” and possession of marijuana just outside of Mendocino.

Durst’s presence in—and familiarity with—Northern California plays a critical role in the current murder charges he is facing in Los Angeles.

According to the seven-page report, on May 10, 1995, Durst was spotted by a member of the Mendocino County Sheriff’s Office on Lansing Street standing outside his light blue Ford Taurus. According to the report he then “staggered to the rear of the vehicle” and was “swaying side to side.” He got back into the Taurus, headed north, and then “crossed over the yellow line three times.”

The sheriff’s officer had trouble getting Durst to pull over, as he seemed “confused as to my demands.” Once stopped, Durst, reeking of alcohol, according to the report, “staggered” toward the officer. He had difficulty finding his wallet and, in “a slurred speech,” asked the officer why he had been stopped. Durst acknowledged that he had consumed “a bottle of wine” at Cafe Beaujolais, a popular upscale restaurant in Mendocino.

Durst then failed a series of field sobriety tests administered at the scene: he couldn’t keep his balance on one leg; he had trouble counting; he couldn’t stand without swaying; he couldn’t touch the tip of his nose. The officer had to stop him from walking into traffic. Durst was subsequently taken to the sheriff’s substation in Fort Bragg, where he was administered a urine test.

An envelope containing $3,700 in cash and a baggie with less than an ounce of marijuana was found in Durst’s trunk—a combination that would repeat itself in Durst’s encounters with the law for the next two decades. Then, in classic Durst fashion, with phrasing familiar to anyone who watched The Jinx, Durst uttered that “the money and marijuana is mine and that I have always smoked it, even as a kid. . . . So what’s the big deal?”

Durst was released the following morning on $9,500 bail. The result of the urine test showed he was below the legal blood alcohol limit. The next day, Durst’s father Seymour suffered a debilitating stroke. Within a matter of a few days, Durst appeared in New York City at the hospital bed of his stricken father, who died on May 15, shortly after his eldest son’s visit.

Only months prior to his arrest in Mendocino, Durst had purchased an ocean-view home in the rural outpost of Trinidad on the Humboldt coast. His move west came immediately after leaving his position with the Durst Corporation and losing a contentious internal battle with his younger brother, Douglas Durst, for control of the family’s billion-dollar Manhattan real estate empire. Durst lived in his coastal retreat off and on until the killing of Berman in the winter of 2000.

In November 1997, 16-year-old Karen Mitchell disappeared after getting into a car with an older male when she left her aunt’s store at a mall in Eureka. According to Matt Birkbeck, author of the bestselling profile, A Deadly Secret: The Bizarre and Chilling Story of Robert Durst (just re-released by Berkeley/Penguin), Durst—often dressed as a woman—frequented a shoe store owned by Mitchell’s aunt and a homeless shelter at which Mitchell volunteered.

Birkbeck also noted that a composite drawing of the suspect last seen with Mitchell bears a striking resemblance to Durst, in particular, the broad wire-rimmed glasses that Durst wore at the time of Mitchell’s disappearance.

While officials in Humboldt County have refused to acknowledge the whereabouts of Durst at the time of Mitchell’s disappearance, Birkbeck told the Bohemian that he has seen credit card records of Durst’s indicating that “Durst arrived in Eureka on the morning of Mitchell’s disappearance.”

When Durst was arrested in New Orleans last month, authorities found two copies of Birkbeck’s book in his possession. According to Birkbeck, during Durst’s trial for murder, Durst—based on his reading of Birkbeck’s book—expressed concern to a member of his defense team that he would soon be indicted for the murder of Mitchell.

Real estate records obtained by the Bohemian indicate that Durst also owned a pair of properties in San Francisco during the late 1990s and early 2000s. He used dozens of different aliases as he zigzagged across the country, living what Birkbeck characterizes as a “strange vagabond life, using false identities for reasons unknown to anybody.”

In 2001, Durst relocated to Galveston, Texas, where in September his neighbor and so-called best friend, Morris Black, was found dismembered in garbage bags that had been dumped into Galveston Bay. Durst, who had also dressed as a woman in Galveston and used the name Dorothy Ciner, was acquitted on first-degree murder charges based on self-defense.

Prosecutors believe that Durst flew into the Arcata-Eureka Airport around Dec. 19, 2000, and then drove to Los Angeles to kill Berman. Phone records place Durst in Garberville the following morning, on his way down Highway 101 heading south. A letter, alleged in The Jinx to have been written by Durst which directly links him to Berman’s murder, was mailed on Dec. 23, the day before Berman’s body was discovered.

In The Jinx, an irritated Durst asserts that he arrived in Trinidad “long before December 23rd, long before Christmas.” It couldn’t have been that long. According to numerous news sources, Durst was married to his current wife, Debrah Lee Charatan, in Manhattan on December 11.

By Geoffrey Dunn (Bohemian)

Judge orders Robert Durst held in St. Charles Parish

Robert Durst is headed for St. Charles Parish.

U.S. District Judge Helen “Ginger” Berrigan on Monday endorsed a request by the celebrity inmate’s attorneys to move him to the Nelson Coleman Correctional Center in St. Charles Parish from a mental health outpost at a state prison in St. Gabriel.

The move came after the U.S. Marshals Service agreed on the placement in St. Charles while federal prosecutors pursue a gun charge against Durst, the accused Los Angeles murderer and subject of the HBO documentary series ”The Jinx.”

Durst’s attorneys just last week asked Berrigan to hold the 72-year-old real-estate scion at Elayn Hunt Correctional Center, where Orleans Parish Sheriff Marlin Gusman’s office shipped him last month after deeming him a suicide risk.

But in their motion on Monday, they said they had since received an assurance from the U.S. Marshals Service that if Durst were held in St. Charles, he wouldn’t be shipped to another state for any needed medical care. At worst, he’d be sent back to Hunt or to a local hospital for treatment, his lawyers said.

Dick DeGuerin, one of Durst’s lawyers, has said Durst has suffered some significant medical conditions, and in a rambling letter recently to the Los Angeles Times, Durst acknowledged he’s undergone surgery for hydrocephalus, colloquially known as water on the brain.

Durst is charged with murder in the 2000 killing of his onetime confidante, Susan Berman, in Los Angeles. But he’s unlikely to face that charge before he’s prosecuted in Louisiana on a federal indictment from April 10.

Durst faces a count of the interstate transport of a gun as a convicted felon, stemming from the .38 caliber Smith & Wesson revolver authorities found when they caught up with Durst at the JW Marriott hotel on Canal Street on March 14. They also found some marijuana, a mask, a map and other items that authorities say indicated he was ready to flee, perhaps to Cuba, to escape a murder trial in Los Angeles.

Last week, Orleans Parish District Attorney Leon Cannizzaro’s office refused a pair of state gun charges against Durst, citing the federal case.

According to Durst’s attorneys, U.S. Attorney Kenneth Polite’s office doesn’t have a problem with the move to St. Charles. A spokesman for the U.S. Marshals Service did not immediately respond to a call.

Berrigan’s order states that Durst “shall not be transferred to a medical facility outside the State of Louisiana.”

By John Simerman (The New Orleans Advocate)

Robert Durst will be transferred to St. Charles Parish jail

Millionaire murder suspect Robert Durst will be transferred to the St. Charles Parish jail for the duration of the federal weapons case, court records indicate.

U.S. District Judge Helen Ginger Berrigan on Monday approved Durst’s transfer from the Elayn Hunt Correctional Center in St. Gabriel to the lockup in St. Charles Parish, about a half hour from the downtown New Orleans federal courthouse.

Durst’s lawyers had requested the move in a motion filed Monday, reversing course from last week, when they said they asked that Durst remain at Hunt. Orleans Parish prosecutors last week dropped state charges against Durst.

Orleans Parish officials had Durst held at Hunt since shortly after his arrest, saying he was deemed a suicide risk and could not stay at Orleans Parish Prison. Hunt is where mentally ill Orleans Parish inmates are housed. Defendants being held on federal charges typically are held at St. Charles Parish’s Nelson Coleman Correctional Center, where Durst will be housed.

Durst’s legal team said they received “assurances” from federal authorities that Durst will remain in Louisiana until the federal case against him is resolved, and that any medical issues afflicting the 72-year-old would be tended to at the St. Charles Parish jail, Hunt or local hospitals. The U.S. Marshal service has said that Durst will not be transferred to a medical facility outside Louisiana.

Durst was arrested last month in New Orleans after FBI agents searched his room at the J.W. Marriott hotel and found 5 grams of marijuana and a loaded .38-caliber revolver. Durst was initially held on state drug and firearm charges, only to be charged days later for violating federal gun laws.

Durst, who faces murder charges in California, and his lawyers have said the are eager for him to return to Los Angeles for trial.

Durst was charged nearly a decade ago with the murder of his neighbor, Morris Black, in Galveston, Texas. Though Durst fatally shot Black and chopped up the body and threw it into Galveston Bay, jurors acquitted him of murder charges.

But Durst had skipped bail before his trial armed with a pair of handguns, and eventually pleaded guilty to gun charges– felony convictions that made it illegal for him to possess firearms.

By Andy Grimm (NOLA.com)