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Robert Durst lost his bid for a mistrial on grounds that this murder trial in Los Angeles has been halted for more than three months because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

California Superior Court Judge Mark Windham on Tuesday denied the request of the New York real estate heir, saying it was his own lawyers who asked for the trial to be adjourned until it was safe to resume. The trial is scheduled to resume next month.

Durst, 77, is on trial for the murder of his longtime friend and confidante Susan Berman in her Beverly Hills home in 2000. The reclusive millionaire had conceded through his lawyers that he walked into the house, found her dead and “panicked.” He sent a note to Beverly Hills police that there was a “cadaver” at Berman’s address and ran because he feared he would be a suspect, according to his attorneys.

The jury trial in Los Angeles started March 4 and was expected to take as long as five months. Durst has denied he killed Berman and says he doesn’t know who did, his lawyers told the jury.

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