Robert Durst, son of New York real estate mogul Seymour Durst, was arrested in New Orleans
Saturday night. Durst has been a suspect in the deaths of three people
and admitted he cut up a body in Texas in 2001. He's also the subject of the HBO documentary The Jinx: The Life and Deaths of Robert Durst
I spoke to John Waters this morning for a preview of his appearances at the Tennessee Williams New Orleans Literary Festival
next week and asked him about the Durst situation. Waters likes to watch criminal trials and famously attended several Manson Family trials. (He also attended Watergate trials and said he'd like to be at the Boston Bomber trial.)
In his book Role Models
, Waters includes a very long essay about Leslie Van Houten, a Manson Family member convicted of stabbing Rosemary LaBianca.
The Durst news was still fairly new to Waters, but here's a transcript of that part of the conversation.
I never got arrested in New Orleans. I bet that’s not a great place to go to jail in. I have a feeling it might be rather ... primitive
Gambit: Are you following Durst, who just got arrested here?
Yes. That’s what you get for doing reality television. He deserves it for that more than the murder.
But didn’t he just not take his mic off? Can they use that? That is what got him arrested? … Or he’s nuts, or who knows. Just because he mumbles to himself “I killed ’em all” — that’s not exactly on the record. Nobody read him his rights before he said that.
: I wouldn’t have said that near a cop…
: Well, what did he do that show for? He’s crazy or stupid. Why would he do a reality show if he got off and they didn’t charge him and then he does a show that calls attention to it? Why would he do that if he did it? Not too smart.
Is that the only reason he got arrested, because he said “I killed 'em all”? "Killed" in comedy means "made ’em laugh." That’s what I would say if I were his defense lawyer.
: His lawyer has some exotic arguments.
: That’s what "kill" means in show business.
: He’s not in show business…
He is in show business! He has a 13-part series. That’s show business. He lived as a woman in Galveston [Texas]. That’s show business.