Death of Natalie Wood: the font looks again to her husband Robert Wagner

News 2 February, 2018
  • AFP


    Friday, February 2, 2018 05:02

    Friday, February 2, 2018 05:02

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    LOS ANGELES | The american police force, relying on new evidence in the case of death by drowning in 1981, actress Natalie Wood, one of the most ancient mysteries of Hollywood, looks again to the husband of the star, actor Robert Wagner.

    Robert Wagner, 87 years, has been designated a “person of interest”, the stage presiding over a formal designation as a suspect, said in a press release Nicole Nishida, a spokesperson for the sheriff of Los Angeles (west), adding that new evidence present “a new sequence of events” on the circumstances of the death that had moved the country as a whole.

    The star of “West Side Story” Natalie Wood, then 43 years old, had been found drowned November 29, 1981 while she was boating near Catalina island, in the bay of Los Angeles, with her second husband, actor Robert Wagner, actor Christopher Walken, a friend of the couple, and the captain of the yacht “The Splendour”.

    The police had concluded an accident but the investigation was reopened in 2011 after of “significant new information” provided in particular by the captain of the boat, Dennis Davern, according to which the couple had quarreled just before that Natalie Wood disappears. The captain had realized that she was not on board at midnight, and that Wagner had waited too long before calling for help.

    The Los Angeles police department had, however, found no evidence to support the thesis of the murder. The cause of death had been classified as “drowning and other factors undetermined”. According to a new forensic report revealed in early 2013, the couple and Walken were saoûls and the bruises found on the body were perhaps not accidental.

    “A new sequence”

    “For the first time, we have records with a new sequence of events on the boat that night,” according to Ms. Nishida.

    A witness has reported hearing screams and thuds coming from the cabin of the couple. Other witnesses referred to a dispute between a man and a woman to the back of the boat. They said that they had thought that it was the voice of Natalie Wood and Robert Wagner, she added.

    “The statements of these new witnesses differ from the original version of events told by previous witnesses, including the individuals aboard the boat,” according to Ms. Nishida.

    Robert Wagner, who was suspected for a long time of not having said everything about what had happened that night, had refused to talk to investigators after the reopening of the investigation, arguing that he had already answered all the questions.

    “We have enough evidence to make an arrest at the time that it is? Not,” added Mrs. Nishida. “We will continue to pursue an investigation on a suspicious death. However (…) we know that even the most difficult cases can be solved when witnesses are present.”