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Authorities reopen probe into Natalie Wood's 1981 drowning death

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posted on Nov, 18 2011 @ 11:43 AM
Authorities reopen probe into Natalie Wood's 1981 drowning death

The Los Angeles County Sheriff's Office is reopening its investigation into the death of movie star Natalie Wood, who drowned in 1981 while boating off Catalina Island near the California coast, authorities said Thursday.

WOW! So long ago - and now the 'rest of the story' coming out!

Last year, the actress' sister, Lana Wood, and the captain of the yacht on which Wood sailed with her husband, actor Robert Wagner, had asked the sheriff's office to reopen the case.

Natalie Wood once said in a televised interview that her greatest fear was of dark seawater. On November 29, 1981, she drowned in the Pacific Ocean off the isthmus of Catalina Island.

Wood's body was found floating in the water about a mile away from the yacht.

According to police reports, Wood was found wearing a long nightgown, socks, and a down jacket.

The autopsy report shows Wood had two dozen bruises on her body, including a facial abrasion on her left cheek, and bruises on her arms.

More to read here - go to the link.

Captain: Wagner responsible for Natalie Wood death

A yacht captain said on national TV Friday that he lied to investigators about Natalie Wood's mysterious death 30 years ago and blames the actress' husband at the time, Robert Wagner, for her drowning in the ocean off Southern California.

"Was the fight between Natalie Wood and her husband Robert Wagner what ultimately led to her death?" show host David Gregory asked.

"Yes," Davern replied.

"How so?"

"Like I said, that's going to be up to the investigators to decide," the captain said after a long pause.

Time will always tell.

Interesting days ahead!


posted on Nov, 18 2011 @ 11:49 AM
reply to post by silo13

well, they can start with arresting and charging the captain of the yacht with obstruction of justice, and falsifying police report. That will atleast get the ball rolling, and make a statement of them being serious.

posted on Nov, 18 2011 @ 11:52 AM
Boat captain alleges actor Robert Wagner responsible for Natalie Wood's death

The former captain of the boat from which actress Natalie Wood drowned in 1981 alleged on TODAY Friday that her husband, actor Robert Wagner, was responsible for her death.

The spin starts already.

"I made some terrible decisions and mistakes," Davern told NBC News' David Gregory. "I did lie on a report several years ago."

He added, "I made mistakes by not telling the honest truth in a police report."

Unbelievable... Poor choices... Years later...

When pressed by Gregory, Davern said he believed Wagner had intentionally kept the investigation into her death low-profile. And when asked if he thought Wagner was "responsible" for Wood's death, Davern said, "yes, I would say so. Yes."

"We didn't take any steps to see if we could locate her," Davern added. "I think it was a matter of, 'We're not going to look too hard, we're not going to turn on the searchlight, we're not going to notify anybody right now.'"

So the 'Captain' is just as responsible? Ugly stuff.

Why now is because I've been trying to tell information about this for many, many years, but there wasn't really anyone listening until now," he said. "I've been trying to get somebody to listen for a long time and now somebody is listening and they're going to carry on with this investigation. I'm not saying anything different. All the information that I've revealed in the past, it's all in that book, and now it's just up to the investigators to do an investigation."

So, is this a book selling scheme? Or is this real!

The coroner's report from the time of her death indicated that she may have slipped and hit her head after she lost balance from drinking several glasses of wine.

"The rest is just ghoulish nonsense," Wood's attorney, Paul Ziffren, said at the time about speculation that Wood's death was not accidental.

So either this is true, it isn't, or this is all to sell a book.

edit on 18-11-2011 by silo13 because: end quote

posted on Nov, 18 2011 @ 11:55 AM
reply to post by silo13

Christopher Walken was there when she died, too. I wonder what details he knows that never came to light, also.

This supposed explanation about her death never sat quite well with me, so I will be watching to see what the results of this new investigation show.

edit on 18-11-2011 by supine because: (no reason given)

posted on Nov, 18 2011 @ 11:56 AM
aww you beat me to it I just tried to post this thread!
I think this is interesting and I hope the truth comes out as I do not believe she drowned accidentally! I've always thought something was way off in Christopher Walken maybe this is what it is!
It also seems like the captain may just want to sell books he was asked by a reporter on CNN about 20 minutes ago why we should believe him now when he lied to authorities back then. He said he didn't have a reason to lie now. Well I think money from book sales is a good reason!

TMZ link
edit on 18-11-2011 by LorraineRKO because: misspelling

posted on Nov, 18 2011 @ 11:57 AM
reply to post by supine

The articles and the 'old news' says Christopher Walken cleared out and went to his cabin after Wagner broke a wine bottle against a table in anger. From there Wood was mortified' and the argument continued.

So, time to go digging and see what else C.W said now - and then!


posted on Nov, 18 2011 @ 11:58 AM
reply to post by LorraineRKO

OH! You're more than welcome to go with this thread! I only posted it cause non one else had and I'm very interested in it - but - my hands are pretty full as it is!

PLEASE continue with info!


posted on Nov, 18 2011 @ 12:02 PM

More to come...

I hope this isn't just a push for the book...
edit on 18-11-2011 by silo13 because: (no reason given)

posted on Nov, 18 2011 @ 12:02 PM
Natalie Wood is the only kind of wood that doesnt float.

badump bump!

posted on Nov, 18 2011 @ 12:04 PM
If this was a 30-year-old murder of my neighbor, nobody would give a rat's ass about it including the authorities who put it to rest more than three decades past.

But, if you're trying to sell a book that's probably sold 12 copies since it was published in 2009, and maybe throwing it out there for a movie deal, or just sad because you're old and nobody gives a bubbling pile of excrement whether you're alive or not, you trot it out in the media and see who comes out of the woodwork to line your pockets,

If he felt that bad about throwing off the investigators, he'd have brought it up a lot sooner.

But that's just me.

There's probably thousands of others out there who truly believe this peckerhead is as honest and trustworthy as they come and won't take a cent for any financial benefit that comes from this. Yeah, in hindsight, they're probably right.


posted on Nov, 18 2011 @ 12:13 PM

Originally posted by silo13
reply to post by supine

The articles and the 'old news' says Christopher Walken cleared out and went to his cabin after Wagner broke a wine bottle against a table in anger. From there Wood was mortified' and the argument continued.

So, time to go digging and see what else C.W said now - and then!


One crucial protagonist in the Natalie Wood story refused to break his silence. Christopher Walken, with whom Wood may or may not have been having an affair when she died, and who, along with Robert Wagner, was with her the night she drowned, or drowned herself, at the age of 43. Towards the end of her life she took a regular cocktail of drugs - pain medication, sleeping pills - and a fair bit of drink. But many people who saw her around that time felt she was upbeat. She was very close to her two young daughters and maintained a dry sense of humour.

After not reading about this for some years, I was always under the assumption that Walken was around when she died. Perhaps this is what the fight was all about? A supposed affair between Walken and Wood? If that's the case, what a whimp for leaving!

posted on Nov, 18 2011 @ 12:17 PM
reply to post by supine

Honestly that's what I always thought too - the affair between Christopher and Natalie.

I remember wayyyy back when hearing adults talk about this as a 'murder' and 'that's what people get when they play around' kind of talk. It was my first real look into the 'life of adults' and what happened 'behind the scenes' so it's always been a poignant moment for me. Plus, Brainstorm is my fave movie of all time...

So much more to learn here. Again, I have to reiterate - I hope it's not to sell a book. Especially since the anniversary of her death, Thanksgiving '81, is right around the corner. Or should I say 'coroner'...
Bad one I know!

All in all though if this Captain admits to lying and to having doubts, or, out and out accusing Wagner of murder? That opens a whole other can a bait!


edit on 18-11-2011 by silo13 because:

posted on Nov, 18 2011 @ 12:22 PM

One crucial protagonist in the Natalie Wood story refused to break his silence. Christopher Walken, with whom Wood may or may not have been having an affair when she died, and who, along with Robert Wagner, was with her the night she drowned, or drowned herself, at the age of 43.


Has he ever 'spoken' about this???

Let's try to find out.

edit on 18-11-2011 by silo13 because: spacing

posted on Nov, 18 2011 @ 12:24 PM

And there’s this: can you imagine if an event akin to Natalie Wood’s death happened today instead of 1981? Would the prosecutor’s office have any choice other than to file charges against, well, someone? The public pressure — the media blitz, the Twitter feeds, the internet-fed conspiracy theories — might simply be too hard for A DA’s office to ignore.

She left behind children who I think deserve to know that if their Mother's death was a homicide instead of accidental.
I agree with you about starting with arresting the boat captain wonder what the statute of limitations are on obstruction is?

posted on Nov, 18 2011 @ 02:01 PM
Police: Robert Wagner 'not a suspect' in reopened Natalie Wood investigation

The Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department announced in a Friday morning press conference that they were reopening the investigation into Natalie Wood’s 1981 death. Her drowning 30 years ago was ruled an accident, but the case has always been shrouded in mystery. Today, Lt. John Corina said that his office had “received credible and substantial [new] information” from multiple sources that now compels them to take another look.

Investigators plan to interview Dennis Davern, the captain of the boat Wood was on with her husband, Robert Wagner, and co-star, Christopher Walken, at the time of her death. On the Today show, Davern admitted that he had initially lied to authorities about important details regarding Wood’s death and he holds Wagner “responsible” for delaying search-and-rescue efforts at the time Wood went missing on the boat. Corina, however, said that Wagner is not a suspect.

Doesn't that just BEG the question - What about Christopher W???

Ok ok , I had to ask.


posted on Nov, 19 2011 @ 12:01 PM
The investigators are looking at multiple sources so it can't just be based on the captain's words. I do not think the captain would admit to lying to investigators to promote his book...wouldn't he face prosecution for doing so? If the various tabloid reports are correct, It's coming out from Lana Wood that the captain had contacted her in tearful guilty phone calls urging her to reopen the investigation. It could be that in his advancing years guilt is pushing him to fess up to what he knew all those years ago. Face it, this does not make him look good at all.

It's too early to assign guilt to anyone but it is interesting to see this unfold. I was a teenager when this all happened and I liked Natalie's movies. Her children, even the one by Richard Gregson, were raised by Wagner and allegedly cut off from all contact with Natalie's family, including their maternal grandmother according to Lana Wood. They deserve to know the truth of the night their mother was taken from them.

posted on Nov, 21 2011 @ 01:50 PM
Woman Claims She Heard Natalie Wood’s Cries for Help on Night Actress Died

Link with video -

Police have reopened the investigation into the drowning death of actress Natalie Wood, and a witness has now come forward to say she heard the actress screaming for help on the night she died.

Marilyn Wayne, who was boating in the same area that night — approximately 40 yards away from the Splendour, the yacht upon which the actors were staying — said she heard a woman’s cries for help.

In a sworn statement to investigators, Wayne said she and her boyfriend, John Payne, were sleeping aboard a sailboat, the Capricorn, on Nov. 28, 1981. The window of the cabin was open.

“A woman’s voice, crying for help from drowning awakened John, and he awakened me. ‘Help me, someone please help me, I’m drowning’ we heard repeatedly. Alarmed, I called out to my son, who also heard the cries, and looked at his new digital watch: it was just minutes after 11:00 P.M.,” she said in her statement.

What stopped her and her boyfriend from going to help? Just asking.

According to Wayne’s statement, Payne turned on the sailboat’s beam light and played it over the area while she went up onto the deck, though it was dark and damp and she says that she was unable to see anything.

“While listening to the cries, we called the harbor patrol but no one answered. Then we called the sheriff’s office in Avalon, 12 miles away, and whoever answered told us a helicopter would be sent, but it did not come. We heard loud music coming from somewhere, so thought there was a party on a nearby boat,” the statement said. “Then I heard a man’s voice, slurred, and in aggravated tone, say something to the effect of, “Oh, hold on, we’re coming to get you,” and not long after, the cries for help subsided, but we heard the cries for up to 15 minutes. We returned to bed, terribly disturbed.”

How horrible for her. I hope she's not lived with too much guilt and remorse for all these years. (/sarcasm)

When she woke up the next morning, she says, she saw police at the boat located near the Capricorn, and learned that Wood, a passenger on that board, had drowned.

Wayne, a former stockbroker, said in the statement that she doesn’t believe the initial investigation was thorough enough, that police never interviewed her and that she received a threatening note cautioning her to keep quiet about what she knew.

Ok I'm setting up my balance. On this side the 'threatening note' is truth. On that side, it's not and she's covering her lack of participation in saving a woman who was screaming for her life for 25 minutes (from the video).

“After all I’ve learned since my own direct experience with the death of Natalie, I am stunned that Robert Wagner has never been properly interrogated in regards to Natalie Wood’s death. In my opinion, Natalie Wood’s case is one of the top most botched cases of the 20th century, and I am still willing to offer my assistance should you finally realize that this case needs what every death case deserves: a full and proper investigation,” her statement said.

The captain of the Splendour, Dennis Davern, said that he believes that Wagner is to blame for Woods’ death.

“Yes I would say so,” Davern said on NBC’s “Today” last week when he was asked if Wagner was responsible. He admitted that he may have been at fault as well, saying, “We didn’t take any steps to see if we could locate her. It was a matter of don’t look too hard, don’t turn on search light, don’t call anyone.”

That's pretty damning. Or, he's trying to sell a book...

Davern and Marti Rulli co-authored the 2009 book “Goodbye Natalie, Goodbye Splendour,” about the circumstances surrounding the actress’ death. He and Lana Wood, Natalie Wood’s sister, asked authorities to reopen the case last year.

How sad for Wood's friends and family to have to relive their loss. On the other hand - how absolutely wonderful they might finally find out the truth and gain a measure of peace all the years of questions must have made so very elusive.

edit on 21-11-2011 by silo13 because: clip

posted on Nov, 25 2011 @ 10:47 AM
Here is a question regarding the death of Natalie Wood....

Were Christopher Walken and Robert Wagner having an affair?

posted on Dec, 3 2011 @ 12:56 AM
reply to post by caladonea

Were Christopher Walken and Robert Wagner having an affair?

I'm glad you asked. It's always been at the back of my mind, young Hollywood males in lust.
I can't see why not.

posted on Jul, 7 2012 @ 09:55 AM

Natalie Wood Death Now 'Undetermined'


Nearly 31 years after actress Natalie Wood drowned while on a boat cruise off Catalina, the LA County Coroner has changed her death certificate from "accident" to "undetermined," reports TMZ. The investigation was re-opened last November after the boat's captain made comments that raised doubts about how she died. Authorities still believe Wood drowned, but the issue is how she ended up in the water, and detectives are saying that some of the bruising on Wood is inconsistent with drowning. Also on the boat were husband Robert Wagner and Christopher Walken.

Hmmmm, the heat is turned back on.

See 'Newser' (source link listed above) for more information.

I can't wait until someone has the garbanzo-beans to force Mr. Walken back into an interview. Would LOVE to see that!


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