Wagner refuses to answer more questions about wife's death
Actor Robert Wagner has declined to be interviewed by detectives in a renewed inquiry into the drowning death of his wife Natalie Wood three decades ago.
The 'Hart to Hart' star did talk to the authorities soon after Wood’s drowning in 1981.
But he is the only person who was on the yacht the night Wood died who has not spoken to detectives as part of the latest inquiry, despite repeated requests and attempts, detective John Corina said.
Blair Berk, a lawyer for Wagner and his family, said the actor had co-operated with authorities since his wife died.
Detectives began re-investigating the case in November 2011, and have talked to more than 100 people, but Wagner has refused and Mr Corina said the actor’s representatives have not given any reason for his silence.
The detective’s remarks provided new insight into the case that has remained one of Hollywood’s enduring mysteries.
Earlier this week, coroner’s officials released an updated autopsy report that had been under a security hold. It detailed why Wood’s death had been reclassified from an accidental drowning to an drowning caused by “undetermined factors”.
“Mr Wagner has fully co-operated over the last 30 years in the investigation of the accidental drowning of his wife in 1981,” Ms Berk said in a statement.
“Mr Wagner has been interviewed on multiple occasions by the Los Angeles sheriff’s department and answered every single question asked of him by detectives during those interviews.”
Ms Berk said after 30 years, neither Wagner nor his daughters have any new information to add. She said the latest investigation was prompted by people seeking to exploit and sensationalise the 30th anniversary of the death.
The authorities have not identified any suspects in the case.
Wood, 43, was on a yacht with Wagner, actor Christopher Walken and the boat captain on Thanksgiving weekend of 1981 before she somehow ended up in the water.
Mr Corina said Walken gave a prepared statement, and spoke to detectives for an hour.
Detectives have also interviewed other actors who knew both Wagner and Wood to learn more about their relationship.
Mr Corina said detectives have tried at least 10 times to interview Wagner but have been refused.
He said some of the refusals came from the actor’s lawyer, and that detectives at one point travelled to Colorado to try to speak with Wagner but were unsuccessful.
Mr Corina said the latest inquiry had turned up new evidence.
He said: “Most of the people we’ve talked to were never talked to 30 years ago. We’ve got a lot of new information.”
Asked if the information might lead to criminal charges, he said that would be up to prosecutors if they are presented with a case.
Coroner’s officials released an updated autopsy report on Monday that detailed the reasons Wood’s death certificate was changed last year from a drowning death to “drowning and other undetermined factors”.
The new report states the change was made in part because investigators could not rule out that some of the bruises and marks on Wood’s body happened before she went into the water.
Wood was famous for roles in films such as 'West Side Story' and 'Rebel Without A Cause' and was nominated for three Academy Awards during her lifetime.