Natalie Wood Murder Revealed

The mysterious death of actress Natalie Wood off the coast of California’s Catalina Island remains one of Hollywood’s great unsolved mysteries. In 2011, LA County sheriff’s officials reopened the investigation, and changed her cause of death to “drowning.”

Natalie Wood

The simplest explanation for the incident was that Wood got up at the end of a rainy night to tighten the line that held the banging Zodiac dinghy to the yacht, slipped, and fell into the water. To learn more about Natalie Wood Murder keep reading the article below.

In her lifetime, Natalie Wood was one of Hollywood’s most alluring stars. She was nominated for three Oscars, had dozens of top notch movie roles and a life that included romantic conquests with American legends like John Ford and Elia Kazan. She would die, however, at just 43 years old. The West Side Story actress was found dead on a yacht off the coast of California’s Santa Catalina Island. Her death, which was ruled an accident in 1981, remains a mystery decades later. The case has become the subject of tabloid speculation and a number of TV specials and books that explore whether or not foul play was involved.

The night of her death, Wood and her husband Robert Wagner were aboard a yacht called Splendour, according to investigators’ reports. The two men got into an argument and she went to bed without him. When he went to join her, she was gone. He figured she must have taken their small dinghy out on the water, which was what she normally did. When she didn’t return, he called Harbor Patrol. They found her body the next morning floating a mile from the Splendour with a small dinghy beached nearby.

Wagner’s initial statement to authorities seemed to imply that Wood simply fell in the water during a struggle over the dinghy. But his accounts have shifted over time, leading some to suspect that he was hiding something. Davern, the boat’s captain at the time of the accident, has also written a book in which he claims that he withheld his account of the incident because he was afraid of being punished by Wagner.

Despite these allegations, Lana Wood told Insider she doesn’t hold Walken responsible for Natalie’s death. In fact, she says that Walken has been helpful in the investigation of her sister’s reopened case.

Why Was She Disappeared?

In the decades since Wood’s death, a lot of speculation has surrounded her disappearance. Some of it has been proven false and other elements remain alarmingly shady. For instance, one of Hollywood’s oldest rumors that a young Natalie was sexually assaulted by a movie star more than twice her age was never proven. But a new book by Natalie’s younger sister alleges that actor Kirk Douglas was behind that alleged assault and that he was the reason for Wood’s mysterious drowning in 1981.

Another of the most disturbing details is that her cries for help went unheard. According to her husband and co-star on the yacht, Robert Wagner, she slipped off the boat while trying to tie down a dinghy. But her cries were so loud that they could be heard by other boats on the water, yet hours passed before anyone aboard the Splendour called for help.

Other evidence has also pointed to the possibility of foul play. For example, investigators found fresh bruises on her body when they first examined the scene, which didn’t look like they were caused by a fall off a yacht. In 2011, LA County sheriff’s officials reopened the investigation and in 2013 changed her cause of death from “accidental” to “drowning and other undetermined factors.”

A few months later, police named Wagner, now 91, a person of interest in the case. Investigators have been trying to interview him for years but he has refused. He’s denied any involvement in his wife’s death and has never been charged.

But the fact is that there are still so many questions about what happened to Natalie that will never be answered unless someone speaks up. Even though Lana’s book accuses her brother-in-law of killing Natalie, she said she didn’t write it to bring down Wagner. She said that the book’s main purpose was to dispel some of the myths and shed light on what really happened.

What Happened to Her Body?

There were a number of theories about what happened to Wood, a three-time Oscar nominee for her roles in “West Side Story,” ”Rebel Without a Cause” and others. In 2008, her husband Robert Wagner wrote an autobiography in which he blamed himself for the actress’s death. He wrote that he had heard arguments between the married couple while on board their yacht that night and that he pushed her into the water after she fell in an attempt to re-tie the dinghy, which was banging against the boat. In 2011, the Los Angeles County coroner reopened the case and changed the official cause of death from accidental drowning to undetermined factors. The new report cited fresh bruises on her arms and knees, as well as a scratch on her neck, as evidence that she had been assaulted before her death.

Authorities found Wood’s body the following morning, floating a mile away from their yacht, with a small dinghy beached nearby. She was wearing a flannel nightgown, a down jacket and socks.

An analysis of her stomach contents placed the time of her death around midnight. Her husband, who was also a passenger on the yacht at the time, had called to report her missing about 1:30 a.m. The Coast Guard was contacted about 3:30 and sent out to search for her. A yacht owner who was in the area at the time described what he saw:

The rescue boat captain who pulled her from the water said that he found her face down, with her legs hanging straight out of the water. Her head was bobbing in the top of her jacket.

It would be the last time the star of movies like “West Side Story” and ”Rebel Without a Cause” was to appear on screen. She died at age 43 while sailing off the coast of Catalina Island in Southern California. Despite the numerous questions and suspicions that have swirled over her death over the years, investigators never charged anyone with murder. But the case has always remained one of Hollywood’s most famous mysteries.

What Can We Learn from Her Death?

The death of Hollywood icon Natalie Wood has never been explained. The sexy blonde star of such classic films as West Side Story, Rebel Without a Cause and Splendor in the Grass died mysteriously on Nov. 28, 1981, at age 43, while on a yacht with her husband, actor Robert Wagner, and film co-star Christopher Walken. The cause of her drowning remains a mystery.

It was a night of drinking and partying on the couple’s yacht, Splendour, off California’s Catalina Island. The party had been going for hours, according to a number of witnesses, when the trio went to prepare to return to shore. It was then that the actress fell overboard, slipping on the yacht’s ski ramp into an isolated cove known as Blue Cavern Point. Her body was found eight hours later, floating face down in the water.

Until now, investigators have focused on the possibility of foul play, but the evidence has been elusive. In 2018, “48 Hours” reported that investigators had reopened the case and called Wagner, who was aboard with Wood, a person of interest. His shifting accounts of what happened that night, and his refusal to speak to authorities, have sparked rumors of a cover-up.

The HBO documentary Natalie Wood: What Remains Behind, which premiered earlier this week, shines a spotlight on her life and work, including new interviews with those closest to her—including her daughter, Natasha Gregson Wagner. The film also includes a direct interview with Wagner.

But in Suzanne Finstad’s book, Natasha, a comprehensive biography of the actress, there are many new details to consider. Finstad examines the evidence surrounding her death, including the coroner’s public pronouncements and conclusions. She points out the chief medical examiner at the time, Dr. Thomas Noguchi, grabbed headlines with sensational news conferences examining the deaths of Marilyn Monroe, Janis Joplin and other celebrities, but failed to conduct basic forensic procedures before declaring them accidental.

Finstad paints a picture of an unrestrained actress who, by her own admission, was a sexual rebel. Her relationship with Wagner, who was at the height of his career and popularity, was volatile. She was a woman who battled mental illness, suffered multiple suicide attempts and underwent daily psychoanalysis. Her greatest fear, which stemmed from a prophecy told to her superstitious Russian mother by a Gypsy, was that she would die in dark water.