Natalie Wood’s Death Case Reopened by L.A. Investigators

Natalie Wood’s death is being reopened for investigation after the Los Angeles  County Sheriff’s Department has obtained new information in the case from multiple sources.  The 30 year old case of the actress’ death was initially ruled an accidental drowning, but Lt. John Corina announced at a news conference “recently, we received information which we felt was substantial enough” to warrant another look.

Wood’s death, on Nov. 29, 1981, in the waters off Santa Catalina Island, has consistently been as a subject of Hollywood fascination. On that fateful night, she was aboard the yacht Splendour along with her husband, Robert Wagner, the actor Christopher Walken, and Dennis Davern, the boat’s captain.

Lieutenant Corina said that Mr. Wagner was not a suspect, but he declined to describe what information had led the Sheriff’s Department to reopen the case, or to say who had provided it.

At the time of her death, Wood, who was 43, had recently finished a movie, “Brainstorm,” that co-starred Mr. Walken, and was seen as something of a comeback vehicle for an actress whose most noted performances had occurred years before.

Wood was three times nominated for acting Oscars, though she never won. Her last nomination, in 1964, was for her lead role in “Love With the Proper Stranger.”

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