“At this point, it is an accidental death,” William McSweeney, chief of detectives for the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department, told the Los Angeles Times. “Nothing has been discovered to suggest changing that at this time.”
Since the actress drowned on November 29, 1981, the suspicion of murder has never ceased to hover around her husband Richard Wagner.
Two detectives were assigned by the Sheriff of Los Angeles to reopen the investigation into the death of the actress.
This approach was based on new information provided by Dennis Davern, the former captain of the “Splendour,” the yacht upon which the actress and her husband had planned to spend Thanksgiving, along with actor Christopher Walken.
Davern told detectives that he didn’t give a full account of the night in his original statement and claimed Wagner quarrelled prior to her death.
At one point, a violent argument broke out between the two men. When they finally calmed down, Wagner returned to his cabin, but Natalie was not there.
The actress is believed to have tried to leave the Splendour in a small inflatable boat but she supposedly slipped and fell into the water.
While the theory of the accident had been put forward since thirty years ago, the witness said he heard cries for help after the violent argument broke out between Wagner and Walker.