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William McSweeney, chief of detectives for the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department, is quoted as saying that after several weeks of new interviews and other investigations, there is no evidence the death of the actress was a homicide.
“At this point, it is an accidental death. Nothing has been discovered to suggest changing that at this time,” McSweeney told The Times.
Despite that, the case is not yet closed, he added. Detectives are still looking at some aspects of the case. They are also attempting to provide answers to questions that were not answered at the time of the original investigation. He said this is a “cold case” and that it could still become active again if there is additional evidence in the future. However, he said it is unlikely the case will ever lead to a criminal action against anyone.
Actor Robert Wagner had been the subject of much speculation but the Sheriff’s department had said from the start he was not a suspect.
The case had been re-opened after the captain of the yacht on which Wood and Wagner and actor Christopher Walken were staying on Thanksgiving weekend that year wrote a book and came forward saying he had not told the truth at the time of the original incident. He and the author of the book presented what they said was new evidence, including sworn statements from others who said they had knowledge of the events that night.
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