Robert Wagner is Now ‘Person of Interest’ in Natalie Wood Death

Actor Robert Wagner and former wife Natalie Wood, on board the Queen Elizabeth II in April 1972, after a hectic storm at sea, where they announced that they would remarry. (AP Photo/Steve Wood)
AP Photo/Steve Wood

CBS’ investigative newsmagazine 48 Hours is set to report that actor Robert Wagner is now considered a “person of interest” in the 1981 drowning death of his wife, actress Natalie Wood.

Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Investigators, who reopened the case in 2011, spoke with 48 Hours correspondent Erin Moriarty about the new revelations their investigation has uncovered.

“As we’ve investigated the case over the last six years, I think he’s more of a person of interest now,” Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department Lieutenant John Corina told Moriarty, a preview of the report aired on CBS This Morning on Thursday. “I mean, we know now that he was the last person to be with Natalie before she disappeared.”

While Wagner admits in his 2008 memoir that he was the last person to see Wagner alive, investigators say an autopsy report revealing bruises on Woods’ body raised red flags.

“She looked like a victim of an assault.” Corina said of Woods. “I think it’s suspicious enough to make us think that something happened [and] I don’t think she got into the water herself, I don’t think she fell into the water.”

Robert Wagner and Natalie Wood are shown arriving for the 50th Annual Academy Awards in Los Angeles, April 3, 1978. (AP Photo)

American actor Robert Wagner with his former wife American actress Natalie Wood, 23rd April 1972. (RChris Wood/Daily Express/Hulton Archive/Getty Images)

Wagner and Wood were yachting off the Catalina Island in California, along with actor Christopher Walken and yacht captain Dennis Davern, the night she drowned in November 1981.

The 48 Hours report, entitled Natalie Wood: Death in Dark Water, will feature new witness accounts.

“I haven’t seen him tell the details that match all the other witnesses in this case. I think he’s constantly changed his story a little bit,” Corina said of Wagner who did not provide a statement to CBS. “And his version of events just don’t add up.”

Natalie Wood: Death in Dark Water airs Saturday at 10 pm ET on CBS.

Follow Jerome Hudson on Twitter @jeromeehudson