The LA Coroner's office relooked at the death of Natalie Wood last year and changed the cause of her 1981 death in the water off Catalina Island from accidental to undetermined. That's still where it stands, meaning that sheriff's homicide detectives carry the case as open. Last summer's coroner's report, which was released today, notes bruises and scratches that occurred before Wood drowned, but makes no conclusions about them.
From Richard Winton and Andrew Blankstein of the LA Times:
Despite new revelations about the death of Natalie Wood contained in an autopsy report released Monday, Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department sources said detective are far from ready to classify the case as a homicide.
The coroner's review found that the actress had several fresh bruises and scratches on her arm, wrist and neck that likely occurred before she landed in the Pacific Ocean and drowned.
One law enforcement source told The Times that detectives have been reexamining the case for more than a year and have gathered new evidence. But the evidence still leaves the death as "undetermined," said the source, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because the case was ongoing.
“This remains an ongoing investigation,” said Steve Whitmore, the Los Angeles County sheriff’s spokesman. “Yes this is a revelation to the public but this report was written in June 2012.”A sheriff's spokesman said his department has known the contents of the new autopsy for some time.
Photo: Wood and husband Robert Wagner