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Natalie Wood Death

Investigating Detective

Never Thought It Was Murder

11/19/2011 4:03 PM PST BY TMZ STAFF

The detective who investigated the death of Natalie Wood back in 1981 says he would have arrested Robert Wagner himself if the evidence pointed in that direction, but instead he "never really got suspicious of a murder."

Duane Rasure, a retired detective sergeant for the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Homicide Bureau, tells CBS News, "If I have ever the slightest inkling there was a murder, something suspicious, I would have worked it. I did not cover for anybody and I wouldn't cover for anybody. I don't care about their celebrity status. They were people."

Rasure, whose interview airs on CBS tonight, says he believes Dennis Davern, the boat captain from that night, is not telling the full truth and that he is "trying to sell a book and make money off of it."


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This retired cop is either lying or stupid. He just said that he thinks Robert told him the truth even though he also said he knows Robert story changed in his book! I believe Dennis Davern 100%. He has told this story before so it did not take him 30 years to say it. At the very least Robert did not call for help for several hours and did not call the coast guard for four hours and the guy who pulled her out believes she held onto the dinghy for several hours since rigor mortis had not set in so that is something else that this cop is wrong about since he thinks she died right away. This makes Robert responsible for her death since they could have saved her if he had called for help right away. He might even have pushed her into the water.

1067 days ago


"Rasure, whose interview airs on CBS tonight, says he believes Dennis Davern, the boat captain from that night, is not telling the full truth and that he is "trying to sell a book and make money off of it.""

No hes gonna admit that hes a ****ty cop....

1067 days ago

Donald W. Leo    

Police and Prosecuters will never admit they are wrong! This Detective admits that Robert Wagner told him on the boat on the day on the morning of the drowning that the wine bottle had broken "in rough seas." Then Robert Wagner wites a book admitting he smashed it himelf during an argument. The detective acknowledges the inconsistency, says it bothers him, but still insists it was an "accidental drowning." The man did not do his job! If Natalie was having an affair with Christopher Walken, why would she be so stupid as to invite him to come, without a date of his own, on a weekend boat trip

1067 days ago


I don't know what to believe, but I do remember that at the time, several people on the nearest boat were interviewed. They said they could hear a woman yelling, but couldn't make out what she was saying. Now a "witness" is saying she heard something like "Help me! I'm drowning!" ????

1067 days ago


I don't know what to believe, but I remember that people on the nearest boat said at the time that they heard a woman yelling, but couldn't make out what she was saying, so the witness now saying she heard something like, "Help me! I'm drowning!" seems unlikely.

1067 days ago


I had a lot of yachting friends back in the early 80s & know a lot of people in the entertainment industry, and the story I always heard was that Natalie caught RJ & Walken doing it and was furious at RJ. They had a huge fight that went on & on & it is believed she decided to leave the boat, got in the dinghy and rowed off, but fell in somewhere. I don't know if a down jacket floats or not, but it would certainly be soaking wet when submerged in water and would be very heavy. (She didn't drown in snow people) Also, duck feathers may help a duck stay afloat, but a duck has a huge fat layer and is shaped so that it would float.

Regarding the woman that heard someone yelling for help, why the hell didn't she tell someone else on her boat, go up on deck, see if they needed to launch their dinghy and go help the person? Even if they heard Wagner say "we'll be right there", wouldn't you still go see? Also, people keep harping on Natalie being afraid of the water. How afraid could she be if she kept yachting over to Catalina which can be a very rough ride. I've made countless trips to Catalina and the Channel Islands & seen a lot of people hurling right and left. My friends who are afraid of water don't go, ever.

I'm not saying I don't think Wagner is responsible for his wifes death, I do. But a lot of the stories we're hearing are from pretty shady characters. A spoiled, selfish movie star, a drunken captain that ignores one of his passengers cries for help, a witness who claims she heard someone calling for help & 30 years later magically remembers exact words she didn't remember at the time. Oh, and also didn't bother doing anything to help the "drowning" person she heard.

I don't think we'll ever know the real truth unless Walken or Wagner talks, which is highly unlikely.

1067 days ago


Oh, and to add to my shady characters list, the sister Lana Wood, a woman who is known for being an alcoholic/drug addict, a disturbed person who was married & divorced 5 times before she was 30 years old and known for her bizarre behavior and believed to have weird love/hate-jealousy feelings for her more beautiful, talented & successful sister, Natalie.

1067 days ago


Yes...down jackets float. They did a forensic test on the same down jacket she had and concluded that she was floating for a substantial period of time. They know she was alive for hours in the water because when they found her body was stiff, no rigamortas (sp)...RJ...if I were you I would be very concerned as when this is over and your lies come to light, you'll be hanging out with the likes of OJ and Dr. Murry.

1067 days ago


Intended to say her body was not stiff...indicating she had not been deceased that long.

1067 days ago


Another point, if her jacket acted as a life preserver, why didn't she dog paddle over to the nearest boat and scream for help, if the charming males on her boat refused to help. I think one of her early movies, she goes skinny dipping, so I think she could swim; also, she had a swimming pool fcs. I've seen people swim over to other boats anchored many times in differen*****ers. And if Wagner coshed her on the head and threw her in unconscious as some are speculating, how could she yell for help?

1067 days ago


The cop Duane Rasuree is an incompetent dimwit

1067 days ago


ok after reading the entire report submitted to police to reopen this case - now i know sheriff did this for publicity - there is no now evidence = the :ear" witness sold her story back then to the enquierer now to cbs first time she just heard voices and now she help me?? the capt admitted he drank smoked pot and took qualuides b4 the accident, so kind of hard to believe him know - the interesting thing is the capt said he took natalie to a hotel friday night in avalon and they spent the night in the same room hmmmmm - makes you wonder who is jealous of who??? - oh and the capt. is the one who brought the luids on board for his passengers, and he said wagner let him stay at is house and got him extra jobs afterwards - no mention of the "being held prisoner" like the author said - and the author claims that every one who tried to help investigate - all the way to coroner - was fired when they tried to investigate?? = wagner was not that big of star - this was a drunken accident, no one will ever know what happened for sure, even the ppl who were there

1067 days ago


Rigor mortis is a condition that occurs when calcium chemicals pool in the body and cause stiffness. If the person is not on a solid surface, it can change how rigor sets in. Heat and cold also affect rigor. At room temp, 3 hours is when it starts, to a max of 12 for max stiffness, and gone by 72 hours. Cold highly decelerates this process (heat accelerates it). It is called cold shortening. Her rigor may not have set in for several hours after the 3 hour mark depending on the temp of the water. Just further proof that people needto stop acting like they or TMZ are forensic specialists.

1066 days ago


I agree, I believe the Captian of the boat is telling the truth.. But I also do not respect him for not helping Natalie, when Robert Wagner said not to help her and let her learn a lesson.. I dont respect either of these guys, I have a photo Robert Wagner autographed for me 15 years ago at an event in Los Angeles. This story is so horrible i feel like tearing the photo up.

1066 days ago


I still believe it was some kind of cover-up with Robert Wagner. The truth will come out. Don't matter how many years has past. Its just time.

1066 days ago
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