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Natalie Wood Investigation

Exercise in Futility

11/22/2011 6:00 AM PST BY TMZ STAFF

Natalie Wood & Robert Wagner

Sources in the L.A. County District Attorney's Office are scratching their heads over the Natalie Wood death investigation, because they say there's no way the D.A. is going to prosecute Robert Wagner or anyone else.

Although the L.A. County Sheriff's Dept. says Robert Wagner is not a suspect, it's pretty clear -- as the last person to see Natalie Wood alive --  he's the target of the probe. 

Under California law, even if Wagner accidentally pushed Natalie into the dark water ... the most he could be charged with is involuntary manslaughter.  But here's the problem -- there's a statute of limitations of 3 years for that crime, so prosecutors would have had to file charges 27 years ago.   Ditto voluntary manslaughter, which has a statute of limitations of 3 years.

The only crime for which anyone could be prosecuted is first degree murder, because there's no statute of limitations.   Remember, there are no possible witnesses other than Robert Wagner.  Short of a bizarre confession, D.A. sources say there's no chance of a prosecution.  BTW, there's a 6-year statute of limitations on second degree murder.

As for why the Sheriff is investigating the death ... one D.A. source said, "It's an exercise in futility.  I just don't get it."

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108 COMMENTS

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76.

Susan     

They are bringing this up around the time that they will be reviewed for abuse in their prisons (OBVIOUSLY) they are trying to sway media attention from the real problem they have which is beating the crap out of inmates and then getting caught on phone cameras.

1067 days ago
77.

Sally    

It is an exercise in futulity but it will show that the LA Judicial System did not do their jobs all of those years ago and someone got away with murder! Too bad there was never justice for Natalie.

1067 days ago
78.

lsingy    

Regarding the comments of Let it go" and "why do you care losers" I am seeing with these comments, :ts too late, it's all to sell book etc." ALL TRUE, but hey, whats wrong with just gabbing about a true mystery, folks buy mystery books by the millions, why so hostile just about discussing a real one, no matter how old? Relax, just human nature, no need to be so hostile and insulting...gawd, its just TMZ...

1067 days ago
79.

amc    

I vote for the captain in the bedroom with the candlestick

1067 days ago
80.

Debdenis    

Isn't it true that the suspect would have to be held and charged with the crime that was used 30 years ago? That is how they were able to charge that Siskle guy for the murder of the friend, 25 years late.

1065 days ago
81.

astaire10    

I hate believing RJ to "leave her in the water" to "teach her a lesson", BUT..IF there is credible proof out there, even if he never gets prosecuted..I hope his reputation WILL be, IF..he deliberately left her in the water...He was seething with arrogance, drink and jealousy that night..WALKEN should speak, say SOMETHING! For NATALIE, for GOD'S SAKES! For NATALIE!

1065 days ago
82.

lur    

Why dont the cops work on the kelly Thomas case....You know the guy they murdered in cold blood for fun. If your famous you can kill anybody. Im so sick of the B.S. legal system. Its a joke!!!!

1064 days ago
83.

Lawrence C. Barber, Ph.D.    

This is shameful and wrong. My belief that if a death was unsolved, the case was to remained opened. Indefinately. Something is seriously wrong in the legal system.

1061 days ago
84.

patricia lentricchia    

I am of the opinion that there is much more in the Natalie Wood case than we know and I am sure that a Lie detector test was given to Wagner but I still feel that all is questionable here....and the LAPD....remembering OJ and other mess ups;makes me wonder....but we just have to let Natalie live on in our hearts.

1046 days ago
85.

Eddie Greenberg    

Yes it's 30 years, but so what? There has been no justice in all of that time. Natalie Wood deserved better. This investigation should set the record straight. Natalie Wood died and the last person to have seen her knows oh so much more. The world and her children need to know just what kind of an "accident" this was!

1038 days ago
86.

NORMAN SHAPIRO    

MY OVERSIGHT. THERE IS A COMMENT HEREIN BELOW STATED THAT THERE IS A TERM'COL" CASE. WE SEE THAT ALL THE TIME NOT JUST AS A DRAMA BUT DO***ENTED!!

961 days ago
87.

NORMAN SHAPIRO    

ONE DOES NOT "ACCIDENTAlly" push when one is a mariner, for one knows the results, particularly when she didn't know how to swim. I believe a petition needs to be distributed for L.A. County begin investigating deeper for an ultimate prosecution.

961 days ago
88.

NORMAN SHAPIRO    

THE TERM PUSHING IS INTENTIONAL!! INTENTIONAL IS WITH MALICE OF FORETHOUGHT, EVEN IF THE "SPUR" OF THE MOMENT, WHICH IS MURDER, MAYBE 2ND DEGREE, BUT----. SO, WE, THE PUBLIC, ARE BEING "PLAYED WITH".

961 days ago
89.

NORMAN SHAPIRO    

AS FAR AS I'M CONCERNED IT'S A CROCK OF YOU KNOW WHAT!! THIS STINKS LIKE THE OJ MURDER OF HIS WIFE WITH THE L A JUDICIAL SYSTEM.
MURDER HAS NO STATUTORY LIMIT.
THEY'RE TAKING THE POSITION OF "MANSLAUGHTER"? THIS BULL****. AS FAR AS I'M CONCERNED THE ATTORNEY GENERAL'S OFFICE OF CALIFORNIA,, MORE THAN LIKELY, TOLD TO LAY OFF FOR THE FINANCIAL CONDITION OF CALIFORNIA!!
THE TIME PERIOD TO PROSECUTE THE CASE, AGAIN, WILL BE VERY EXPENSIVE FOR THE CALIFORNIA JUSTICE SYSTEM. SO A "GIVE UP" IS BEST.

961 days ago
90.

jessdecristo    

Only God knows what really happenned and who really is the blame, and God has NO statue of limitations. He could care less about man made laws and rules, he has his very own. You have to rememeber that Natalie was no nun , she had played the field just like Bob & Stephanie , since ever , it was their way of life. It kinda hurts to say this because I grew up admiring Bob , " It takes a thief " is on e of my all time favorite t.v. series , and in real life he is a beautiful decent man, however , anyone can go crazy in a crime of passion or should I say lust. Christopher Walken . wasn't the family's peacher I'll say this. You play with fire , sooner or later you're gonnaget burnt.

878 days ago
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