View Full Version : SDSO...Reasons To REOPEN Rebecca's Death Investigation!! **LIST ONLY NO DISCUSSION**

09-26-2011, 07:02 PM
This is not a thread for arguments or discussions of issues. There are threads in which to have discussions.

This thread is to represent the information and questions that have been presented in these forum posts or in MSM, that call for the responsibility of a need for further investigation into Rebecca's death.

This thread should be an area that allows a law enforcement officer, a family member, lawyer or other Websleuth posters/readers to see reasons and facts that for this opinion. This should not be a place for oposing opinions as we have threads for that purpose, as noted above.

Thank you. I will take the liberty to post some previously made posts, by others. If anyone has an issue with my re-posting of their statements, please notify me and I will remove your posts!

I feel there needs to be a place to keep this information together, as it is very important and pertinent information and may be of help to someone.

09-26-2011, 07:04 PM
I give full credit to Smooth Operator, who posted this magnificent synopsis.

- Rebecca's cell phone being forensically investigated

- The inconsistent claim of a phonecall placed by Jonah Shacknai at 12:30am when there is no record of the call or message.

- A court documented lie from Jonah Shacknai repeatedly stating to LE that he never left the hospital during the hours in question.. This false statement used as probable cause in an affidavit for SW of Rady's security video to verify Jonah's statement..

- Found in a separate affidavit that Jonah changed that original statement(he'd made more than on one occasion) that he never left the hospital during the hours in question to his indeed having left the hospital around 1am and not returning to the hospital til after 7am(during those hours Rebecca's TOD along with discovery of her body occurred)

- there being no subpoenas for the RMcDH which would be mandatory in establishing Jonah's whereabouts during this time in question since he has changed where he states that he was from the hospital to now the RMcDH.

- there now being confirmed multiple witnesses to hearing a woman scream the night in question. ATLEAST one of those witnesses stating they attempted to tell LE of this more than once.

- confirmed witness that saw an UNidentified female at the Shacknai mansion during the time in question

- along with Nina's 10:41pm late night need to suddenly speak with Rebecca face to face.. When just hours prior she had been face to face with her having every opportunity in the world to discuss Max's accident as Rebecca was her ride from the airport when she arrived earlier in Coronado..

- strangely and again inconsistent with what phone records show Nina claims the text message was over an hour earlier in the evening when she sent it.. Phone records prove it to have been 10:41pm not 9:30

- one of the newest pieces of info to come to light that IMO I find to be the most IMPORTANT is seeing the grave mistake made by a physician on staff at Rady's Children's hospital and his mistake included stating false claims of inconsistent injuries as well as his belief that Max was suffocated
Prior to the fall. His taking this so far as to have a pending protective order in place and LE's full involvement of these false allegations.. IMO with as far as this grave mistake was taken by this doctor including social workers and LE there is no way possible that the parents of Max were not informed of this physicians mistaken beliefs and the legal steps being taken because of those false claims and allegations.. It was only after Max's thorough autopsy which was found to have been extensive severe injury to spinal column and brain stem that his mistaken claims and allegations were 100% disproved and found to have zero basis.. Proving the fall to have been accidental as well as all injuries consistent with the magnitude of that fall.. Sadly for Rebecca this was found too little, too late!! She was already dead..

Feel free to add to my list of info and evidence that would warrant her case being re-opened and thoroughly investigated.

09-26-2011, 07:06 PM
Thank you defense, very telling information, imho:

Hmmm reading search warrants again..... LE didn't request the hospital video surveillance video until the 24th of august. wtf is that all about what freaking investigating did they do until August 24th when they needed evidence to prove suicide???

09-26-2011, 07:07 PM
According to Dr. Wecht, this exact point is true!

Per blunt force trauma to the top of Rebecca's head ...

Seems examination by an ME could determine what possibly made it and if it was enough to daze her, knock her out, etc.

09-26-2011, 07:08 PM
Not the usual type of investigation techniques, from what I understand.

..ahhh..so, they'll "just take his word for it" that he was in fact there from 1:00-7:00..

..and add it to their "just taking his word for it" as to what he said on the voice mail ( that was a big part of why LE says she decided to kill herself.)

..and they wonder why the public ( and her family ) doubts/questions SDPD???

09-26-2011, 07:10 PM
To the best of my knowledge, there have been no pictures of the binding ON Rebecca released, so this has not been addressed or answered.

I wonder if you can tell if it was a right handed or left handed person that made those knots? I haven't watched the video do the knots match up EXACTLY .. left over right type thing?

09-26-2011, 07:11 PM
Sorrell, I think the post is very pertinent, even without the last paragraphs!!

ITA Time.

If the subgaleal hemorrhages were the result of RZ's head striking the balcony balusters, or the balcony supports below, or the shrubbery, or even the exterior wall of the house, there should have been evidence of those surfaces on her scalp and/or in her hair (i.e. minute paint flakes from the balcony, minute rust flakes from the balcony, plant material from the shrubbery, or particles of the surface of the exterior wall of the house), especially considering the impact of a 9'2" fall.

If her head contacted the shrubbery, strands of her hair should have also been found in the shrubbery and/or pieces of shrubbery should have been found in her hair - again, considering the impact of a 9'2" fall.

ETA: No materials of the above sort were noted in the AR, which leads me to believe @ this point in time that the subgaleal injuries were caused by something other than the above-noted surfaces or objects.

09-26-2011, 07:13 PM
Seems like a valid and important factor to me!!!

To the Reinvestigation Reasons list, I would add that LE did not document nor release the total amount of tow rope used at the crime scene. (If the total amount is inconsistent with a standard tow rope of the same manufacturer, there's a missing piece of rope that was removed from the scene.)

09-26-2011, 07:15 PM
All of these points have been brought up previously by various posters, but I needed one post to sum it up! Thank you Cal Elliott!

Astonishing indeed. Brings me back to these three questions:

Why did Adam Shacknai immediately conclude that Rebecca "hung herself," as per his text to Jonah?

Why did Jonah Shacknai immediately accept that Rebecca "killed herself" as per his call to Dina?

Why did LE in turn pursue such a lop-sided investigation?

What could cause these three things to happen in sync?

Could the document addressed to Jonah have been a statement about Dr. Peterson's speculation about Max being suffocated? And if so, how and when did it get there? If not, what could it have been? When did LE learn about the Peterson aspects?

That LE treated RZ body so disrespectfully because LE, however wrongly, assumed she was a child murderer, would explain (but not justify by any stretch of the imagination) some of their actions.

Any thoughts on what else could have been in the room, planted or not, that could have been so persuasive?

09-26-2011, 07:17 PM
Yippie Skipee!!

One possibility: If it was a two-person job, one person could have propped up RZ body on the table while the other worked backwards to what turned out to be the bed to do the deed. That is, IF they used the tow rope's full uncut length, which I personally don't believe is the case. LE left out total rope length in their reports.

09-26-2011, 07:20 PM
Excellent question!!!!

I like how SD Sheriff's invoked the "Science doesn't lie" meme, yet any average middle school student could come up with more that should have been investigated.

I would take your questions a bit further. Did the cut/frayed end of the rope over the balcony match the other end hanging down? If not, then that would suggest the stories don't match, the rope was longer, etc. If I were teaching middle school students to 'investigate' a mock up version of this, I'm afraid they would not receive passing grades for the same performance we got from LE.

09-26-2011, 07:22 PM
This has been brought up multiple times, by multiple posters and we can not get an answer to this, period!!

From Time
Expert pathologists have confirmed that Rebecca died while on her back – not from or while hanging. Lividity was fixed in her back, not in her legs or feet. Renowned pathologist Dr Cyril Wecht has reviewed the autopsy report and has concluded this is not a suicide and that she had blunt force trauma in four places on the top of her head, inconsistent with the fall and consistent with blows that could have rendered Rebecca unconscious.

WOW... just WOW!!!! this has to re-open the case.... and the murderer is still out there and getting all this info

Will JS cut and run for the border with all his money.... ????

09-26-2011, 07:23 PM
Thank you! Good links to keep Anne Bremners statements accurate.

Here are some links to the Dr. Drew episodes where the family attorney Anne Bremner was a guest and first spoke of RZ death occurring while she was on her back. As you can see it was early this month.

9/06 - Dr. Drew - Guest - Anne Bremner

9/08 - Dr. Drew - Guest Anne Bremner - speaks of death came while on her back

09-26-2011, 07:25 PM
Again, brought up by many and never addressed by SDSO or in the PC:


Since I do watch a lot of CSI shows and Forensic Evidence shows, I'm sure from the actual, true cases on Tru TV of Forensic Evidence shows, they now claim to be able to get finger prints from INSIDE gloves, and DNA as well.

09-26-2011, 07:26 PM
Would you please be so kind as to repost your excellent post with pictures here? Thank you!!!


This is my best guess. I didn't have everything perfectly tied so the feet didn't come up as far as I thought they should have but this is what I think happened and she was cut down soon enough and laid on her back in the grass to account for the livor mortis on her back:

Certainly fits the rigor patterns, does it not?

09-26-2011, 07:28 PM
Bears repeating, as LE did not seem to try any enactments of suicide and certainly not of this scenario!

FWIW, I set up the scenario on my porch, I was easily able to hop twice without losing my balance with my hands and feet bound. I also had my husband try to pick me up and throw me over without stepping off the carpet. He was able to do it by hooking one arm around my shoulders and the other under my knees. He didn't need to move his feet out onto the balcony where footprints other then mine would be left at all. (he didn't really throw me over :P)

09-26-2011, 07:30 PM
Seems like an appropriate question that should be answered!

One thing to remember when thinking about the livor mortis, Rebecca was on her left side with her arms behind her back and her knees and legs bent while on the grass. If the livor mortis shows an even area across her back as opposed to more on her left side then it could not have been due to her being on the grass for all of those hours after Adam "cut her down".


09-26-2011, 07:31 PM
Leaves a lot to be desired as far as answers go:

..this is how sgt. nemeth explains the rope at the press conference..

---approx. 36:40---press conference september 2/2011-

---------seriously, the "suicide weapon" and it's "possible" that's where it came from?

09-26-2011, 07:33 PM

One of the things that convinces me that this was a murder and not suicide is that people who try the FIRST time to commit suicide don't anticipate--given their state of mind--that they will try to fight death when it comes. So such a person would not think to tie themselves up or gag themselves. That sort of planning comes from previous unsuccessful suicide attempts. Specifically, the self-gagging would come from a previous attempt in which she had disabled herself physically from resisting, but then called out and was saved. So there would have been a witness to that event. And the self-restraint used in that attempt would have been used because of an even earlier attempt in which she freed herself before dying. So IMO a "suicide" like this one would be at least a third attempt--and there is no info whatsoever about RZ ever previously attempting suicide or even being mentally inclined toward such a thing.

09-26-2011, 07:35 PM
Bears repeating:

Not sure if posted. Here's a new Forbes Business magazine news article on the Coronado case:


9/25/2011 @ 12:45PM
Money, Mystery, Murder(?) in Spreckels Mansion Case

By Victoria Pynchon

“A woman screams for help at 11:30 p.m. in a 27-room historic mansion in Coronado, California; a 6-year-old child, Max Shacknai, has fallen two days earlier and is in critical condition; the millionaire boyfriend and father of the child, Jonah Shacknai, and his girlfriend, Rebecca Zahau, have been consumed by the boy’s care and condition in the hospital.”

So writes litigator and legal analyst Anne Bremner in her post More Questions than Answers – Justice Requires that Rebecca Zahau Case Be Reopened over at guest contributor Cathy Scott’s true crime home Women in Crime, Ink.

We’ve reported on the Zahau case ourselves here and here. My own last post noted that the San Diego Sheriff’s office agreed to re-open the case if they had any new leads. If you read Bremner’s article, there appear to be new leads aplenty. Yet the Zahau family’s continued calls for the investigation to recommence appear to be falling on deaf ears.

Why We Follow Money, Murder and Possible Corruption

She Negotiates is a deal-making blog for women hosted by the women’s business page of a mainstream financial magazine, Forbes.com. So why would we cover the purported suicide (and possible murder) of the live-in girlfriend of a pharmaceutical company CEO?

And why does the family persist in its belief that Rebecca Zahau met with foul play even though the state attorney general just last week declined Jonah Shacknai’s request to review San Diego County law enforcement findings about the deaths of his girlfriend and his 6-year-old son?

Why We Write

Whether Rebecca Zahau committed suicide or is the victim of foul play is less a concern for us than the possibility of corruption in the justice system. I don’t mean to sound callous. Of course a young women’s suicide or murder is tragic and heartbreaking. But that’s not why we write.

Guest contributor Cathy Scott writes because murder is her true crime gig. I write about the possible corruption of the justice system because the act of negotiation is the act of a free people and the principled basis for a free and vital economy.

Our freedom to contract is as important as our freedom of speech, assembly and religion. Every time we negotiate an agreement, we place our trust in the legal system to enforce that agreement if our bargaining partner turns out to be a snake oil salesman or is simply incapable of doing what she promised she would do in exchange for the promises we’ve made to her.

If we can’t trust the justice system to be . . . just . . . then we burden our economic energy with self-enforcement a la the Sopranos. And you know how ugly – not to mention time-consuming – that can be.

Criminal vs. Civil Justice

The line between the criminal and civil justice systems is not a bright and obvious one as the prosecution of civil cases following high profile criminal exonerations have proven. Think O.J. criminal (not guilty) vs. O.J. civil (“guilty”). A failure of the criminal justice system imperils the civil justice system as well because it diminishes the trust people and business place in its equitable functioning.

And those people currently occupying Wall Street aren’t feeling the love of either the economy or the justice system right now. Faith in both systems is a necessary pre-condition to an orderly society that also values free expression and the fair distribution of resources.

I do not write about the Zahau family’s request for the criminal investigation to be reopened because I have an opinion about suicide vs. murder or some other type of wrongdoing. I write about it because questions have been raised and remain unanswered. Because the law should not, cannot distinguish between the investigation of a suspicious death from the balcony of a millionaire’s mansion and one from the fire-escape of a housing project. It should not, cannot distinguish between a suspect who is the CEO of a Fortune 500 company and one who is a barista at Starbucks.

Why It’s Personal

I also write because Mr. Shacknai’s PR firm – Sitrick and Company - took the trouble to view my profile on LinkedIn after I posted Cathy Scott’s first article on the Zahau death. I didn’t like that, particularly because they weren’t simply looking for contact information, not having bothered to contact me.

It felt creepy. I don’t expect anything like it to ever happen again.

Anne Bremner, the attorney whose reporting we quote here, represents Rebecca Zahua’s family as they press authorities for a more thorough investigation into Rebecca’s death. Click here if you wish to donate to the Rebecca Zahau Fund.

About the Author - http://blogs.forbes.com/people/victoriapynchon/

09-26-2011, 07:36 PM
Agreed!! Can it be posted here?

Interesting comment on the below site that I posted yesterday. Written by writeaboutit. A MUST READ.


09-26-2011, 07:37 PM
The only witness to be given a polygraph, AS, didn't pass a polygraph-instead polygraph results were inconclusive. But instead of being given a second polygraph, the examiner felt AS was "truthful" even though no conclusions could be made based on actual charts.

09-26-2011, 07:39 PM
Yeppers!!! Brilliant!!

At the very least, it's apparent that LE was investigating MS's accident as a possible child abuse case/homicide, based on the probable cause hearing of July 15, 2011 for search warrant (#41920).

Page 6, line 21, DDA Cano asked Det. Adkins:

Detective, what training and experience do you have regarding the investigation of child abuse?

Det. Adkins goes on to list his pertinent experience.

Reading down further, page 8 of the probable cause hearing, beginning @ line 19:

At approximately 648 in the morning, Coronado Police Department received a radio call of a female who had hung herself at the above listed address.

Based on Det. Adkins testimony in court, it does seem as if consensus had already been reached with regards to suicide (but I will add that Det. Adkins is with the Coronado PD & may have been out of the loop of RZ's death investigation).

Here's the part I find most interesting - on page 11, Det. Adkins conveys his reasons for wanting to seal the search warrant, one of the reasons being (lines 19-21):

We do not wish to divulge the information contained within these documents for fear that the perpetrators can destroy evidence.

This search warrant was applied for & granted on July 15, 2011. RZ died two days prior on July 13.

My question: Since Det. Adkins was clearly investigating MS's death as a possible child abuse/homicide case, and RZ had died 2 days prior, who is the possible perpetrator(s) that he feared might destroy evidence?

Certainly not RZ. She was deceased, so it was obviously impossible for her to destroy evidence if the search warrants were made public.

ETA: Gosh - after reading my post, I'm not sure if it even belongs in this thread. I apologize for the off-topic, but I was responding to an earlier post. Perhaps I should move it to another thread.

ETA II: If the medical personnel & LE had relayed their suspicions regarding possible child abuse/homicide to MS's parents, and these suspicions were relayed to other family members - in my mind, that may provide motive for RZ's death, if RZ was murdered. There - now I'm on topic.

But I would still like to know who Det. Adkins was referring to when he testified that he feared the perpetrators might destroy evidence.

09-26-2011, 07:42 PM
This is far from a complete list and again, many posters have expressed similar or the same sentiments.

Please post any other statements, articles, and/or information pertinent.

Again, if any of you are offended by my re posting of your ideas/links/posts, please let me know and I or if it is too late, I will remove or have a moderator remove the post.

Mrs. Holmes
09-26-2011, 07:43 PM
With regards to the total length of rope. Do the cut areas match up on the ends? Specifically the portion that hung over the balcony where AS cut her down?

09-26-2011, 07:48 PM
With regards to JS whereabouts during the time period of question- I don't believe the sheriff ever said he has RMDH videos, considering the search warrant doesn't even requests them-only the hospital videos.
Yet to radar online it was reported both JS and DS were accounted for beyond the shadow of the doubt. While DS reportedly was in the hospital during the time period of question, JS was not. He was at RMDH. But to the best of my knowledge, search warrant does not request any information from RMDH. So how were JS whereabouts for the time period in question verified "beyond a shadow of a doubt?"

09-26-2011, 07:53 PM
With regards to the total length of rope. Do the cut areas match up on the ends? Specifically the portion that hung over the balcony where AS cut her down?

Agreed and I apologize as I would have sworn I posted a post where you made that excellent point. I do apologize for missing it!!:waitasec: Me, after working last night :crazy:.

09-26-2011, 07:55 PM
With regards to JS whereabouts during the time period of question- I don't believe the sheriff ever said he has RMDH videos, considering the search warrant doesn't even requests them-only the hospital videos.
Yet to radar online it was reported both JS and DS were accounted for beyond the shadow of the doubt. While DS reportedly was in the hospital during the time period of question, JS was not. He was at RMDH. But to the best of my knowledge, search warrant does not request any information from RMDH. So how were JS whereabouts for the time period in question verified "beyond a shadow of a doubt?"

Thank you Jenny!!! Wonder how many other points I missed that you all posted?!:innocent:

09-26-2011, 08:06 PM
With regards to JS whereabouts during the time period of question- I don't believe the sheriff ever said he has RMDH videos, considering the search warrant doesn't even requests them-only the hospital videos.
Yet to radar online it was reported both JS and DS were accounted for beyond the shadow of the doubt. While DS reportedly was in the hospital during the time period of question, JS was not. He was at RMDH. But to the best of my knowledge, search warrant does not request any information from RMDH. So how were JS whereabouts for the time period in question verified "beyond a shadow of a doubt?"

Well, Jonah told them he was at RMDH, so - according to the logic that Jonah telling them what was in the final voice mail was sufficiently evidentiary - I guess that also is "beyond a shadow of a doubt. The only thing "ironclad" about this case is LE's determination not to re-open this thing.

09-26-2011, 08:23 PM
Yes, since SDSD believed everybody they interviewed was truthful, then maybe whatever the witnesses said was considered proof enough. Considering the witness with inconclusive polygraph results was felt to be truthful and apparently was not asked to take the polygraph again-that would not be surprising.

09-27-2011, 12:23 AM
To go along with your post, we know that LE stated Dina and Jonah were at Max's bedside the entire night. We know now, that this is not true. Jonah stayed at a motel one night, as well as the fact that his location is unknown from approx. 1 am to 7 am the night Rebecca died.

This is a crucial discrepancy and a glaring example of the the investigation in general.

09-27-2011, 12:53 AM
Here I go again!! Cynic, as usual you show us the proof!! This needs to be here!

There are only 3 areas on the railing that are truly wiped clean as evidenced by a shiny black surface in each instance.


An approximately 3” area – from 18.25 to 21.25 inches on the “ruler.”
An approximately 1.25” area - from 27 to 28.25 inches on the “ruler.”
An approximately 1/2” area – from 32 to 32.5 inches on the “ruler.”

There is no area on the railing sufficiently wiped clean that would correspond with RN leaning over, and subsequently falling over, as law enforcement would have us believe.

I believe the 3” area might be explained by someone placing their hand on the railing.
Hand breadth:
In males, the right hand breadth varied from 7.30cm (2.87in) to 9.40cm (3.70in) (mean 8.45cm (3.33in) & SD 0.40)

and left hand breadth varied from 7.20cm (2.83in) to 9.40cm (3.70in) (mean 8.42cm (3.31in) & SD 0.40).

In females, the right hand breadth varied from 6.70cm (2.64in) to 8.80cm (3.46in) (mean 7.48cm (2.94in) & SD 0.38)

and left hand breadth varied from 6.60cm (2.60in) to 8.70cm (3.43in) (mean 7.42cm (2.92in) & SD 0.37).

The other two areas relate to the rope, as red fiber evidence is apparent on the outside edge of the railing.


09-27-2011, 12:55 AM
And your other post!

Here is another look at the railing:

09-27-2011, 12:57 AM
And this. Police incompetence, or something else altogether?

..val @ the hinky has also noted a possible 2 more footprints.

Valhall: "There are two more that I have identified. One very clear, the other questionable".

------original picture---

------outline of new footprints marked---

Carpe Pacem
09-27-2011, 12:58 AM
SunnieRN, I envy your organized mind!

Thank you for this compilation.

Good work!

09-27-2011, 01:20 AM
Hey guys I just wanted to share this awesome detailed description of why Adam would not have needed a wooden table to cut Rebecca down.. Have to give props to an awesome commentor on Coronado Patch.. Take a look:

Thanks Smooth Operator!!

Curious Me
09-27-2011, 01:40 AM
SmoothOperator, thank you for helping me understand that Adam didn't need to stand on the table. :thud:
Cynic had already blown my mind with the balcony facts. It's so good to see such sharp, intelligent minds working on this case that LE should admit they botched.

09-27-2011, 01:01 PM
SmoothOperator, thank you for helping me understand that Adam didn't need to stand on the table. :thud:
Cynic had already blown my mind with the balcony facts. It's so good to see such sharp, intelligent minds working on this case that LE should admit they botched.

Agreed!! If anyone finds any other posts appropriate to be placed here, please move them, as this is an ongoing record of events.

09-27-2011, 01:11 PM
Would you please be so kind as to repost your excellent post with pictures here? Thank you!!!
Certainly fits the rigor patterns, does it not?

This is my hypothesis:
I believe Rebecca was murdered. I believe that the missing 10' of rope came from the other end of the 7' section trailing from her wrist bindings and was threaded through the tow rope handle woven into her foot bindings. I believe that rope was tied to the leg of the headboard of the bed and her neck ligature was tied to the footboard leg. I believe she was bound into a teardrop hogtie, much like this:


Reference photo #5,warning - graphic:

This accounts for her bent legs, the fact that there was a trailing 7' section of rope from her wrists but not her feet, why the tow rope handle was woven into the foot bindings, the missing 10' of rope, the second line of missing dirt on the railing from a rope, the way the bed is pulled away from the wall (if the rope were only on the footboard, the bed should have continued to travel across the room being pulled from the reported 600#'s of weight, it didn't. It was being pulled at an angle and the headboard ran into the wall, stopping the bed from moving further; different traction points), and the need for the gag. I also believe the gag was used to hold her head upright and pulled back, resulting in the hemorrhages to the SCM muscles.

Remember the discussion about TWO marks for the rope on the railing? And the missing 10' of rope?

For reference:

AR states that the knots on the neck and the one on her wrist were slip knots, so tossing her over like this would result in the tightening of both knots. The AR also stated that the rope exited through her fingers, as if she was holding the rope and some of her fingers were bloody with torn skin.


Page 8

There is an 84 inch segment of rope extending from a slip knot on the left wrist. This 84 inch segment pulls through the slip knot. This segment extends from the left wrist into the right hand and exits between the right index and middle fingers.

Page 11

On the posterior aspect of the radial right hand, there are four red abrasions ranging from punctate to 1/16 inch in diameter. On the medial aspect of the right third finger (the surface between the third and forth finger), over the distal portion of the middle phalanx, there is a 1/2 x 5/16 inch abrasion with skin tags on the palmar edge. On the medial right elbow there is a 1/8 inch, faint, pale red abrasion.

On the posterior mid left forearm there is a 1/8 inch red abrasion. On the posterior aspect of the middle phalanx of the left 3rd finger there is a horizontally oriented, 1/8 inch, linear abrasion.

Page 7

On the medial aspects of the base of the great toes there is dried and smeared blood. On the medial left great toe there is what appears to be a dried spot of blood with subsequent smear. There is a small amount of blood on the plantar aspect of the left great toe as well as on the platar aspect of the sole over the base of the right great toe. On the medial aspect of the left foot just anterior to the left medial malleolus there is a small amount of dried blood.

There is a small amount of dried blood on the posterior right 3rd finger and on the posterolateral aspect of the mid right 4th finger and distal right 4th finger.

Once she was tossed over, the ropes continued to get tighter, and the unnatural position she was in, combined with the tension on the rope rubbed the skin off her fingers and caused them to bleed, probably dripping onto her toes or she may have been able to touch her toes. If she had only tied her hands behind her back to keep her from grabbing the noose, she wouldn't have those bloody abrasions on her fingers.

Cynic, would you agree that the 1/2" mark was from the rope and there was significant tension on that rope?

There’s not much doubt in my mind on both counts.

says that if the body is moved before livor is set, at 8 to 12 hours after death, the pattern can be changed without seeing the original pattern. The blood becomes completely fluid after death and settles to the lowest points in the body. It cannot clot any longer, so moving it before that certain time can result in the blood simply relocating to the new location. My understanding is that while livor mortis is useful, it cannot be absolutely depended upon for position at time of death. Rigor depends upon muscle mass, activity before death and temperature and can be quicker onset and duration if the death was especially active or violent due to the muscle activity before death.

The fact that she had livor red and fixed in her back after laying on the grass for 12 hours means little to nothing in my very humble opinion.

09-27-2011, 01:18 PM
Thank you so much IWannaKnow!!!!! I love that you added the text to your picture also! Brilliant and thank you again, so much!!!:great:

09-27-2011, 01:47 PM
Another brilliant Cynic post and this is also in my signature. Cynic you rock!!!

Here is an animation that I did based on the police theory of the case:

RZN-vid - YouTube (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FVbzGlEQSPs)

A few notes regarding the pictures that were used in the animation:
I resized a female to be 5 feet, 3 and a half inches using an assumption that the railing is 36” high.
The final hanging location is also based on the above assumption.
She is depicted as standing on the outside of the railing; she, of course, was on the inside.
She is depicted as bent over backwards because I wanted to show where the face would be.




9’ Mark:

Final location 9’2”

Where are the injuries?

The autopsy report says the following with respect to the head and torso of RN

On the central forehead there is a 1 x 1-3/4 inch group of three vertically oriented parallel, thin, linear abrasions measuring from inferior to superior, ½ inch, 5/8 inch, and 5/8 inch (discontinuous) respectively. The most inferior one is within ¼ inch of the medial edge of the left eyebrow. On the right upper forehead, just past the hairline, there is a ¼ red abrasion.


So, given that her face would have be scraping over nearly 1 1/2 feet of railing, where is the injury to her nose???
More importantly, with her torso going over 2 feet of railing, why is there not a single abrasion or injury of any kind???

09-27-2011, 01:55 PM
Excellent thread, Sunnie!

I have concerns about the black gloves and black latex glove listed in the search warrant. What were the results of testing on these items?

09-27-2011, 02:19 PM
Thanks Smooth Operator!!

I believe the original graphic was done by joe2 at CP. Just to give credit to their awesome work! :great:

09-27-2011, 02:28 PM
I believe the original graphic was done by joe2 at CP. Just to give credit to their awesome work! :great:

Thank you so much Deanna!!! I really appreciate that a lot!!

09-27-2011, 03:36 PM
Just out of curiosity I've been working on a timeline of phone calls and text messages of some of the persons on RZ's cell phone records. Here's what I've come up with. If anyone finds errors, please correct in your post. It was a tedious effort! I'm pretty much cross-eyed now. Thanks so much to tvscum for the phone number keys.

RZ Cell Phone Activity
7/11/2011 & 7/12/2011

AS - 901-485-xxxx
July 11
5:11PM - Incoming 5M
9:52PM - Outgoing 2M
10:57PM - Outgoing 4M

July 12
9:42AM - Incoming 4M
3:57PM - Outgoing 2M
4:17PM - Outgoing 1M
7:39PM - Incoming 1M

July 11

July 12

NR - 209-814-xxxx
July 11
10:02PM - outgoing 2M

July 12

JS - 602-502-xxxx
July 11
10:24AM - outgoing 1M
10:54AM - outgoing 1M
9:37PM - outgoing 2M
10:04PM - outgoing 1M

July 12
4:50PM - outgoing 1M
7:34PM - outgoing 1M

July 11
3:28PM - TEXT MESSAGE Out ??
4:01PM - TEXT MESSAGE Out ??

July 12

Dr HL - 602-614-xxxx
July 11
3:51PM - Incoming 4M (602-494)
9:30PM - Outgoing 2M (602-614)
10:00PM - Outgoing 1M (602-614)

July 12
8:31AM - Incoming 3M (602-614)
9:55AM - Outgoing 1M (602-614)

July 11
8:17PM - TEXT MESSAGE Out (All TM from 602-614)

July 12

09-27-2011, 03:47 PM
Thank you SO much Deanna!!! I feel these records will be VERY important to have in the future. I thank you for your hard, eye crossing work and for posting this here!!!!!:great:

09-27-2011, 05:35 PM

In Out In Out In Out In Out In Out In Out In Out In Out In Out In Out In Out In Out
That's not hinky, that's kinky! (okay just kidding thank you very much for all your work. My apologies for my tacky humor. :)

09-27-2011, 05:57 PM
Just wanted to point out that I did infact give credit where credit was due as is evident In my post sharing the Adam detailed diagram.. I made certain to give props to a commentor on Coronado Patch for the magnificent and help diagram!! Just wanted to make sure that was clear..

09-27-2011, 05:59 PM
...floor plan blueprints show the bizarre route rebecca would have had to have taken around the mansion/garage....doesn't add up.

Rebecca Zahau case: Floorplans and yet more issues.

10-01-2011, 02:27 PM
New hinky meter article today:


Now, there are six loops around the left wrist so the “middle” would be the 3rd or 4th loop around the left wrist. Why (or better yet “how” ) would she get black paint on the 3rd or 4th wrap around her left wrist and not get it on the first, second, or maybe third? And if you go back and watch Ms. LE Bind-myself’s demonstration, how did she bind her wrists at all without brushing her right hand against her left hand and getting paint on it?

And how the heck did she not get any paint on the ankle bindings or the blue t-shirt? Are we to believe that she bound her wrists first, removed her right hand, somehow managed to keep the cleat hitch binding from getting all gimped up while she then bound her ankles virtually one-handed? I mean at some point you have to give the explanation that either the excess paint had already been wiped off on other items, or it had begun to dry and therefore didn’t transfer to the ankle bindings.

OR, are we to believe she bound her ankles first, THEN PAINTED THE DOOR (nude and ankle bound), and then bound her wrists? Wouldn’t she have to wrap the blue t-shirt around her neck first before binding her wrists, so wouldn’t the blue t-shirt have a MUCH larger probability of having black paint on it? It has more surface area and is more absorbent than the rope, right? And how did she put the ligature around her neck and not get any paint on it, but end up getting it on the “knot tail”?

Could it be that the paint on the knot tail was transferred to the tail when it brushed against Rebecca’s right hand after she was bound? It’s definitely long enough to reach her hands behind her back and especially when the ligature has been placed loosely around her neck and before she goes over the railing to draw it tight.

And why are there black-paint fingerprint smudges all over the trash bag but SDSO never said anything about the fingerprints found on the bag?

10-01-2011, 07:25 PM
Another reason to reopen the ivestigation is because even Harry Houdini didn't tie himself up with rope... he only escaped :D

Houdini Rope Escape - YouTube

Now, Rebecca is great, but she is no Houdini, she could not escape the ropes someone tied her in.

10-01-2011, 07:32 PM
OK, serious now, I just looked at the photos of Rebecca falling (above) - why didn't her body slam into the side of the house a couple times??

sorrell skye
10-01-2011, 10:26 PM
Bringing this over from the "What One Thing?!?!" thread, per SunnieRN's request:

So here's my list. It's not necessarily an exhaustive list of the reasons (although it may be exhausting reading it :crazy: ) why I doubt the official suicide finding, but it includes the reasons I've currently compiled.

1. This is my #1 reason: the impossible geometry of the fall, based on Valhalls' excellent mathematical analysis.


2. The 4 subgaleal hemorrhages (especially the one on the right superior parietal scalp - the top of her head), indicative of blunt force trauma.

3. The lack of significant facial & torso injuries, based on Cynic's brilliant computer animation.

Websleuths Crime Sleuthing Community - View Single Post - The case for murder (http://websleuths.com/forums/showpost.php?p=7115100&postcount=1)

4. Again, the lack of significant injuries to RZ's torso, since it's been assumed that she leaned over the railing & pushed off from her toes (all while defying the impossible geometry, no less). The AR (page 13) notes 3 small, superficial abrasions to the lower abdomen.

https://docs.google.com/viewer?a=v&pid=explorer&chrome=true&srcid=0B54MtfXlxRJbYjA3YzY2MTItOWM1Mi00NGE4LWEyZDg tMjc3OWUxZTYzYmY5&hl=en

Based on a close-up photo of the balcony railing, even if RZ had been able to defy the impossible geometry of the fall (which I seriously doubt) she should have sustained numerous, deep lacerations to her torso as she slid over the rough, jagged areas of the railing.


5. The lack of livor mortis in the extremities after hanging for ~ 4 hours.

6. The fixed posterior livor mortis, after lying semi-supine tilted to the left side for 12+ hours. The lack of fixed livor mortis to the left side, also after lying tilted to that side for 12+ hours.

7. The 2 hour time frame (after having allegedly listened to a vm message @ ~ 12:50; not to mention phone records show no evidence of an incoming call @ ~ 12:30 that resulted in the vm message that was allegedly listened to @ ~ 12:50) to make the ultimate decision to commit suicide (absent any previous mental health history or known suicidal ideation), to devise a workable suicide plan, and to assemble the instruments associated with a workable suicide plan (rope, kitchen knives, paint supplies), and to carry out that plan, including figuring out how to successfully tie the bindings to ankles, wrists, bedframe, and to fashion an effective noose.

8. The exact length of the noose rope: without apparent measuring (as is evident in the dearth of footprints on the balcony tiles) to ensure it would not be too long or too short from where it was tied off to the bedframe & coursed all the way across the room, across the balcony floor, & over the railing - how did she know the noose rope would not be too long or too short?

9. The obvious contamination of the crime scene: Exhibit A) the boot print on the balcony tiles. IMO, if the balcony tiles were tromped upon, it's possible that the rest of the primary crime scene (if not also the secondary crime scene i.e. the rest of the mansion, the garage, etc.) may have also been compromised, with the possibility that potential evidence may have been lost.

10. No fingernail scrapings, or clipped & preserved fingernails were noted in the AR. Without collection of these items, and without testing for possible foreign DNA, there is no way to conclusively determine that RZ had not fought against an attacker.

11. The blue tee shirt wrapped around the victim's neck - on the outside of the rope - and stuffed into her mouth.

12. The music that was reported to have been heard by neighbors @ ~ 1:00 - 1:30 a.m. on the night of her demise.

13. The telephone conversations with the decedent's sister (during which the decedent was reported to have not seemed despondent or suicidal) on the night of her demise.

14. The decision by SDCSD to not attempt to create a re-enactment of the hanging.

15. The sticky tape residue on RZ's shins: if it was athletic tape - where is the rest of the roll? If it was duct tape - where is the rest of the roll? Did she put the tape on her legs, or did someone else?

16. The noose was wrapped over her hair. As someone who has had long hair my entire life, I know from experience that a woman with long hair will automatically (without thinking about it) pull her hair out from under anything restrictive (purse strap, backpack strap, collar, scarf, necklace, etc.). IMO, if someone else had wrapped the noose around RZ's neck, that person would not have removed her long hair from beneath the rope.

17. The curious lack of anyone else's DNA or fingerprints anywhere in the immediate crime scene (including the lack of anyone else's fingerprints or DNA besides RZ's on the kitchen knives, which are typically tools that are handled by all the adults in a household).

18. Lack of official information regarding other rooms or surfaces in the mansion (including the garage) or adjoining guesthouses that were processed for possible evidence.

19. The message on the door: RZ has been described as someone who cared about others; someone who was always there for her family & friends. Psychologically speaking, it's my opinion that a person who is sensitive to the feelings & needs of others (as she was said to have been) would have more than likely written a detailed suicide letter so that her loved ones could have understood the reason for suicide & to hopefully provide them with a sense of closure. The message on the door did not accomplish that, IMO, but only created more questions, more doubt, and certainly did not provide closure. IMO, the message on the door seems to have been written by a third party who was attempting to taunt JS.

20. The blood on RZ's fingers (page 10, AR): unless the blood was collected & tested, there is no way to determine if it was her own blood, or someone else's.

https://docs.google.com/viewer?a=v&pid=explorer&chrome=true&srcid=0B54MtfXlxRJbYjA3YzY2MTItOWM1Mi00NGE4LWEyZDg tMjc3OWUxZTYzYmY5&hl=en

21. The victim was found nude. Yet, she had not removed a black "Bionic Band" and a yellow "Livestrong" band from her left wrist, nor did she remove a "Power Balance" band from her right wrist (page 8, AR).

https://docs.google.com/viewer?a=v&pid=explorer&chrome=true&srcid=0B54MtfXlxRJbYjA3YzY2MTItOWM1Mi00NGE4LWEyZDg tMjc3OWUxZTYzYmY5&hl=en

Her ears were pierced, but she wasn't wearing earrings @ the time of her death. Nor was she wearing any other jewelry. If she planned to kill herself, and had removed all other clothing & jewelry, why did she not remove the "Bionic Band", the "Livestrong" band, and the "Power Balance" band?

The list (of why the *official* suicide finding strains credulity, and why, IMO, an independent investigation is warranted) grows ever longer.

Picking up where I left off:

22. The additional shoe print on the balcony tiles, discovered by Dr. Maurice Godwin when he viewed the photos of the balcony floor: this shoe print can be seen beneath the boot print of the LE officer who admittedly contaminated the crime scene.

Image of the additional shoe print:



23. The measurement of the area of "disturbed dust" on the balcony railing: SDCSD reported this area to be 11" wide, when it was actually 9" wide (2 whole inches off) TY Cynic! Closer analysis by Cynic revealed that even this 9" area of "disturbed dust" was not continuous, but was, in fact, only about 3" at its widest point (which incidentally corresponds to the width of someone's hand) as well as two other more narrow areas (about 1.25" and .50") that seem to correspond with where the red rope strained against the railing during the hanging (as evidenced by the red rope fibers).

Please see Cynic's marvelous illustration:

Websleuths Crime Sleuthing Community - View Single Post - The footprints/shoeprints on the balcony (http://websleuths.com/forums/showpost.php?p=7157773&postcount=30)

24. The 10:41 p.m. text message on July 12 from NR to RZ, to which RZ did not reply. The sender of the message claims she sent the text earlier in the evening. To date, cell phone records have not corroborated this claim.

25. The scream(s) reportedly heard coming from the mansion by a neighbor(s) @ approximately 11:30 p.m. on Tuesday, July 12, just prior to RZ's death.

26. The lack of proof by SDCSD as to the whereabouts of JS @ the time of RZ's death. SDCSD stated they verified the whereabouts of JS via video surveillance tapes from Rady's Children's Hospital. However, it was revealed post press conference that JS had, in fact, left the hospital to allegedly sleep @ the RMcD House across the street from the hospital between the hours of 1:00 a.m. - 7:00 a.m. on July 13 (the night/morning of RZ's death). Search warrants show that SDCSD did not request video surveillance tapes from the RMcD House, but only from the hospital.

27. The additional shoe print in the crime scene bedroom, which is noted to be in EXTREMELY close proximity to the iron bed & other crime scene evidence (AFTER the bed moved 7.5" from the wall, which, IMO, rules out the possibility that the shoe print can be attributed to the CSIs, since the bed more than likely moved 7.5" during the hanging & before the CSI team arrived on the scene).

To quote Dr. Maurice Godwin:

"The toe is actually underneath the foot of the bed," Dr. Godwin told RadarOnline.com about the shoe print in the photo given to RadarOnline.com that was part of the police evidence. "This could suggest that it is likely not from the police."



As always, this is a group effort. Thank You to Everyone for your input!

It is my hope that a new investigation into the manner of RZ's death will be opened (hopefully, by an independent law enforcement agency).

10-01-2011, 11:17 PM
Thank you SO much Sorrell!!! This is a useful and thorough accounting and I love knowing it is here, as with so many threads, I am having trouble finding important posts!!!! Thanks again!!!:woohoo::great::seeya:

10-01-2011, 11:30 PM
Thanks, SunnieRN. That's a lot of work and a great job. Also thanks to the other posters.
Can I mention the 'clumps' of hair mentioned in the search warrants? Who's were they? Where were they found? Does the hair also have roots? Were these pulled hairs?
And lastly, why would there be clumps of hair lying around anyway?

That's another reason to me.

10-02-2011, 08:45 PM



Why did they have it painted over?

10-02-2011, 08:46 PM

Another signature from letter to the AG.

10-02-2011, 08:51 PM
Deanna, thank you so very, very much!!! If the writing on the door is ever released, this may be very important!!:great:

10-02-2011, 11:11 PM

Another signature from letter to the AG.

Those two signatures appear to have nothing in common, even though they come from the same person. I find that very interesting.

10-03-2011, 12:54 AM
Thank you jjenny!!:seeya: Much appreciated!!:great:

10-03-2011, 09:52 PM
What is this and why isn't it listed on the SW?

It's definitely not the bedroom door, but it's also not listed on the SW inventory.


10-03-2011, 11:26 PM
Originally Posted by sorrell skye
*respectfully snipped*

When this case was first being investigated, RZ's death was reported as "violent" and "suspicious" (these were SDSO's words). In the early days, SDSO stated they weren't ruling out a possible homicide.

IMO, that was enough reason to investigate every room of the house, including testing for fingerprint and/or DNA evidence.

10-03-2011, 11:41 PM
Why did AS drag a table (which appears light enought to lift) to cut down a person who was hanging within reach? And how did he get into the main house so quickly?

10-03-2011, 11:52 PM
What is this and why isn't it listed on the SW?

It's definitely not the bedroom door, but it's also not listed on the SW inventory.

Peaceful, we've been discussing this on the "the message on the door thread"; see my post #190, about halfway down the last page:


At this point, we don't know what that item is, but we've found an interesting "maybe", IMO.

10-04-2011, 02:33 AM
A larger version of how it might appear on a door?


10-08-2011, 09:16 PM
This may be the same item, but different angle in Peaceful's #61 post, but note there is another item behind the gentleman that's wrapped in paper as well. What is it? Was it listed on SW?


10-09-2011, 05:54 PM
Good article, that states the number of experts questioning the 'evidence' and ruling of suicide. Please note in comments, the links to petitions to tropen Rebeccas case and sign if you feel it is important.


Mrs. Holmes
10-24-2011, 04:55 PM
Who turned out the light? Note in this police photo the overhead is off. Did RZ do this in the dark, did she hop back and turn out the light with her nose? Were there side lamps? No glow shows in this photo of a light being left on at the bedside.

Mrs. Holmes
10-29-2011, 09:14 AM
The ME made a big deal about the wrist bindings being very loose becasue his theory is she created the knots and then slipped her wrist out and moved her hands behind her back. The ME seemed completely UNAWARE that AS was apparently told to untie or loosen her hands so he could get her flat on her back to give CPR. There is a visible long piece of rope in the photos, we don't know if RZ was hog tied, we don't know how tight the original bindings on her hands were. The ME has no real idea of how tight the bindings originally were.

Curious Me
10-30-2011, 02:30 PM
Sometimes cases are closed and forgotten in San Diego for a long time. Here's an example.

Marilane Abueg 1995

10-30-2011, 06:53 PM
Sometimes cases are closed and forgotten in San Diego for a long time. Here's an example.

Marilane Abueg 1995

That's very sad and disgraceful as well.

Curious Me
10-30-2011, 08:05 PM
That's very sad and disgraceful as well.


Fundamental failures led to murder case dismissal

"Nesbit, who became the sheriff’s homicide unit lieutenant this year, said the errors that plagued the case could not happen now. There is a better tracking system, regular meetings among teams and other steps."

“Sadly, there were some things overlooked in that case, but we don’t believe that could be repeated right now with the procedures in place,” he said."


10-31-2011, 01:16 AM
After turning out the light, as Mrs. Holmes suggests, how did RZ return the rest of the tape to its storage place somewhere else in the house? If she used the entire roll, where is the internal cardboard that tape rolls usually have?

Mrs. Holmes
09-05-2012, 09:05 AM
I just reviewed this entire thread. For anyone curious about this case it is a must read. The information pushes you overwhelmingly to believe RZ was murdered.

I belioeve all of this information was given to AB's team so it could be compiled in her request to the AG.

Excellent work websleuths.

07-31-2013, 02:06 AM
OK, serious now, I just looked at the photos of Rebecca falling (above) - why didn't her body slam into the side of the house a couple times??

Why do you assume that she didn't slam into the wall? I see what appear to be black paint smudges clearly visible on the wall at about the right height in the sense that's where hand's would've been more or less as she swung like a pendulum. Thank you.