Mom wants child's mansion death reopened

Aug. 8, 2012 at 12:08 PM

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz., Aug. 8 (UPI) -- The mother of a 6-year-old boy whose death in a historic California mansion was ruled an accident has asked authorities to reopen the case, an attorney says.

The Arizona law firm representing Dina Shacknai said their client has obtained evidence gathered by two independent experts indicating the death of Max Shacknai was a homicide.

Shacknai presented that evidence to the Coronado Police Department at a meeting that included representatives from the San Diego Medical Examiner's office, the law firm said.

Six-year-old Max Shacknai died July 16, 2011, from injuries he suffered in a fall at his father's beachfront mansion in Coronado.

Experts in forensic pathology and injury biomechanics who conducted an independent investigation said the boy had face and head injuries that suggested he was assaulted before falling.

The night he fell, Max was being looked after by his father's girlfriend, Rebecca Zahau. Two days later she was discovered hanging naked from one of the mansion's balconies with her wrists and ankles bound.

Her death has been ruled a suicide.

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