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Zahau Family Expected To File Suit Against San Diego Sheriff’s Dept.

Officials ruled Rebecca Zahau death a suicide

— The attorney for the family of Rebecca Zahau, who mysteriously died at the Spreckles Mansion in Coronado nearly two years ago, will announce Wednesday plans to keep her death investigation alive.

Photo credit: 10 News

Rebecca Zahau died July 13, 2011 at the Spreckles Mansion in Coronado. Zahau's death was a ruled a suicide but her family insists she was murdered.

10news spoke with family attorney, Marty Rudoy, who said a lawsuit against the San Diego Sheriff's Department is in the works for evidence and information they believe deputies left out during the investigation.

The evidence includes interviews, evidence from the scene of Zahau's July 13, 2011 death and a mysterious 8-second gap from a 911 call. The family believes the evidence were all intentionally left out and that they may prove Zahau was murdered.

The deaths of 6-year-old Max Shaknai and his father's then-girlfriend, Zahau, made headlines in 2011. Shaknai's death was ruled an accident and Zahau's a suicide.

But since the deaths Zahau's family has been adamant that she was murdered.

"Our experts have looked at it and there's really no evidence of suicide but there is compelling evidence of a struggle. And our expert believes there was someone else's hand in her death," said Marty Rudoy, the Zahau family lawyer.

The San Diego Sheriff's Department rejected the family's pleas to re-open the investigation saying there was no evidence of a homicide. The family disagrees.

"An overturned chair in the room from which the rope was suspended, of course Rebecca's hands being tied behind her back and her legs bound," said Rudoy. "Some duct tape on her body, there's an injury to her hand."

The family is now suing the Sheriff's department for evidence and information they say was recovered the day Zahau died, including the 911 call.

"There's an 8-second gap in the copy we have, it just goes dead for 8 seconds," said Rudoy. "And I spoke with someone who heard the original and there is no 8 second gap in the original."

Other evidence still missing, according to Rudoy, are items from the Medical Examiner's Office, including a complete videotape and notes from Zahau's autopsy.

The family will hold a press conference at 11 a.m.

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