Investigators have ruled the death of Rebecca Nalepa a suicide, who died in Jonah Shacknai’s mansion on the morning of July 13, 2011, but her family disputes the outcome of the case.
Police say that forensic evidence and interviews show that the 32-year-old took her own life. Zahau’s body was discovered in the courtyard of the mansion by Shacknai’s brother Adam. Her hands and feet were bound and a noose was around her neck tied to a second-story balcony.
It is possible that Nalepa was overwrought with guilt over the injury of Jonah Shacknai’s son Max while she was was watching him. The 6-year-old boy fell down a flight of stairs two days before her death.
However, Rebecca’s family members told reporters that they do not believe the woman committed suicide.
“We, her family and friends, do not believe it’s a suicide. There are still unanswered questions,” Nalepa’s sister, Mary Zahau-Loehner of Missouri, said in a statement.
Neil Nalepa, her ex-husband, said the woman would turn to God before taking her own life.
“I don’t believe it was a suicide at all. She would cry out to God for help if she were feeling sad,” Nalepa said.