Man Denies Police Claim That He Confessed To Killing Girlfriend’s Mother, Attorney Says
A U.S. attorney for a Chicago man accused of killing his girlfriend’s mother on the Indonesian resort island of Bali said Wednesday that his client is denying a police claim that he confessed.
The police chief in Bali’s capital, Denpasar, said last week that Tommy Schaefer, 21, confessed to the killing during a police interrogation.
Chicago attorney Thomas Durkin said he spoke with Schaefer by phone and that his client told him he did not confess.
Authorities in Indonesia have accused Schaefer of killing Sheila von Wiese-Mack, whose badly beaten body was found stuffed in a suitcase inside the trunk of a taxi at the St. Regis Bali Resort in August. The victim’s 19-year-old daughter, Heather Mack, is also a suspect. Neither has been formally charged.
“Schaefer confessed to killing von Wiese-Mack during police interrogation,” police chief Col. Djoko Hari Utomo told The Associated Press on Friday. “He was hurt and offended by the victim’s words in an argument with him. That is the motive for the murder.”
Utomo also said Mack, who is three months’ pregnant, admitted in a separate interrogation she helped Schaefer stuff her mother’s body into a suitcase. Utomo said Schaefer and Mack were accompanied by their Indonesian and U.S. lawyers during the interrogations, but Durkin said he has not gone to Indonesia.
Attempts last week to reach the Indonesian lawyers were not successful. Mack’s U.S. attorney, Michael Elkin, has maintained she is innocent and released a statement Monday saying he would not comment while the investigation continues.
Attempts to reach police in Denpasar were not successful Wednesday.