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Officials downplay suspicions in diver Rebecca Weiss' death

August 19, 2012 | 10:11 am

Though family members of a 50-year-old free diver found dead Saturday off Palos Verdes Peninsula have cast suspicion about how she died, Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department detectives have been careful not to suggest any foul play in connection to the case.

Homicide detectives have been probing the case of Rebecca Weiss, who was reported missing last week by her husband, Alan Weiss. Lt. Holly Francisco of the Sheriff's Department homicide bureau described him as "very cooperative" with investigators.

"He met with detectives and provided a whole statement of his last encounter with her," Francisco said.

Asked whether investigators shared the suspicions aired by Rebecca Weiss' family in the media, Francisco replied, "No."

Coroner's investigator Elissa Fleak said an autopsy would be conducted Sunday.

Rebecca Weiss' body was discovered about 200 yards offshore in an area that investigators said was a favorite dive spot for Weiss and her husband.

Alan Weiss went to a sheriff's station Aug. 11 and told deputies that his wife of 20 years had not returned home after a planned dive in the cove. He told investigators he had found her BMW in a nearby parking lot and a bag containing her dive equipment by the shore.

Rebecca Weiss' mother and brother were near the area passing out fliers when recreational divers found the body about 11:30 a.m. Vilma Causey wept and clutched a photo of her daughter as a search-and-rescue boat pulled the body from the water.

A diver involved in the recovery of the body later came ashore and had an emotional conversation with Causey before authorities escorted her away with her son, Bob; a Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department sergeant; and Causey's daughter-in-law.

Causey told KTLA last week that her son-in-law's behavior was "strange" and "not the reaction of a person that has somebody missing that is close to you." Alan Weiss, 60, has declined to comment.