Attorney: Couple Held in Bali Death Under Suicide Watch

Heather Lois Mack and her boyfriend, Tommy Schaefer, are accused of killing Sheila von Wiese-Mack and stuffing body in a suitcase

An attorney on Wednesday said an American couple arrested on suspicion of murdering the woman's mother on Indonesia's tourist island of Bali were being held under a suicide watch.

An Indonesian lawyer assigned by Bali police, Haposan Sihombing, said Heather Mack and her boyfriend, Tommy Schaefer, were still refusing to talk to investigators.

The body of Mack's 62-year-old mother, Sheila von Wiese-Mack, was found last week inside a suitcase in the trunk of a taxi in front of an upscale Bali hotel. The couple was arrested the following day.

Haposan said Mack, 18, was being detained at the Denpasar police station and Schaefer, 21, was being held separately at the provincial police headquarters.

An autopsy found Wiese-Mack died of asphyxiation after her nose was broken by a blunt blow. Her body was flown back to Chicago on Tuesday.

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Police last week announced the pair were "charged" with murder but later said that wasn't the case. Under Indonesia’s civil law tradition, suspects are only charged during their first appearance in court. Mack and Schaefer remain in custody as the investigation continues but haven't yet appeared in front of a judge. If found guilty of premeditated murder, both could be sentenced to death by firing squad under Article 340 of Indonesia's Criminal Code.

Previous reports put Lois Mack's age at 19. Her Chicago attorney, Michael Elkin, on Monday said she won't be 19 for a few more months.

Elkin also on Monday said his client is two months pregnant and alleges she's been sexually assaulted and given unknown pills while in custody.

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Authorities in the upscale Chicago suburb of Oak Park said records showed 86 incidents in which police were called to the family's house in Oak Park where von Wiese-Mack lived with her daughter. Friends and neighbors said the mother-daughter relationship was sometimes contentious.

Von Wiese-Mack was the widow of highly regarded jazz and classical composer James L. Mack of Oak Park, Illinois, who died in 2006 at age 76.

In 2012, von Wiese-Mack joined a century-old Chicago book club called the Caxton Club. She had varied interests including Asian literature and Wagnerian opera, according to a May 2013 profile of her in the club's publication Caxtonian.

A published report said von Wiese-Mack collected more than $800,000 through a 2011 settlement with Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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