Couple Accused of Murdering Chicago Socialite Sheila von Mack Reunite in Bali Prosecutor's Office
Police wrap up investigation into the murder case against the victim's daughter and boyfriend
It was a tearful reunion for Chicago residents Heather Mack and Tommy Schaefer, who were arrested by Bali police in August for the brutal murder of Mack’s mother – whose battered body was found stuffed in a suitcase and left in the back of a cab at a luxury resort on the island.
The couple, held in separate jails in Bali since their arrest for the killing of socialite Sheila von Weise-Mack, 62, at the five-star St. Regis Resort in Nusa Dua, met up on Dec. 7 in a holding cell at a prosecutor’s office in Denpasar and quickly began hugging one another and sobbing.
“Is that you, Heather?” Schaefer, 21, called out when he spotted his girlfriend, according to reports. “Wow, I want to see you.”
Moments later, Schaefer dropped to his knees and kissed his girlfriend’s belly. Mack, 18, is six months pregnant with his child.
Reporters crowded around the holding cell, snapping pictures of the reunion through the steel bars. “My baby is a girl,” Mack told the group, adding that she plans on naming her Stella after her grandmother. “She is fine. I want her to stay in Bali so she can visit me anytime while I’m in jail.”
Exactly how long the couple could stay locked up is unknown. Mack had a turbulent relationship with her mother, according to court documents, and if convicted of premeditated murder, she and Schaefer could face a firing squad. Police have finally completed their investigation into the murder and turned their findings over to prosecutors, who now have 20 days to formally charge the two. A trial could begin within weeks after that.
The murder on Aug. 11 allegedly occurred hours after Schaefer arrived in Bali, unbeknownst to Wiese-Mack, who had been vacationing on the island for several days with her daughter. Schaefer, at the urging of Heather, went to visit Wiese-Mack in room 317 at the hotel, carrying a bowl of fruit.
According to police, an argument quickly broke out over Heather’s pregnancy, with Wiese-Mack reportedly making offensive comments about Schaefer and his baby, allegedly threatening to kill the unborn child. Schaefer ended up beating Wiese-Mack to death with the fruit bowl after the argument escalated to the point that the victim wrapped her hands around Schaefer’s throat.
Shortly after the couple’s brief reunion on Sunday, they were transferred to Bali’s Kerobokan prison.