10News on Saturday spoke with the former fitness trainer of a woman who was found dead in a Coronado mansion.
Rebecca Zahau's death came to light on Wednesday morning when the brother of the woman's pharmaceuticals magnate boyfriend made a 911 call. Police arrived to find Zahau's body in a yard behind the main residence.
The man who made the call, Adam Shacknai, told investigators he found Zahau's body hanging from a second-floor balcony over a courtyard and cut the rope or cord attached to her neck to get her down, sheriff's homicide Capt. Tim Curran said. Medics tried to revive the nude woman whose ankles and wrists were bound but pronounced her dead at the scene.
Reed Holman, a trainer at Hollywood Fitness in Coronado, said he would see Zahau come into the gym three to four times a week.
"As far as I knew, you know
a very nice woman. It seemed like she had a lot going for her," said Holman. "She was always happy [and] always smiling when she came in. I didn't see a problem or anything like that."
On Monday, Zahau was reportedly watching over her boyfriend Jonah Shacknai's 6-year-old son Max when he fell down a staircase inside the Spreckles mansion. The boy was taken to Rady Children's Hospital and later passed away from his injuries.
On Wednesday, Zahau was found hanging nude from the rear balcony of the home owned by Shacknai.
Joe Ochoa, the manager of Hollywood Fitness, told 10News, "It's a real tragedy. They seemed like a real nice couple."
Ochoa also said Zahau and Shacknai would go to the gym and work out together.
"They like seem good people, he seems like an especially astute businessman
and they seemed to get along great," said Ochoa.
Holman said he had just spoken to Zahau on Saturday, a few days before she was found dead.
"I asked her, 'How is your day going?'
you know, 'Anything going on in the weekend?' said Holman. "She had mentioned they were getting ready for some party or something like that [and]
seemed happy and upbeat about it."
Authorities still have not ruled Zahau's death a homicide or a suicide.
Detectives with the Coronado Police Department executed a search warrant at the mansion on Friday. Investigators could be seen shining flashlights on the railing of the home's grand staircase, where the boy was reportedly injured.
An autopsy on Zahau was done at the Medical Examiner's Office Thursday, but no information about the woman's cause of death has been made public. Officials say they are withholding the information until they get the results of toxicology tests.
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