While the future of Heather Mack’s six-year-old daughter, Stella, hangs in the balance, a longtime friend of Mack’s murdered Chicago socialite mother, Sheila von Weise-Mack, tells Fox News Digital that he never thought Heather Mack wanted to be a mother himself and used the girl as a “meal ticket”.
“Ever since this tragedy happened, I have always felt that Heather Mack had no interest in being a mother, even though she posed for photo shoots,” said Elliott Jacobson, a close friend of von Weise-Mack who held a tribute. for her 2014 funeral, Fox News Digital told when he was called up earlier Wednesday. “What I have really felt is that she used her daughter, Stella, as a food ticket to what is left of Sheila’s property, because a civil court in Chicago ruled that Stella, rightly in our view, is the only beneficiary of what is left. but she is of course 6 years old. ”
The FBI arrested Mack, now 26, at Chicago’s O’Hare International Airport on Wednesday morning.
Joseph D. Fitzpatrick, assistant district attorney for the Northern District of Illinois, told Fox News Digital that he did not immediately have information about Stella, who is believed to be traveling with Mack and Oshar Putu Melody Suartama, an Australian woman married to a Balinese man who has served as Stella’s foster mother for the past five years while Mack was still imprisoned in Indonesia.
FBI ARRESTES ‘SUITCASE KILLER’ HEATHER MACK AT CHICAGO AIRPORT AFTER BACK FROM BALI
“The best case scenario for Stella is that she is taken out of Heather Mack’s custody and whoever takes the girl finds a suitable couple to adopt her,” Jacobson said. “This would be much better if she was much younger, because now she has a memory from the last few years, and in the end she will find out – when I do not know – the story behind her birth. Not exactly a good way to get into the world.I think the best thing that can happen is for the authorities to take Stella out of Heather’s custody, find the right organization to plan her possible adoption, even considering possibly the couple in Indonesia, who took care of Stella for the last four or five years. “
Mack and her ex-boyfriend, Tommy Schaefer, now 28, were indicted every Wednesday for one case of conspiracy to kill in a foreign country, one for conspiracy to commit foreign murder on a U.S. citizen and one for obstruction. Mack will appear in court later Wednesday in Illinois, as Schaefer remains in prison in Indonesia.
Mack and Schaefer were prosecuted and convicted in Indonesia in 2015 for the murder of Von Weise inside a hotel room on St. Regis Bali Resort, when the two allegedly killed her inside a room, stuffed her body in a suitcase and loaded the luggage in the truck by taxi. Mack was sentenced to 10 years in prison, and Schaefer was sentenced to 18 years in prison. Mack, who served only seven years because of his good behavior, was released on October 29 and deported to the United States. Schaefer remains in custody by the Indonesian authorities.
The Chicago Tribune previously reported that a settlement was reached in 2018 in which Heather Mack waived any right to Sheila von Wiese-Mack’s property, making Stella the sole beneficiary.
One of Mack’s U.S.-based lawyers, Brian Claypool, previously told Fox News Digital that he was fighting for Stella’s Australian foster mother to take over custody if Mack were to be arrested. He took part in an emergency hearing on Tuesday when Kia Walker, who is Schaefer’s mother and therefore Stella’s grandmother, had also joined the fight for the girl when she returned to the United States.
It is unclear whether Stella was taken into custody by Child Protective Services.
“I do not know Kia Walker, except that she has made a proposal to take custody of Stella,” Jacobson said. “I’m not sure it’s in Stella’s best interest either. I do not know her well and I do not know her background, but there is always the persistent feeling that she is taking on this responsibility to gain access to the estate. “It has been left to Stella. And whether it is true or not, I do not know. I have no proof of that. But it gives the impression that it is the case. I do not think that is a good idea.”
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According to the federal indictment, Schaefer allegedly exchanged text messages with his cousin, Robert Bibbs, about various ways to kill von Weise. Mack and Schaefer also exchanged messages discussing how and when to kill von Weise, prosecutors say. In 2016, Bibbs pleaded guilty to having helped plan the $ 50,000 homicide in return that Mack was expected to inherit, and is serving a nine-year prison sentence in Michigan. Mack wanted access to a $ 1.5 million trust fund set up after her father’s death in 2006, the famous jazz arranger James L. Mack.
Jacobson met Sheila von Weise-Mack in 1983 after coming to Illinois to lead a political campaign. A longtime friend of hers and her late husband, Jacobson, was commissioned to deliver Sheila’s praise during a memorial service in St. Louis. Chrysostom’s Episcopal Church in Chicago on September 27, 2014.
As a prominent socialist in Chicago, von Weise-Mack had gotten to know and befriend Jackie Kennedy, Senator Ted Kennedy, and the famous Chicago writer Louis “Studs” Terkel among other novelists, artists, and political figures, according to a copy of her eulogy. . to Fox News Digital.
“Still, Sheila was not a name drop,” Jacobsen recalled in the memorial speech. “To be admitted into Sheila’s ever – growing circle, one only had to reach out, receive her, and understand, feel, and act on the principle that friendship was the mutual, self-conscious, unconditional acceptance of people for one another. became friends. Sheila, infinitely more often than not it was a friendship that had the legs to go far. ”