The husband of a woman lost at sea since May asked the Coast Guard to officially declare her dead just four days after she went missing.
Fox News reports that although the Coast Guard denied his request at the time, Lewis Bennett is now asking the court that his wife Isabella Hellman be declared dead.
As CrimeOnline previously reported, Hellmann, a 41-year-old mother of an infant who married Bennett just three months before, went missing on May 15 during a sailing trip with her new husband. Bennett told investigators that Isabella was nowhere to be seen on his catamaran when he was woken in the middle of the night by the sense that the boat had hit something in the water.
The couple has an infant daughter who is about a year old, and Bennett said in Facebook post last month that he brought her back to the UK, where he is a citizen. Hellmann’s family appears to view Bennett with suspicion, and they have requested to take control of Isabella’s assets while continuing a social media campaign to search for the missing woman, and also to bring her daughter home to Florida.
According to Fox News, Bennett has filed to dismiss the family’s petition regarding Hellmann’s assets, and his request to have the court declare her dead is included within that filing, according to WPTV. He’s asking to dismiss his in-laws’ petition on the grounds that Isabella does not have a will and he and his daughter would be entitled to any assets.
Last month, the FBI performed a day-long search of the Delray, Florida, condominium where the couple lived, but have not revealed any details about what was found or how it pertains to the death investigation.
Feature photo: Facebook