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Bali 'suitcase killer' Heather Mack 'scared' to return to US with daughter born in prison after she & lover killed mom

SO-CALLED "suitcase killer" Heather Mack has revealed she is "fearful" of returning to the US with her daughter who was born in prison after being jailed in Bali for her part in her own mother's murder.

Heather Mack, who was only 18 and pregnant at the time, helped then-lover Tommy Schaefer kill millionaire Sheila von Wiese-Mack in 2014 before stuffing her corpse in a suitcase – which they then stashed in the back of a taxi while holidaying in Bali.

Schaefer was sentenced to 18 years in prison for premeditated murder after telling the court he killed 62-year-old von Wiese-Mack with the metal handle of a fruit bowl.

Mack was handed a 10-year sentence for helping plan her mom's murder and during their sensational trial in 2015, she gave birth to daughter Stella in prison.

But last week, Indonesian President Joko Widodo decided Mack, now 25, can be released in October – almost three years early – for good behavior

She will immediately be deported to the US, where she grew up in a $1.5 million Italian Renaissance-style home in Chicago – but is unsure where she will take Stella back with her.

“I am fearful and nervous of returning to Chicago," Mack told the New York Post.

"I’m not worried about the idea that people cannot understand the tragedy for my sake.

"But I’m nervous for (my daughter) Stella. I’m scared that if she comes back to the States with me, she will be exposed to what happened.”

Mack is considering leaving Stella, now six, temporarily with the Bali foster family who has raised her since she was just two years old, especially as the youngster remains unaware as to why her parents are in prison.

I’m nervous for (my daughter) Stella. I’m scared that if she comes back to the States with me, she will be exposed to what happened.

"I do not want anyone shoving a camera into Stella’s face. I know that it will happen to me but I will do my best to protect Stella from that trauma," Mack told the outlet.

“I absolutely regret what happened. I loved my mom – I still do.

"She wasn’t evil, and she didn’t deserve to die the way she did. I didn’t kill her for money. It was for my freedom and Stella’s freedom, or so I thought at the time. I think of her a thousand times a day."

Both Mack and Schaefer were found guilty of first degree murder in 2015 and were locked up in Bali’s Kerobokan prison.

Their trial heard the killing was carried out in the luxury in a room at Bali’s five-star St. Regis resort, before the pair stuffed the body into a suitcase which they loaded into a cab before fleeing the scene.

After the driver alerted police, they were arrested at a budget hotel a few miles away.

The only child of a wealthy family, Mack says her childhood was perfect until her father, celebrated jazz composer James L Mack, died when she was 10 and she was left alone with her mother Sheila von Wiese-Mack.

In an extended face-to-face interview in 2019, Mack said: "My mother was super abusive because she was an alcoholic and a drug addict. I still have these.

“These are from when she stabbed me with her nails, this one was a cigarette burn.

“One time she even set my hair on fire. It may have looked like I was rebelling when I was a teenager because I was hanging out with gang members and missing school. But it wasn’t like that.

“My mother would drink heavily at night and once she was drunk she’d start fighting with me because I’d hide her car keys to stop her going for a drive to the store to get more booze.

“If I fell asleep early, she’d fall down the staircase so I rarely got to bed before five or six in the morning, and I’d wake up when she woke up about 1pm.

“At school, they thought I was a spoilt rich kid who was partying till dawn but they had no idea I was being chased around the house all night by my mother with a kitchen knife.”


Though the murder took place in Bali, Mack revealed she planned it back home in Chicago – though the killing didn’t quite go as they expected it.

“I was the one who said it first. I planned it all in Chicago,” she said during the interview with

“But when it happened at the hotel it wasn’t like that. There were huge knives in the kitchen for cutting up pineapples. If we had planned to kill her then, we would’ve gone for the knives.

“It just happened in the heat of the moment. He beat her to death with a fruit bowl that was in his hand.”

She said stuffing her corpse in a suitcase was her idea.

“Tommy was saying we should leave her there and run but I was like no, I just didn’t want to leave her there," Mack added.

“So we wrapped her up with tape, put her in a suitcase and got it outside to a taxi.

“But when we refused to let the taxi driver help us put the suitcase in the back of his car he became suspicious. He thought it was drugs, he wanted to open it, so we left it and ran.

“Yes, I feel remorse. She didn’t deserve to die.”

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