Heather Mack focuses on daughter as she awaits trial verdict

Karen Jordan Image
Monday, April 20, 2015

CHICAGO (WLS) -- Heather Mack says her focus is her four-week old daughter, Stella. Mack told people magazine from her prison cell in Bali that tending to her newborn keeps her from thinking about what could happen tomorrow.

On Tuesday, an Indonesian panel of three judges will decide whether Mack and her boyfriend, Tommy Schaefer are guilty of murdering Mack's mother, Sheila Von Wiese-Mack.

Vanessa Flavia represents baby Stella and says the infant is thriving despite being in a Balinese jail with urgent needs.

"She needs diapers, clothing, blankets medical care, everything that a newborn needs," Flavia says.

Flavia says while mother and baby have been treated humanely, in Bali, prisoners have to pay for necessities like food, toilet paper and a mattress.

Mack budgeted $10 a day to take care of herself, which comes from her $1.3 million trust fund. But now she has filed papers with Flavia to turn over 30 percent of that money to provide care for Stella.

"She's taking this new role very seriously," Flavia says, "and that's what prompted her to make this decision to give up a portion of her trust to safeguard Stella's financial future."

If found guilty of premeditated murder, prosecutors have asked the judges for the lightest possible sentences for Mack and Schafer, 15 and 18 year jail terms, respectively.

But the maximum penalty could be death by firing squad.

"She's not focusing on that," says Flavia. "She's focusing on Stella, her child. That's what's keeping her sane right now."