Just hours after being allowed to leave the police headquarters in Cancun, television producer Bruce Beresford-Redman was on the phone to Los Angeles Superior Court to testify in the guardianship hearing of his two children.
Beresford-Redman, who reported his wife Monica missing earlier this week in the resort city of Cancun, was detained as a suspect Thursday in his wife's death, the Associated Press reported. On Friday, he was downgraded to a person of interest and released.
In court Friday, it was revealed that the couple's two children have been staying with Monica's sister Carla Burgos, who requested the court to issue an order formalizing her temporary guardianship.
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Judge Michael Beckloff denied the request, and ruled that for now the children should stay with their paternal grandparents, Bruce Beresford-Redman's parents.
Earlier in the day, the children's grandfather, David Beresford-Redman, expressed confidence in his son's innocence in this statement:
My wife and I are grief stricken at the loss of our beloved daughter-in-law Monica Beresford-Redman ... She was a loving wife and mother, and we urge Mexican law enforcement authorities to identify those responsible for this horrendous crime.
Despite being released, Bruce Beresford-Redman was ordered to stay in Mexico, a state investigator said Friday.
"He won't be able to leave the country until we conclude our investigation into what caused her death," said Quintana Roo state investigator Veronica Acacio.
Monica Beresford-Redman was on vacation with her family, staying at the Moon Palace Hotel in Cancun. A Mexican official said her body was found Thursday in a gutter at the resort.
At a news conference Friday, investigators said they believe Monica Beresford-Redman was strangled. They also said she was not killed at the same location where her body was discovered. Her body had scratches on the neck, signs of asphyxiation and a heavy blow to the right temple, said Francisco Alor, the attorney general for Quintana Roo state, where Cancun is located.
Authorities are waiting for autopsy results.
On Thursday, then-state Attorney General Bello Rodriguez said a security guard at the hotel saw the couple arguing Monday night and Bruce Beresford-Redman tried to hit her. Coincidentally, Thursday was the day Rodriguez stepped down as Quintana Roo's attorney general and was replaced by Alor.
"What we need to determine is whether that blow was from falling into the sewer,'' Alor said late Thursday, adding that authorities had determined she died Monday night.
Bruce Beresford-Redman told police Tuesday that his wife left the hotel the previous day and never returned, said an official who wished to remain anonymous.
Bruce Beresford-Redman reportedly flew back to LA following the death of his wife, LA Weekly reported.
"She's going to be very missed," said friend Mariza Alyrio. "I can't believe it's her. I hope he didn't do that. I don't want to believe it. He doesn't seem like that kind of guy."
Monica Beresford-Redman's sister Carla Burgos told RadarOnline.com on Thursday that the couple was having marital problems.
"I know he was having an affair," Burgos told RadarOnline.com exclusively. "And she found out."
In an interview with NBCLA on Wednesday, Burgos did not mention an affair, but she did say the trip was a chance to work out some problems.
"They had problems in the past, and they're were trying to reconcile and be in a good mood for the kids, and being a family and happy. That's what the trip was about," Burgos said.
"They weren't lovey-dovey, at least when I saw them, and they didn't smile a lot," said Ratana Necth, 36, a nanny for a family in the Palos Verdes, Calif. neighborhood where the couple and their two child resided. Necth described the couple as nice and said they always seemed "on the go."
Monica Beresford-Redman, who owns Brazilian restaurant Zabumba in Palms, and her family were scheduled to return to Los Angeles on Thursday, which is her birthday. The restaurant was closed Thursday and a memorial has started to form outside.
NBCLA's John Cadiz Klemack has traveled to Cancun to report on the story. His real-time updates are currently available on his Twitter feed.
Who Is Bruce Beresford-Redman?
Bruce Beresford-Redman was a producer for several episodes of the Emmy-nominated CBS reality show "Survivor," including "The Amazon" and "Marquesas" seasons, but was not currently working with the program, according to his profile on IMDb.com.
The Internet Movie Database also names him as the co-creator of "Pimp My Ride," a popular MTV car makeover show, and as an executive producer for "Crash Course," a driving game show produced by A. Smith & Co. Productions that aired on ABC last summer.
Beresford-Redman was nominated for three Emmys for his work on "Survivor," the long-running reality TV competition that strands tribes of strangers in remote locales to outwit, outplay and outlast each other for a $1 million prize.
Bruce Beresford-Redman worked for reality TV giant Mark Burnett, who produces "Survivor" and is currently producing Sarah Palin's eight-part series about her home state of Alaska.