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LOCAL : Costa Mesa Woman’s Death Called Suicide, Linked to 1982 Murder

From Times staff and wire service reports

Authorities today confirmed that a Costa Mesa woman who died in December apparently committed suicide by drinking cyanide poisoning--possibly from the same batch her father used to kill his mother seven years ago.

The body of Roxene Jacobs, 37, was discovered in the bedroom of her Avocado Street apartment on Dec. 7. Police found a drinking glass with a spoon and crystallized potassium cyanide in the bottom.

Police had been tight-lipped about the cause of death until the results of toxicology tests were released.

Jacobs’ father, Herbert B. Baetz of Newport Beach, was convicted of first-degree murder in 1982 for poisoning his 87-year-old mother, Janette Baetz. Herbert Baetz said he did it at his mother’s request, but prosecutors argued that he murdered her. He was sentenced to 25 years to life in prison.

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