Case History

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Case History Empty Case History

Post by CherokeeNative on Sun Jul 29, 2012 1:49 pm

Drew Walter Peterson (born January 5, 1954) is a former Bolingbrook, Illinois, police sergeant who is suspected of killing his third and fourth wives. The story has received national media attention in the United States. Peterson has repeatedly denied involvement in both cases. On May 7, 2009, Peterson was indicted by a Will County, Illinois, grand jury and charged with the murder of his third wife, Kathleen Savio. Peterson currently resides in the Will County Adult Detention Center in Joliet, Illinois, awaiting trial.

Drew Peterson had a 30-year career as a police officer. He began working with the Bolingbrook Police Department in Illinois in 1977. In 1978, he was assigned to Metropolitan Area Narcotics Squad, and in 1979, he received a "Police Officer of the Year" award from the department.

In 1985, Peterson was fired from the Bolingbrook Police Department after the village board of police and fire commissioners found him guilty of disobedience, conducting a self-assigned investigation, failure to report a bribe immediately, and official misconduct. He had been indicted two months earlier on charges of official misconduct and failure to report a bribe. Peterson was working under the auspices of the Metropolitan Area Narcotics Squad at the time. Indictments alleged he solicited drugs in exchange for information about his agency. The charges later were dropped. Special prosecutor Raymond Bolden said at the time the charges were not provable. Peterson won reinstatement with the department in March 1986. Judge Edwin Grabiec ruled police and fire commissioners lacked sufficient evidence to find Peterson guilty of the charges. Peterson was also accused of using excessive force for allegedly breaking the thumb of an arrestee in May 2007. The charges were later dismissed on the grounds that Peterson was not present during the arrest, nor on duty that day.

Carol Brown

Peterson was married to his first wife, Carol (Hamilton) Brown, from 1974 to 1980. She divorced him after she learned about his infidelity. Peterson and Brown met in high school in Villa Park, Illinois, and together attended his senior prom.

Victoria Connolly

Peterson married his second wife, Victoria (Rutkiewicz) Connolly, in 1982. Connolly has alleged a history of abuse during her 10-year marriage to Peterson, as has her daughter who lived in the household during this time, from the ages of 8 to 17. In 2007, Connolly stated that Peterson "was a legend in his own mind". She divorced him after Peterson started dating Kathleen Savio, who would later become his third wife. Their divorce was finalized on February 18, 1992, and Peterson married Savio two months later.

Kathleen Savio

Peterson married Kathleen Savio (born June 13, 1963) on May 3, 1992. Their divorce was finalized on October 10, 2003. It was reported that between 2002 and 2004, police were called out to the Peterson house 18 times on domestic disturbance calls, including calls for returning children late after visitation. On March 1, 2004, Kathleen Savio's body was found in a waterless bathtub. Her death was initially ruled an accidental drowning by a coroner's jury that included a police officer who personally knew Peterson and assured the other jurors that Peterson was 'a good man who would never hurt his wife.'

However, following Stacy Peterson's disappearance, Savio's body was exhumed and underwent forensic examination on November 16, 2007. Dr. Michael Baden, a former New York City chief medical examiner who conducted the examination at the request of Savio's relatives and Fox News, concluded that she died of drowning following a struggle when her body was placed in the bathtub. The results of the official autopsy ordered by the county have yet to be released to the public. Will County State's Attorney James Glasgow told the press that after examining evidence in the case, he believed that the death was a "homicide staged to look like an accident." On February 21, 2008, Glasgow announced that a pathologist determined that Savio's death was a homicide, adding that the death had been investigated as such reopening the case following the exhumation.

Rev. Neil Schori, a pastor at Stacy Peterson's church, reported that Stacy had told him that Drew had killed Kathleen Savio and had made it look like an accident and that she was afraid of her husband. Stacy had provided Drew's alibi for his whereabouts on the evening on which Kathleen Savio died.

Stacy Ann Cales

Peterson married Stacy Ann Cales (born January 20, 1984) on October 18, 2003. She disappeared on October 28, 2007. Stacy Peterson was officially reported missing in the early hours of October 29, 2007, after her sister, Cassandra Cales, failed to hear from her when expected. Drew Peterson claims that Stacy called him at 9 p.m. on Sunday to tell him that she had left him for another man and that she had left her car at Bolingbrook's Clow International Airport.

The last recorded words from Stacy Peterson were left on a voicemail on her father's answering machine on October 17 at 12:37 p.m., 11 days before she disappeared. The message said, "Hey dad! It's me, Stacy, I just wanted to call you and tell you I love you. I also wanted to give you my new phone number. Okay, love you."

2007 disappearance of Stacy Ann Cales

Several leads have been followed in the investigation by Illinois State Police with FBI involvement. Four search warrants have been issued and carried on Drew Peterson's property following Stacy's disappearance, including seizure of his vehicle and Stacy's vehicle, and Drew's firearms.

Following the mysterious disappearance of his fourth wife Stacy on October 28, 2007, Peterson announced his plans to retire as a Bolingbrook police sergeant as of December 2007. On November 15, 2007, the Bolingbrook Police Pension Board voted to allow Peterson to collect his pension of $6,067.71 per month, stating current law gave them no option, as Peterson had not been convicted of a crime.

Rick Mims, Peterson's long-time friend, has admitted that Drew Peterson and Mims bought three blue containers from a cable company where they both worked part-time in 2003, and has provided photos of the containers to police. Mims had also sold his story to the tabloids for an undisclosed sum of money. Peterson's stepbrother, Thomas Morphey, who has a history of drug and alcohol addiction, attempted suicide two days after allegedly helping Drew carry a large blue plastic container from Peterson's Bolingbrook home to his sport utility vehicle, fearing he may have helped dispose of the body of Stacy Peterson. Neighbors reported seeing Peterson and another man hauling a 55-gallon barrel, large enough to hold a person, out of the house shortly after Stacy's disappearance. Cassandra Cales, Stacy's sister, said she wanted Drew Peterson to take a lie detector test about his knowledge of a blue barrel or container that she said she saw in their garage two days before Stacy disappeared. Joel Brodsky, Peterson's attorney, has denied any container is missing from the home. There were also reports of truckers referring to the containers, but their stories were treated as not credible, after it was found they were not in the Bolingbrook area at the times they claimed.

April 2008 appearance on Larry King Live

Drew Peterson appeared on Larry King Live on April 11, 2008. His lawyer was present as an adviser regarding which questions Peterson should answer. The interview reran on May 9, 2009, two days after Peterson's arrest. Peterson also has made guest appearances (including one from county jail) on radio station WLS with Mancow Muller. After the appearance on WLS, Will County Judge Stephen White severely limited Peterson's access to the media.

2008 engagement to Christina Raines

In December 2008, Drew Peterson's publicist Glenn Selig confirmed that Peterson was engaged to a 23-year-old, Christina Raines; she would be his fifth wife. On January 30, 2009, it was made public that Raines had moved out of Peterson's house. Her father, Ernie Raines, had issued an ultimatum, having her choose between him or Peterson. Raines had issued the ultimatum to his daughter because he didn't like the way Peterson began to control Christina; he was also scared that she would disappear as Stacy had. Raines moved out of Peterson's home "when she came to her senses", calling the engagement a publicity stunt designed to keep Peterson in the media spotlight. Then, in February 2009, Christina Raines and Peterson appeared on NBC's Today Show, confirming that she had moved back in with Peterson. Though his divorce from his fourth wife Stacy was not yet final, Peterson said he hopes to marry "as soon as possible". Christina Raines said her father made it clear he would not attend their wedding; she also admitted none of her friends or family support the relationship. When asked by NBC's Amy Robach if they would like to have more children, Peterson responded, "We have enough, we have 8 between us" (apparently including in the count his adult children, as there are only 6 children living in the home: the two he had with Kathleen Savio, the two he had with Stacy, and Christina's own two). Christina Raines replied, in a question-like tone, "Maybe one more?" When asked why she is with Peterson, Raines said, "I love him, he makes me laugh", and claimed to have no concern for her safety.

2009 indictment over Savio murder

On May 7, 2009, Peterson was indicted by the Will County Grand Jury and arrested for the murder of his third wife, Kathleen Savio. Bail was set at $20 million.

In October 2009, Peterson sued JP Morgan Chase for revoking a home-equity credit line that he wanted to use to pay legal expenses. His income of "nearly $109,000 per year" was not sufficient. In July 2010, Judge Stephen White ruled that Peterson would remain in the Will County Jail for the remainder of his trial and appeals process. Prosecutors argued he could pose a danger if released.

On July 21, 2010, it was revealed that hearsay statements indicating Drew Peterson killed two of his wives are not reliable enough for a jury to hear at his trial. After presiding over a lengthy hearsay hearing, Judge Stephen White issued a four-page sealed ruling in May obtained by the Daily Herald. White ruled that prosecutors proved Peterson killed both Kathleen Savio and Stacy Peterson "by a preponderance of the evidence," but nearly all statements attributed to Stacy Peterson "do not provide sufficient safeguards of reliability." (The standard of proof in homicide cases is "beyond a reasonable doubt"; "preponderance of the evidence" is the standard for fact-finding on questions of admissibility of evidence, even in a criminal case.) Stacy Peterson's statements are crucial to the prosecution's case, since it lacks other evidence.

In April 2012, a ruling was made in the murder case of Kathleen Savio. An Illinois appellate court ruled that prosecutors could use eight statements made by both the victim prior to her death and by Peterson's still-missing fourth wife Stacy prior her disappearance. The ruling reversed another judge's earlier decision that had prohibited the state from using the information at trial. Drew Peterson's defense had contended that introduction of these alleged hearsay comments would constitute a violation of the defendant's Sixth Amendment rights to confront those witnesses testifying against him.

While several exceptions do exist to counteract such a defense, a new Illinois law coined "Drew's Law" allows prosecutors to stretch beyond these limitations. Passed while investigators were looking for Stacy Peterson, the legislation permits courts to consider statements from "unavailable witnesses," provided that prosecutors are able to prove the witness was killed to prevent his or her testimony.

A Jury has been seated and Trial is expected to start on July 30, 2012.

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Anyone who believes the defendant is innocent is a racist and anyone who contributes money to his defense is a stupid racist.”.  ~Professor Frederick Leatherman

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