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Drew Peterson Case Heading to Supreme Court

Will County State's Attorney James Glasgow has filed a petition to appeal the Drew Peterson hearsay decision with the Illinois Supreme Court.

A Will County Judge kicked out eight of 14 damning hearsay statements prosecutors want to use against accused wife-killer Drew Peterson. The appellate court agreed to keep them out. And now Will County State’s Attorney James Glasgow is going to the state supreme court in a last ditch effort to get them spoken aloud at Peterson’s murder trial.

Glasgow filed his petition to appeal to the Illinois Supreme Court Friday, asking the state’s top judges to overturn a decision on hearsay evidence made by now retired Will County Judge Stephen White in 2010.

The petition was filed under seal and approved by Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan.

Glasgow was confident the Illinois Supreme Court would both review the appeal and rule in his favor.

"The appellate court dismissed the appeal on a procedural technicality without getting to the issues of the case," he said. "I believe the state supreme court will want to set the record straight in that regard."

The appellate court ruled that Glasgow missed his deadline to file an appeal, but the state's attorney insists the filing was timely due to a ruling in a DuPage County death penalty case changing the legal landscape.

Waiting on murder trial

Peterson, a disgraced former Bolingbrook cop who retired in 2007 rather than face an internal affairs probe into the disappearance of his much younger fourth wife, Stacy Peterson, has been jailed since May 2009 on murder charges.

The charges stem from the death of his third wife, Kathleen Savio, who was found drowned in a dry bathtub in March 2004 but was not considered a homicide victim until more than three years later.

The state police insisted Savio perished in a freak bathing accident until Stacy Peterson mysteriously vanished in October 2007.

The state police then abruptly reversed course, not only launching an intense reinvestigation of Savio’s death — including the exhumation of her corpse for further examination — but declaring that Drew Peterson was the sole suspect in the “potential homicide” of Stacy Peterson.

Drew Peterson has yet to be charged with harming his still missing fourth wife.

New Law

Following Stacy’s disappearance, Glasgow crafted and helped push through new legislation allowing hearsay evidence to be used in the event a witness was made unavailable to testify. Then he conducted a month-long hearing featuring more than 70 witnesses in an attempt to convince Judge White to allow hearsay statements against Peterson at a murder trial.

To allow any of the 14 statements at trial, White had to agree that it was likely Peterson killed both Stacy and Savio. White gave the green light to six of the statements but Glasgow wanted more, and the day before Peterson’s trial was to start in July 2010, he filed an appeal of the judge’s ruling.

The appellate court sided with White, handing down its decision last month. Glasgow had a 35-day window to appeal the appellate court’s decision and did so today, a mere four days before it was to close.

One of Peterson's attorneys, Joseph "Shark" Lopez, said he had yet to see Glasgow's petition but was skeptical of whether it would sway the state supreme court enough to hear an appeal.

"I doubt it," Lopez said.

"If they take it, it will be called the new 'Drew Exception,' just like the useless 'Drew's Law.'" he said.

The hearsay legislation Glasgow worked to pass prior to Peterson's arrest has come to be derided in some circles as "Drew's Law," since it was supposedly passed to prosecute him sepecifically.

Glasgow denies this and pointed out that after the passage of the new hearsay law it was first used in a DuPage County case and not against Peterson.

Lopez also said he understands Madigan's office assisted in crafting the petition to appeal.

"I wanted Glasgow to do it himself," Lopez said, "so we could see all the typos."

paul peck August 27, 2011 at 09:23 PM
There is another issue that does not always make it in the press. What if Peterson is found guilty of committing crime, and manipulating the system to get away with it. If found guilty, he will be shown to have been a criminal. If there are past persons he arrested and who were convicted and are serving time on the tax payers nickle, a conviction may be enough to open an appeal process in some of his past collars. Some his past collars may be innocent and serving time paid for by the tax payers. Some of his past collars may not be innocent but may be able to appeal. Sorting out past misdeeds and correcting them can be a real can of worms for the court. It may be easier to aquit, keep an innocent person incarcerated and continue to tax the citizen for the misconduct rather than to make redress. This is a strong motive inherent in the court system that creates significant issues for trials that involve those in authority accused of committing misconduct. Let us hope these things are navigated well.
Lori Janiec August 28, 2011 at 01:52 AM
Well, that will be a bit sticky now, won't it???
paul peck August 28, 2011 at 02:29 AM
It may be....my posts were merely general issues that are faced in corruption cases. They are not exclusive to this one. These forces, such as the big can of worms of what exposure of an officers ill deeds may have been a milleau that has allowed peterson to circumvent scrutiny that most persons could not. But these issues of difficulty in prosecution have been addressed in the past. Heres hoping it does not get sticky.
lyndia August 30, 2011 at 10:56 PM
I believe this man is guilty but they are going to have a difficult time proving it. (He looks like grandpa with his last two wives.)
paul peck August 30, 2011 at 11:42 PM
I heard on the news that a police officer was on the inquest jury. I do not know if it is true or just reported in the news. I heard on the news that an officer who was never at the crime scene gave testimony about the crime scene to the coroner regarding evidence of a struggle. Again, I do not know if it is true or was just on the news. He is innocent until proven guilty, but I too am biased against him and would have to excuse myself as a juror. I believe his profession put him in a good position to manipulate.

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