Judge just asked prosecutors if they have their rebuttal witnesses ready.
Drew Peterson tells judge he will not testify in his own defense.
Judge reminds jury that they are not to pay attention to media coverage in the case. Says they must tell him if they do. They are sent home for the night.
Trial in recess until 9 a.m. CDT Thursday.
Prosecution cross-examining Tom Peterson
Jury, Tom Peterson coming back into the courtroom.
Prosecutors now trying to show Tom Peterson has changed story about his mom’s bath time habits since he testified to grand jury-when he said Savio would bathe after he and his brother were in bed.
No further questions from prosecution for Tom Peterson. Brodsky back for re-direct.
Tom Peterson says he used to take baths with mom when he was younger. His knowledge of mom’s bath habits from those early years.
Tom Peterson off the stand. Smiles at his father as he leaves.
After testimony, Tom Peterson politely says he does not want to speak w/ media. “God, no,” he says softly. “I don’t want any part of that.”
Judge comes back on the bench and says “bring the witness back up.” Tom Peterson has already left the court-house.
Both sides have decided that they have no further questions for Tom Peterson. So his testimony has ended.
Attorneys discuss exhibits they hope to move to evidence.
Defense calls defendant’s son, Tom Peterson, to the witness stand.
Attorney Brodsky is doing the examination.
Tom Peterson, 19, said he is a student at University of Pennsylvania. He plans to go to med school — studying neuroscience with an emphasis in computation.
Tom tells jury that he was valedictorian of his Bolingbrook HS class.
Tom Peterson tells jury that he has “never suspected” that his father Drew Peterson killed his mother.
Tom Peterson says that Drew Peterson is a good guy. “He’s a happy-go-lucky guy.
Tom Peterson tells jury that his father was “very happy” with his life around the time of his mother’s death.
Tom Peterson on visitations: “We all had a really good time. Stacy was very fun.”
On weekend Savio died, Tom says Drew Peterson picked him for visitation as usual. Tom says there was no change in dad’s general demeanor.
Tom Peterson recounting how upset his father was when he told him Savio had died. “I’ve never seen someone so sad,” Tom says. “He was very very shaken up about it. …”very troubling to see him so shaken up.”
Tom on his mom’s bath habits: “She definitely liked to have hot baths.”
Tom Peterson: “I believe that my dad is completely innocent,” Judge strikes the remark, but jury still heard it.
Jurors out so attorneys & Burmila can argue over whether Smith is being inconsistent with grand jury testimony.
Brodsky is doing re-direct examination now.
“Isn’t it true that when Stacy Peterson asked you about threatening to tell the police that you told her to be careful because she could be arrested for extortion?” “During that call, I did tell her to be careful. But it wasn’t about extortion.” “What were you telling her to be careful for? She could be arrested for telling a falsehood?” “No, that’s not what I told her. I told her to be careful because she could be arrested for concealment of a homicide.” “She told you her cell phone had GPS?” “Yes.” “Isn’t it true all cell phones have GPS?” Objection/Sustained. There are no more questions for this witness, and he is excused.
(Attorney Joe Lopez says Smith testimony “was part good, part bad. You take the good with the bad.”)
(Hostile witness means defense can ask more leading questions and have tighter control on the witness’ testimony.)
Direct examination continues.
“So Stacy wanted to say whatever she could in order to get more money out of Drew Peterson?’ “No, she wanted to say that he killed Kathy . . .that was absolutely one of the reasons that she gave.” “She said, ‘If I give information, give me money’?’ “No, she said, ‘If I threaten to do this, can we get more money.”
Smith: Stacy talked about taking the kids out-of-state. She did not go running to the police.
Brodsky asks Smith about DP’s visitation rights w/ the kids, including Mondays on a holiday weekend.
Smith talks about profits split from the sale of the printing co. ‘Fast & Accurate Printing.
Defense asks for a sidebar when Brodsky asks witness if Kathy would get angry during the divorce.
Jurors are out as attorneys, Burmila discuss.
Connor says questioning ‘way beyond financial motive’, Brodsky says he’ll withdraw the question. Jurors return.
Brodsky has no further questions for Smith.
ASA Connor on cross with Savio divorce attorney Harry Smith.
Harry Smith tells jury Stacy indicated Drew was mad at her because she told son Tom that he killed Savio.
Smith warned Stacy to be careful.. Smith: “She told me she had too much shit on him to ever do anything to her.”
Pros: Did (Stacy) also tell you that Drew Peterson was surveilling her or following her? Smith: Yes.
Smith: during phone call, heard Drew Peterson call to Stacy, asked her what she was doing and who she was talking to. After second interruption she hung up.
Smith: Stacy said she thought Drew Peterson was tracking her cell phone’s GPS, but added she had another cell he didn’t know about.
Defense attorneys arguing in hallway about whether or not to all Harry Smith. The risks could outweigh the benefits.
Jurors entering courtroom as defense prepares to call their next witness.
Prosecutor: Cops who wrote report on interview with Tom Peterson will be available to defense team this afternoon.
Joel Brodsky calls Harry Smith to the stand.
Smith says Savio became a client of his in January 2002.
Prosecution makes first objection of Smith testimony when Brodsky asks if Savio divorce case was bifurcated.
Smith says he received phone call from Stacy Peterson. Police report shows that call was in Oct. 2007.
At that time, she wanted to retain Smith as a divorce attorney, he says.
Jury out of courtroom after Brodsky asks judge permission to treat Smith as a hostile witness.
State: First you have to establish some hostility.
Judge agrees with prosecution and strongly warns Brodsky not refer to Smith as an “adverse witness” in front of jury again.
Asked if Stacy Peterson ever retained Smith, Smith said no. Asked why, he stumbled for words.
Smith says he didn’t answer because he knows much testimony about Stacy has been barred.
Smith of phone call with Stacy Peterson: “She wanted to know if, in my opinion, the fact that he killed Kathy could be used against him.”
Jury’s out. Burmila: Smith keeps trying to make eye contact with prosecutors before answering each question.
Brodsky again said he would like to treat Smith as a hostile witness.
Defense attys argue Smith changed testimony from earlier hearings. Judge agrees, says Smith can be treated as a hostile witness.
Defense calls ISP officer Eileen Payonk to the stand – in charge of re-investigation of Savio case.
Witness is asked about re-interviewing Mary Parks. Witness says she spoke with Parks 3 times.
Greenberg is asking Payonk to confirm people, records involved in re-investigation of Savio’s death.
Witness details everyone who was present for Savio’s 2nd autopsy.
The witness says the bedroom carpet was taken up and tested and that bathroom was inspected–even the grout was removed and sent in for testing. The prosecution then asks for a sidebar.
In a conversation w/ Savio’s sister Anna Doman, Payonk said she was given affidavit to open a safe deposit box.
Greenberg has no further questions for Payonk. State moves in for cross-examination.
(Dr. Michael Baden just arrived at the courthouse.)
On cross, Payonk says not all people she just said were present during Savio’s 2nd autopsy were in room. Some were just in the building.
Payonk confirmed that the state police removed the bathtub from Savio’s house, which is now occupied by a new family.
No further questions from state. Greenberg begins re-direct of cross.
Payonk confirms that carpeting in Savio home, from stairway to second floor, was removed and taken into evidence.
Payonk is done testifying and the jury is leaving for lunch.
Attorneys still at the bench arguing over Tom Peterson’s interview discovery. Brodsky says Tom was “interrogated” for five hours.
Defense wants prosecution to be barred from using info gathered during ISP interview with Tom Peterson during cross.
Prosecutor apologizes for error and says he thought he had shared it. State says mistake really doesn’t hurt defense case
Judge says “we definitely have a pattern here” and “we clearly have a discovery violation here.”
Judge says, however, the ordinary sanction for such a violation is a continuance and the defense has had time to talk to Tom.
Burmila: striking report of Tom Peterson is “too severe.” Since defense knew of interview, judge wants officers to come in and testify.
Burmila wants cops who prepared report to be at courthouse no later than 5 p.m. today
Trial in recess until 1:15 p.m. CDT.
(Brodsky outside court: Tom Peterson will be our final witness.)
Prosecutor Koch begins cross.
Collins says “that’s possible” when asked if a struggle could have happened with no evidence left behind.
Prosecutor points out photo showing a picture on Savio’s dresser knocked down. Collins hadn’t mentioned it.
Greenberg begins his redirect. “When there’s a struggle, sometimes there’s evidence and sometimes there’s not?” “Yes.” “And there were no signs that night that Ms. Savio had been in a
The State has no recross for this witness. He is excused, and leaves the stand.
Illinois State Police interviewed Tom Peterson in May 2012 at UPenn, where he is a student.
Judge asking prosecutors why they didn’t disclose a report of interview to defense and how defense knew of interview.
Judge says let’s call other witnesses until they can sort out matter.
Defense calls Illinois State Police Sgt. Patrick Collins.(questioned by attorney Greenberg)
Atty asks Collins how long he has been the case investigator. “What case in particular are you talking about?” he asks.
Collins is questioned about Nick Pontarelli’s actions on the night that Savio’s body was discovered and a photo that Nick took of Savio when he was helping her around the house one day. He says that he never talked to Nick Pontarelli.
Atty Greenberg walking Collins thru death scene pics, having Sgt. agree over and over there was no sign of struggle in the house
(Tom is out in the courthouse hallway waiting to testify. Attorney Harry Smith also has just arrived at the courthouse. Sixth day spent here waiting to be called to testify.)
State asks for a sidebar when Greenberg asks witness how many people they interviewed in the neighborhood.
“The agents reported nothing unusual to me in this investigation,” Collins says of canvas of neighborhood after Savio found dead.
“Did you get any calls from anyone alerting you to problems between Ms. Savio and Mr. Peterson, during the course of your 2004 investigation?” “No.”
Judge is on the bench.
He’ll hear some motions before witnesses are called
Prosecutors objecting to defense calling Savio divorce attorney Harry Smith.
Prosecutors tell judge that Drew overheard Stacy call w/ Harry Smith. She disappeared two days later.
Judge Burmila makes his ruling. He says if the defense uses this testimony for impeachment that makes the entire hearsay applicable. However, any reference to Stacy’s disappearance will be banned.
State did not turn over a complete May 2012 interview Tom Peterson had with investigators to defense. Judge not thrilled about it.
Defense attorney just said to the media “This is either going to go really well today or really south”
Defense moves to bar prosecution from using complete May 2012 statement from Tom Peterson, calling it a “disclosure violation.”
What will the jurors wear today — clown suits?
Thomas Peterson, the eldest son of Kathleen Savio and Drew Peterson, may take the witness stand today.
Defense may rest today.
Rebuttal witnesses on deck for prosecution: Dr. Blum & Dr. Baden.
Jurors wearing blue and orange today.
Yesterday the defense called two forensic pathologists to state their opinions that Kathleen Savio’s death was accidental. At the end of the day they also called two ISP officers to try impeach the testimony of Kristin Anderson, Savio’s friend and one time tenant.
Stacy St. Clair
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