Drew Peterson murder trial: Jury selection day 2

UPDATE 03:48 p.m. CST:

Jury selection is complete: seven men and five women with four alternates (three male, one female).

UPDATE 03:02 p.m. CST:

Potential juror says she couldn’t send anyone to prison because she works at one and knows what happens there.

UPDATE 02:55 p.m. CST:

Back in court. Alternates are being chosen.

UPDATE 12:55 p.m.CST:

Lunch break. One alternate has been added so far. Looks as if everyone will be able to go home at a decent hour today.

UPDATE 12:40 p.m. CST:

Second group of jurors has now entered the courtroom. Peterson greets them and thanks them for their time.

UPDATE 12:00 noon CST:

Twelve jurors picked (7 men and 5 women). Still need to choose four alternates.

UPDATE 11:39 a.m. CST:

A juror from yesterday is upset about missing a family vacation. Judge offers each side one more challenge if they agree to release this juror.

UPDATE 11:15 a.m. CST:

Court goers describe Peterson as looking tidy, clean-shaven, older.

UPDATE 10:45 a.m. CST:

Five juror candidates left over from yesterday have been questioned so far. During break defense tweets that selection is proceeding at a rapid pace.

UPDATE 09:00 a.m. CST:

Court is delayed by a half hour while lawyers obtain new clothing for Peterson. His existing civilian clothes are now too small. Assembled candidates described as less rowdy as yesterday.

Yesterday, after 12 hours of questioning and deliberations, eight jurors were seated for Drew Peterson’s trial for the murder of Kathleen Savio.

Fifty-eight potential jurors are due to report this morning for another round of jury selection.

As always, we’ll have our eyes and ears open and will be posting updates. Check back throughout the day for the latest news and don’t forget to check the comment thread.

Remember, CNN/In Session’s Ted Rowlands will be talking to our own Rescueapet today at 12:15 CST about the blog, the case, etc. Check your local listings for the channel.

We’re following:
Jon Seidel
Joseph Hosey
Craig Wall
In Session


64 thoughts on “Drew Peterson murder trial: Jury selection day 2

  1. Saw Brodsky say in a video interview on tv this morning that a couple of the jurors have “gold stars” after their names because the defense is quite happy with them. That’s so special, isn’t it?

  2. Via Twitter – one seated juror is upset because of a scheduled vacation, so the judge is asking both sides about dismissing him. I would think it doesn’t make sense to alienate him and risk letting him remain on the jury, but who knows. That’s JMO.

  3. So disappointed this trial will not be televised. It seems that more and more cases are not broadcast anymore. 😦

  4. Illinois is sadly behind the times when it comes to transparency. We are already seeing the fallout as in inaccurate reporting about yesterday’s hearing.

  5. JFA – televised trials are now allowed in Illinois, but Will County isn’t up-to-speed yet with doing so. It’s a shame, because it is such a high profile case. Another WC case is the Christopher Vaughn trial that is coming up, where he is accused of killing his wife and children.

    That’s why we have to rely on Insession and reporter tweets. it is what it is, unfortunately.

  6. Sitting in jail on hear say is nuts with a 20 million dollar bail ? But a drunk kills a motorcyclist and gets 7,500 bail ,Will Co is screwed up the horse before the carrage idiots !

  7. This is a terrific site..heard about it this morning on In Session and look forward to seeing opinions….after all we are the thirteenth juror!!!

  8. WillcountyFrank, maybe once the trial actually starts we will have a better understanding of why the bail is set so high. Since there have been multiple attempts to get Mr. Peterson released and all have failed, my guess is there is more to it. As for the drunk driver, I lost 4 members of my family to guy as on his 4th DUI, he served less than 3 years because the judge felt sorry for his family. I know all about it not being fair.

  9. I also saw the interview this morning and wrote down the blog addy. Great interview by the way! Was so glad to be reminded of this blog as I had lost all my good Peterson links when my harddrive was replaced 6 months ago. I used to read here all the time.

  10. Jon Seidel ‏@SeidelContent
    More questions for potential #DrewPeterson jurors. One says she works at a prison, couldn’t send someone there. “I know what happens.”

  11. Wow, that was a stark comment. What does she think should be done with people who kill, mame, rob, or deal drugs, among other things? Send them to day camp?

  12. Did anyone else see Andrew Abood on In Session this morning?

    While he was part of the defense team we didn’t exactly have friendly feelings towards him, but after he withdrew he was very fair to us and helped out with legal questions from time to time. A nice guy.

  13. anxious for the trial to begin and be able to see the facts. Looking forward to sharing info on this site and be able to stop any spin that will undoubtly be used to defend Peterson. Hopefully this jury will turn in a just verdict and we
    will see the system work….

  14. Re:Jon Seidel’s tweet. You’re right on, as usual, Rescue. I just hope it gave Drewpy shudder and made it real for him at last.

  15. The 12 jurors and one alternate selected for the Peterson jury have been identified only by number in court. Their answers to attorney questions provide a few other details. Some of the jurors include:

    A radio broadcasting major at Columbia College who lives with his parents.

    A Lockport man who has been married for 15 years.

    A male plant manager for a printing company.

    A man from Plainfield who once owned a construction company.

    A secretary who describes herself as an “avid poet.” She divorced in the 1990s and wrote on her questionnaire “all divorces are unhappy” in response to a question about the nature of the breakup. She likes to read true crime stories.

    A crossing guard from Lockport who said she likes to read mysteries and usually is able to solve them before the end of the book. Asked if she would try to do the same in the Peterson trial, she responded, “No. You have to wait ‘til the end.”

    A Joliet bus driver who lives with his parents.

    A reader of two daily newspapers who she said she instructed her husband to scan them for news of the Peterson case before she looks at them. “And if there’s anything in them I shouldn’t be reading, he destroys the paper.”

    A New Lenox woman who stated on her questionnaire that she reads the National Enquirer, but when asked whether she believes what’s in the tabloid, she smiled and said, “No.”

    A divorced man who was a law school student for about a year and a half before dropping out.


  16. They have no physical evidence nothing. Its all hear say the state police did repory and questioned family members and none of this was brought up its all BS its because its,DREW plain and simple Will county States Attorney had to make a move and the did. I as m sorry to hear about your family members but how does a guy get a 7,500 bond for killing someone drunk and Drew gets 20 million with no evidence ?? I hope he sues for millions and gets it .

  17. I can’t tell you how ironic I find it that there will be no cameras in the courtroom for the trial after Peterson and his lawyer courted the media non-stop for a year and a half after Stacy disappeared.

  18. Lopez and co-counsel Steve Greenberg did not rule out the possibility that Peterson might take the stand to testify in his own defense, saying, “It’s his decision.”

    But Lopez declined to say whether or not Peterson wants to testify.

    “We can’t talk about that right now because it’s part of the trial strategy.”

    Lopez also said a noticably puffier Peterson has put on so much weight since he’s been jail that the defense team had to scramble to find him roomier pants this morning.

    “Drew couldn’t fit into his pants,” Lopez said. “Maybe too many Cheetos.”


  19. It wasn’t that long ago, I thought, that we were reading how Peterson was exercising in his cell, and lost a bunch of weight. I don’t doubt that he’d gain weight if his meals are plentiful and he’s not getting exercise, a common malady, but he bragged about his transformation, or Brodsky did, and we all had to hear about it. Of course, we’ve heard that Peterson is a rock, and the next moment we we’re hearing he’s down and mad. See, you need a scorecard to keep up with this lead lawyer/murder defendant folderal, or you will lose your place in the Land of Drew Peterson….

  20. Haha, thank you facsmiley! I read an article earlier today about DP being late for court because his pants didn’t fit… and I wondered, too big or too small? Now I know. 🙂

  21. As Drew Peterson faces murder trial in death of third wife, a question lingers: Where is Stacy, wife No. 4?

    Published July 24, 2012

    While an Illinois court moves prepares for the murder case against former police officer Drew Peterson, who is accused of killing his third wife, police are probing his possible role in the disappearance of wife No. 4.

    Peterson, 58, is charged with the 2004 death of his third wife, Kathleen Savio, which was deemed accidental until police began investigating the 2007 disappearance of his fourth wife, Stacy Peterson. With the former suburban Chicago police officer a defendant in one murder case and a suspect in another, Stacy Peterson’s family is convinced of his guilt and confident they will see him tried for her murder.

    “I think in time the case will be resolved and hopefully he’ll go to trial for that too,” said Pam Bosco, a spokeswoman for Stacy Peterson’s family. “They have a dedicated force and are not going to give up until they find out what happened to Stacy,” she said of investigators.

    “He has not been charged because we don’t have a body,” added Stacy Peterson’s aunt, Candace Aikin, “But I believe that things are progressing with the investigation in a good way.”

    During the first day of jury selection Monday, a judge and attorneys removed pool members who saw a TV movie about the case or came to court already convinced he’s guilty.

    Legal experts say the court faces an uphill battle in selecting jurors who have not been subjected to intense media coverage on the case and who have no pre-conceived notions of Peterson’s guilt or innocence.

    “In a high-profile case whose circumstantial allegations are tailor-made for TV — a police officer suspected of murdering multiple wives — jury selection is extremely difficult,” said Mark Bederow, a New York-based criminal defense attorney and former prosecutor.

    “It is virtually impossible to find a person in that community who hasn’t heard of the case and formed some opinion about it,” Bederow told FoxNews.com. “The difficult task for the defense is finding jurors who it truly feels believe in the system — and especially in a circumstantial case — will hold the prosecution to its heavy burden of proof.”

    A full jury was selected Tuesday, including a part-time poet and a man in his 70s who takes flying lessons and who played baseball on his college team.The last members of the panel were selected Tuesday afternoon. Seven men and five women are on the jury. Nine jurors are white, three are African-Americans and one is Hispanic.

    Attorneys have until next Tuesday to prepare their opening statements, and prosecutors are expected to call their first witnesses later that same day.

    In one-by-one questioning, defense attorneys asked prospective jurors if they watched the 2011 cable TV movie starring Rob Lowe as Peterson. They also asked them whether they have been through acrimonious divorces.

    Kathleen Savio’s body was found in a dry bathtub in her home, her hair soaked in blood, just before her divorce settlement with Peterson was to be finalized. He allegedly feared the settlement with the 40-year-old Savio would wipe him out financially.

    Stacy Peterson, Drew Peterson’s fourth wife, disappeared on Oct. 28, 2007. Peterson claims that the 23-year-old mother of two ran off with another man. She has never been found, and investigators have said they believe she is dead.

    Bosco told FoxNews.com that Peterson “would never have left her children.”

    “She was an amazing mom,” Bosco said, adding that Peterson “made many statements expressing her fears about Drew.”

    More than 200 prospective jurors were summoned to hear the long-delayed Peterson case in 2009 and were instructed at the time to meticulously avoid all media coverage about it.

    Most of the 40 potential jurors questioned Monday said they had heard at least snippets of news about Peterson over the three years, but the majority insisted that whatever they heard wouldn’t preclude them from giving him a fair trial.

    Asked if she was able to avoid seeing intense media coverage of the case, one woman later struck from the pool said, “It’s right there in front of you — it’s hard not to (see it).”

    Three people who said they watched the entire TV movie — in apparent violation of court instructions — also were dismissed. One was a professional plumber who said he went out of his way to watch the movie.

    “He looked guilty,” the man said, referring to the conclusion he drew from the movie. In his questionnaire, he also wrote that he spoke to his girlfriend about the movie later.

    “We discussed how he done it,” he wrote, referring to how they thought Peterson had committed the killings.

    Peterson, who shaved his trademark mustache for the trial, has appeared fully engaged in the jury-selection process — studying potential jurors as they answer questions and making suggestions to his attorneys about questions to ask.

    Bederow said Peterson’s involvement in the jury-selection process is typical in a high-profile murder case.

    “It is quite common for a defendant like Peterson to be actively engaged in jury selection,” Bederow said. “He was a police officer for years and has a distinct advantage of knowing the communities from which the jurors will be selected. Additionally, engaging in ordinary social behavior, such as conferencing with his attorney in the presence of jurors, humanizes him, which is especially critical for a defendant accused of violent murders.”

    Aikin, meanwhile, said the Stacy’s Peterson’s unsolved disappearance five years ago has had a devastating impact on the family.

    “Stacy was vivacious and full of energy,” Aikin said. “She was happy and bubbly and loved to be around people.

    “She loved her family. They were No. 1 to her,” she said.

    Read more: http://www.foxnews.com/us/2012/07/24/accused-wife-killer-drew-peterson-murder-trial-may-not-be-his-last/#ixzz21aAbutRl

  22. OMG Rescue you were fantastic, so calm and so to the point. KUDOS to JC for the job you do….Justice for Kathleen and Stacy

  23. We’ve gotten some emails from people today looking for help. I’m not sure that we can do much for them besides pass on their messages:

    I need some help with a case in LaSalle county IL. I have been trying to help get media coverage. The states attorney still wants more evidence that will not come. I am referring to Tracy Cusick case in Ottawa ill. It is almost like the Drew Peterson case in everyway. Her husband is a Ottawa emt, at first it was ruled a drowning in the bathroom toilet, in 2006 she was exhumed and was found a homicide.If you look up the times newspaper Ottawa ill and search tracy cusick and read about it please. You can call me at XXX-XXX-XXXX. Thank you.

    If you think you could help this person, shoot us an email and we will put you in touch.

  24. A Hispanic man in his 20s who studies broadcasting at Columbia College and earlier attended Bolingbrook High School while Kathleen Savio’s oldest son, Tom, also was at the school. His brother serves in the Army, while his parents both work at Will County high schools.

    A Plainfield man who formerly owned a construction company, now works as a consultant and plans to retire Sept. 1. He’s married with two grown children and takes flying lessons.

    A divorced woman in her 50s who works as an office secretary, who once edited her college’s newspaper and describes writing poetry as “a passion.” She also reads mystery novels, true crime books and watches TV cooking programs.

    A woman whose family emigrated from Poland when she was a child. Her favorite TV show is “Dancing with the Stars.”

    A divorced Bolingbrook man in his 40s who works for the U.S. Postal Service, but formerly served in the Army National Guard and attended law school and graduate school.

    A man in his 60s who works as a plant manager for a manufacturing company and rides a Harley-Davidson motorcycle.

    A married woman whose husband first read newspapers to remove articles relating to the Peterson case so she wouldn’t see them. She likes to watch crime-related TV programs.

    A married woman in her 50s who is one of eight children, four of whom are divorced.

    An African-American man from Plainfield who works as a research technician. He is married with two children, doesn’t watch TV news but likes watching “Criminal Minds.”

    A man in his 60s who graduated from Lockport High School and formerly worked for Texaco.

    An African-American man in his 20s who was laid off earlier this year and lives with his parents.

    A married woman in her 60s who is a White Sox fan and whose boss cringed when she heard the woman had been called for jury duty in the Peterson trial. She watches CNN and reads fiction that includes “The Hunger Games” novels.

    The alternate jurors are:

    A woman who is a semi-retired school crossing guard and doesn’t watch TV.

    A divorced man with a graduate degree in education who runs, cycles and swims.

    A man who collects pistols, has an orchard and once was attacked by a bat-wielding robber.

    A divorced man who is fan of the Chicago Cubs and Green Bay Packers and whose son is an aspiring police officer


  25. I’ve been reading about voir dire and it’s interesting what an inexact science it is. An attorney may rail against a potential juror who turns out to be their strongest ally. You just never know…

  26. Drew Peterson carefully appraised every prospective juror who took a seat in a Joliet courtroom Tuesday, then later nodded or shook his head when his attorneys asked whether to fight to keep them…

    …As he did Monday during the first day of jury selection, Peterson stood to greet the second pool Tuesday. He wore a navy sports jacket, a plaid tie and — after the proceedings were delayed briefly so he could get a pair that fit — gray pants.

    “Good day, ladies and gentlemen,” Peterson said after being introduced by his attorney Joel Brodsky. “As they said, my name is Drew Peterson. I’m the defendant in this case. I’d like to take this time to thank you for your time and wish you all a nice day.”…

    …The tension between Glasgow and defense attorney Steve Greenberg flared again at day’s end during a discussion that started over how objections would be handled at trial.

    Glasgow became annoyed when Greenberg mispronounced his last name and then asked Judge Edward Burmila to ban Glasgow from emphasizing his role as the county’s chief prosecutor during opening statements.

    The state’s attorney is appearing in court as the lead attorney on the case.

    “Mr. Glasgow can say, ‘I am the state’s attorney of Will County,'” Greenberg said. “Anything beyond that, Judge, I think is improper.”

    Glasgow responded by saying he wouldn’t engage in “this rambling nonsense” that had happened in other top prosecutors’ opening statements that Greenberg cited.

    “I’m not going to introduce myself (that way),” he told the judge. “I’ll say, ‘I’m Jim Glasgow.'”

    Burmila said he wasn’t going to issue a “road map” for either side to use in opening remarks and tried to get the attorneys to behave a little more politely.

    “We’re done commenting on each others’ comments,” he told the attorneys….


  27. Is this a common thing? I just can’t imagine a bunch of seasoned attorneys turning to the murder defendant for the final thumbs up or down when it comes to jury selection.

    Is it because they are all working pro bono that they cave to Peterson on important decisions? it seems nuts.

  28. Honestly I am shocked. A full jury seated complete with alternates. Wow

    I thought that there would be some quirk of a twist to delay things. But alas it has happened.

    So I ask. Does anyone know anything or see any chance of further delays? Or can this go full steam ahead?

  29. Huh? He’s been there 3 years, and Brodsky is comparing his desire to sleep to his days as a cop? I think someone else needs some sleep to recharge those brain cells.

    …The upshot: “Surprisingly, Drew — who always seems to have a quip — was quipless about the mishap,” said his attorney Joel Brodsky. “All Drew wanted to do after court was get back to his cell and sleep. He’s used to sleeping during the day…just like when he was a cop on the nightshift,” said Brodsky. “He’s exhausted getting used to a court schedule.”


  30. Boy oh boy, it seems like the defense team is so giddy, they sound like they’re vying for a stand-up comedy gig. I hope we never see anything like this group again in any serious crime trial. What a bunch of Bozos. Geesh.

    …Attorney Joel Brodsky said he will be the one handling opening statements for the defense and revealed his plan to tell “the story of Drew Peterson, from beginning to end.”

    And when Brodsky is done with that story, said defense attorney Steve Greenberg, the jury will be convinced that Peterson did not murder his third wife, Kathleen Savio, by hitting her in the head and drowning her in a bathtub.

    “There’s going to be no question she slipped in the tub and Drew was home when it happened,” said Greenberg, who also scoffed at the idea that fresh bruises were discovered on Savio after her body was dug up and re-examined almost four years after her death. Greenberg suggested the bruises may have been caused by gophers bumping into her as they burrowed through her grave.

    Greenberg also predicted that Brodsky’s opening statement will resemble the Gettysburg Address “or some of the other great classics.”


  31. Maybe also recommend the Ottowa person to Websleuths. Alot of great minds over there. Been keeping up with you all here for awhile.

  32. “…Attorney Joel Brodsky said he will be the one handling opening statements for the defense and revealed his plan to tell “the story of Drew Peterson, from beginning to end.”

    I hope the judge puts a time limit on it, or we’ll still be hearing the Drew Peterson story this time next year!

    I thought the same thing about DP getting so involved, Facs, but I read this earlier, and was able to go back and find it.
    From Fox.com:

    Mark Bederow, a New York-based criminal defense attorney and former prosecutor said, “Peterson’s involvement in the jury-selection process is typical in a high-profile murder case.

    “It is quite common for a defendant like Peterson to be actively engaged in jury selection,” Bederow said. “He was a police officer for years and has a distinct advantage of knowing the communities from which the jurors will be selected. Additionally, engaging in ordinary social behavior, such as conferencing with his attorney in the presence of jurors, humanizes him, which is especially critical for a defendant accused of violent murders.”

    Read more: http://www.foxnews.com/us/2012/07/24/accused-wife-killer-drew-peterson-murder-trial-may-not-be-his-last/?test=latestnews#ixzz21bSAdv2n

  33. It may just be me and my belief of things scientific but can a body be bruised after death – years after death? Wouldn’t the body be very decomposed when it was dug up? Would there still be blood in a cell to rupture and show a bruise? Additionally doesn’t an undertaker flush the blood with formaldehyde?

  34. Greenberg suggested the bruises may have been caused by gophers bumping into her as they burrowed through her grave.

    Is this guy for real? I refuse to even comment on such a ridiculous statement.

  35. John, not to be overly detailed and apologies for being graphic but bruises occur in the tissue so they will remain even after the veins and arteries are flushed. Both Baden and Blum noted the bruises on Kathleen’s body even after 4 years in the grave.

    of course, a cadaver can not receive bruises after interment. To even suggest such a thing shows not only a lack of respect for the deceased but the murder case, itself.

    It’s a moronic suggestion.

  36. I’d like to point out another signficant issue. The defense team, lead by Joel Brodsky, can’t stress enough how important it is for the jurors to put aside past media coverage of their client, and to wipe out any preconceptions they have of him from that coverage. The consensus is, Peterson is not a very well thought of or liked individual. The thing is, his lead attorney orchestrated his media blitzes, and now says he had no control over his client and figured if you can’t beam ’em, join ’em. This is Joel Brodsky at his finest:

    5-3-08 In response to readers questioning Joel Brodsky’s handling of the case, Joel provides an exclusive Legal Pub Update.

    Joel: I wish to address the person who says my peers are questioning my handling of the case. So far, in court, I have been successful, getting my client the property taken by the state back (police had to resort to illegally revoking the gun permit to keep Drew from getting the guns). The only criticism I get, and the criminal defense bar is split on this issue, is that I let my client give a total of four (4) controlled interviews, and make a number of sound bite comments on certain issues. The “rule book” in criminal cases is for the client to say nothing. This is what I call the “standard model”. I have given this a great deal of thought, and talked to many other lawyers about this, (including my excellent co-counsel, Andrew Abood of the Abood Law Firm of East Lansing Michigan, and my partner the very sharp Reem Odeh). My conclusion is (and its my decision), that the standard model does not apply in extremely high profile cases in the post O.J. world. The O.J. Simpson trial changed everything. It made and broke big time media careers, and consequentially made the media, and by extension public perception, an additional party in extreme high profile cases. Now, in these rare cases, the media and its influence is in the courtroom and jury room. Therefore, the media must be addressed and engaged in these extreme cases. Examples: (1) Scott Peterson did 3 short tv appearances (I wouldn’t call them interviews) before he was named a suspect and then he remained totally silent. He was convicted. (2) Robert Blake and Michael Jackson both did media interviews. Michael Jackson even produced a TV special on his case to counter some bad publicity, and Blake did an interview from his jail cell without his lawyer present as well as other interviews. Both these men were acquitted. I could go on for a long time on this issue, as well as spell out the problems that my clients media appearances before I came into the case created, and how our media strategy addressed these issues, (one for example which I call the white noise effect), but suffice it to say nothing we do is hap hazzard, or done for publicity or to satisfy some psychological need of my client. A good lawyer thinks like a chess player, looking 5 to 10 moves into the future for each move he does now. I am a good lawyer.
    Posted by Legal Pub at 7:30 AM


  37. Nothing is “done for publicity.” That’s not what Christina Raines said when she got herself engaged to the murder defendant.

    So, one says he’s running a white noise campaign, then says ignore all the pretrial publicity and media coverage of the murder defendant, one calls the seated jury a “killer jury,” and one says gophers were bumping into Kathleen’s body as an explanation for bruises on her exhumed body.

    Beam them all up, Scottie.

  38. Once again, today’s defense thought for the day. I’m sure a lot of research and thought went into that suggestion, and if it’s going to make it into the courtroom testimony, I’m feeling pretty confident the defense’s “killer jury” has never heard of gophers banging into a deceased’s body and bruising it up.

    “There’s going to be no question she slipped in the tub and Drew was home when it happened,” said Greenberg, who also scoffed at the idea that fresh bruises were discovered on Savio after her body was dug up and re-examined almost four years after her death. Greenberg suggested the bruises may have been caused by gophers bumping into her as they burrowed through her grave.

  39. Okay, I’m really disgusted with the defense team’s cocky, arrogant, disrespectful attitude in this case already. Can any of them let someone finish a sentence without cutting others off? Yuck.

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