Drew Peterson trial – day fifteen. Pastor Neil Schori on stand. Stacy Peterson “speaks”

UPDATE 03:16:

Court is back in session.
Judge Burmila is back on the bench. He says that the fact that Drew and Stacy’s Nextel phones had a “chirping” feature might be relevant. “My concern, however, is that Mr. Mims may not be the right person to introduce this to the jury . . . if you want to call someone from Nextel, or if the parties want to stipulate, I think that’s all appropriate, and it will be admissible.” Connor: “We would have to produce that witness tomorrow. As far as our witnesses for today, given your rulings, we are at an end of our witnesses.”
The sidebar ends. Judge Burmila announces that he will release the jurors for the day. He wants to have a conference with the attorneys, but that will apparently take place in chambers.

UPDATE 02:00:

Atty Lopez says that the delay is because both sides are hammering out stipulations so prosecutors can rest tomorrow.
Court is now in session.
Defense tries to stop a prosecution investigator from testifying about receipts he found in Drew’s home in 2007.
Brodsky says the state can’t provide evidence of a “false” alibi if defendant hasn’t presented an alibi defense.
Glasgow also says it would back Pachter’s testimony that Drew wanted an ironclad alibi for day of Savio’s death.
Receipts include receipts from Krispy Kreme and the Shedd Aquarium. The receipts were in the only red folder in the drawer.
Prosecutor Connor: “It did not appear from the other items in this file cabinet that he was a compulsive record keeper.”
Burmila says receipts from a Krispy Kreme & Shedd Aquarium are admissible. Receipts were for cash, not credit, and kept in a red folder.
Defense still fighting receipt decision. Glasgow getting animated.
Burmila scolded Glasgow for tone, volume of his voice while stating his case. Glasgow apologized profusely. “It will not happen again.”
Glasgow says Drew Peterson staged scene – complete with OJ on kitchen counter – to make it look like Savio died in morning so kept receipts.
Judge reverses himself, won’t let investigator describe receipts found in Drew’s home that give him alibi for day before Savio.
Court in recess while State decides who to call next. No receipts – no Dave Margliano.

UPDATE 01:30:

Attorney Harry Smith is expected to be the next prosecution witness.

UPDATE 11:30:

“You told the jury that Stacy told you she lived with a murderer?” “Those were not her words, but yes.” “So it was your understanding that Stacy lived with someone who committed a murder?” “Right.” “Of a wife?” “Right.” “And you let her go right back there?” “I didn’t stop her.” “Because you didn’t believe her!” “Not true.”
Lopez finishes on cross. Glasgow begins re-direct
Schori says he did not initially report what Stacy told him because she wanted him to keep it between them.
Schori says he was aware that DP was a police officer. Schori says Stacy asked him not to share the information she gave him with anyone. He complied with her request to maintain “integrity.”
Schori says there was a witness 8-10 ft away during initial mtg w/ Stacy – Marco Macola. Schori said witness sat 8 to 10 feet away and didn’t hear discussion.
Arguments over Schori testifying about coming forward with Stacy’s story in October 2007, the month Stacy disappeared.
Judge: “I think the fact that he told the sergeant in October is appropriate, and it’s admissible.”
Lopez then begins his recross. “You mentioned you needed to bring somebody with you, based on the phone call you received the day before?” “That’s correct.” “You knew she was going to seduce you?” “That’s not correct.”
“When Mr. Glasgow was asking you about you not telling anybody, do you remember that?” “I do.” “Did you appear on a radio show…” Objection/Sustained. That ends the testimony of Rev. Schori, and he is excused from the stand. The judge excuses the jurors for the lunch recess.

UPDATE 11:07:

State ends questioning Schori. Lopez begins cross.
Lopez: “Are you telling us that you engage in marriage counseling with people in public places? Schori: “Absolutely.”
Lopez: You thought it would be better to embarrass your people by having them cry in public.
Schori says he didn’t take notes during SP meeting. “I never take notes.”
Upon questioning, Schori says he didn’t follow-up with Stacy or confirm details with Drew Peterson after initial meeting.
Schori also says he didn’t send any anonymous letters to authorities, news organizations with info SP gave him.
“You didn’t tell anybody about it?” “That’s correct.” “In fact, you were sitting on a grand jury?” “That’s correct.” “Did you speak to somebody in August?” “No.” “September?” “No.” “You didn’t speak to anybody until October?” “That is correct.”
“She also told you that Drew told her that he killed his own men when he was in the Army?” “That is correct.”
Coughing juror is causing a disruption. Jury leaves room.

UPDATE 10:57:

Neil Schori

The prosecution calls Neil Schori to the stand.
Schori says he met Drew and Stacy Peterson at the end of 2005 or beginning of 2006 at Westbrook Christian Church in Bolingbrook.
Schori says his job was to get newcomers acclimated to the church, when he met Stacy and Drew Peterson.
Schori said he received phone call rom Stacy Peterson in Aug. 2007. He met her at a Starbucks the morning after that call.
Schori provided all counseling sessions a public coffee shops because he did not want any suggestions of impropriety with congregants.
Schori: “Stacy appeared to be nervous, tentative, she was sitting alone…I approached and greeted her.”
Schori said SP “silently cried,” indicated she had something to tell him.
Schori says SP told him that one night she and DP went to sleep at the same time. She later awoke and DP wasn’t there.
Schori: SP later saw Drew downstairs, wearing black. He was carrying bag. He put contents of bag into washing machine.
Schori: When DP walked away, Stacy looked inside washer and saw woman’s clothes that weren’t hers.
Schori: SP said DP later told her that police would want to interview her. DP told her what to say.
Schori says Stacy claimed Drew Peterson coached her for hours on what to say to police. A tearful Stacy said she lied to police, he said.
Schori: “She continued to cry. She was very scared,” in retelling tale.

UPDATE 10:26:

Judge says state mislead him about Schori testimony after reviewing transcripts. State still disagrees.
Statement “it’s a perfect crime,” which DP allegedly said to SP, according to Schori, is inadmissible. Prosecution asking judge to reconsider.
Judge: “So with that as our starting point, where are we with the request that I evaluate Rev. Schori’s testimony.”
Prosecutor Griffin: “This was referred to over and over again before Judge White and Your Honor as ‘the lie request’.”
Judge: “Where are we at, then? I’ve made a ruling that he cannot say she said this was going to be the perfect crime.
Judge: “You’re asking me to admit a statement she made to Rev. Schori that she fulfilled the defendant’s wish?”
Griffin: “Yes, without getting into the actual statement that she made to the police.
Judge doesn’t change his prior ruling – statements that Drew Peterson made, with Stacy’s alibi it’d be “the perfect crime” not admissible
The judge will allow state to present that Drew Peterson advised Stacy to lie to police for him, and that she did.
They continue to argue.
Judge Burmila: “The State’s argument is that statement was barred by Judge White as privileged, and that explains the link you now say doesn’t exist . . . the Court’s observations you read from the transcript were in advance of the trial. The issue here is whether or not there’s any testimony presented to this jury that could allow for the inference the State is trying to make . . . but there is some indication that the jury could believe this act happened sometime between midnight Saturday and the time that she was found . . . taking all of that into account, the jury would be able to draw the inferences that the clothing the defendant had with him, if they believe Stacy Peterson’s hearsay statement, could have come from the victim’s home. So that [defense] objection will be overruled.
SA Glasgow asks for a few minutes to talk to Neil Schori. Court is in recess.

UPDATE 9:28:

Attorneys in courtroom. Just waiting on the Judge.
Rumor is jurors will be wearing gray today.
Court is in session. Jury coming in.
Pastor Neil Schori expected to take the stand first today for prosecution.
Attorney Brodsky notes that there are issues of marital and clerical privilege at play with Schori.
Glasgow wants Schori to testify, but parts of his story are not admissible.
Judge: “I don’t think we addressed the issue of ‘no one will ever know’ [which Drew allegedly told Stacy].”
Glasgow claims that “my hands are tied,” based on the judge’s prior rulings. “We have a right to have this witness tell the gist of what he was told . . . the words ‘perfect crime’ were used . . . he [the defendant] coached her for hours.”
Judge: “We’ve revisited this on a number of occasions . . . the issue is what is legally admissible, not what makes the State’s case better, or what makes the witness more believable . . . I was told that the testimony was going to be that she was told to lie. ‘This will be the perfect crime’ is covered by marital privilege. I didn’t make up marital privilege . . . now you’re telling me that’s not really what the statement was. I guess we have to backtrack: did Rev. Schori say that Stacy Peterson told him that she was told to lie to the police?”
Judge left bench, demanding transcript of pre-trial hearing so he can see exactly what prosecution told him.
Court in recess.
BTW: Jeff Ruby mouthed “F— Y–” to Drew Peterson in court. sheriff: “There was direct eye contact made.” Ruby was escorted out of the building and is barred from the trial.
Glasgow: “Judge “we are walking on egg shells”. State is to the point where based on prior missteps they are navigating a mistrial minefield.
The parties are heading back into the courtroom. We should be resuming shortly.

Drew Peterson’s trial for the murder of Kathleen Savio continues today. Yesterday the prosecution managed to put four witnesses on the stand: Jeffrey Pachter, Bryan Falat, Dr. Vinod Motiani, and Nick Pontarelli.

As always, I’ll have my 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 comments thread.

We’re following:
Jon Seidel
Stacy St. Clair
In Session
Glenn Marshall
Diane Pathieu
Kara Oko
Dan Rozek
Diane Pathieu

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68 thoughts on “Drew Peterson trial – day fifteen. Pastor Neil Schori on stand. Stacy Peterson “speaks”

  1. Hey there, everyone! I just spent the morning here in Sarajevo getting caught up on yesterday’s testimony and the comments from the thread. I agree that things seem to be going more smoothly in the last 24 hours. I think all of the witnesses did a great job, but I still have some questions about the testimony of the neighbor’s son saying that Steve and Stacy were at the house and about the light being either on or off. I hope those issues will be clarified as things proceed.

    Also, on another note, I saw that Natalie Wood’s death investigation has been reopened recently, and that authorities have removed the word “accidental” from her death certificate. http://www.cnn.com/2012/08/22/showbiz/natalie-wood-probe/index.html?hpt=ju_c2. It just caught my eye and thought I’d share, because it is another example of a death being as an ruled accidental drowning, then reopened and ammended at a much later time, in Wood’s case, to include new evidence and testimony from witnesses. Please note in the story the issues of several bruises all over her body and what she was dressed in when she was found. It’s not as suspicious as being found in a dry bathtub, but there is certainly much more to this story than we know/have been told in the past.

  2. Good day yesterday. I wanted to say that I didn’t think that the “hitman” guy’s past was so scary. An 18 year old guy dating a 15 year old girl, no big deal. A gambling problem and income tax evasion…he could be a banker or run for president these days.

  3. Another point Carol, is that if Peterson was looking for someone to do a hit on his wife what kind of person would he approach? Not some squeaky clean characater.

    Historically, Peterson relied on less-than-savory folks to do his dirty work.. It could be due to his work but he does seem to surround himself with a fair amount of street rats.

  4. Let’s hope that there’s a new pattern in that courtroom and we see several witnesses take the stand again!

  5. From Michael (or should I say Michelle?) Sneed today.

    Drew’s letter bin . . .

    Sneed is told accused wife murderer Drew Peterson has received a pile of “love letters” since his trial began in Will County several weeks ago.

    ◆ Go figure: “The love and friendship letters are primarily from women . . . approximately 90 percent,” said Peterson’s attorney Joel Brodsky. “Most are from women who want to meet him.”

    ◆ Peterson, the jailed former Bolingbrook cop, gets “nine letters a day” doled out to him at the jail, but he’s been told jail administrators are “holding a truckload,” Brodsky tells Sneed.

    ◆ Incoming: Sneed hears jail guards were surprised and hesitant at first to give Peterson the incoming pile of letters.

    ◆ Background: Peterson, who has been in jail awaiting trial for the past three years for the murder of his third wife, Kathleen Savio — the mother of two of his six children — initially received letters from love-struck women convinced of his innocence — but the river of mail dried up over the last year. Even his ex-girlfriend stopped visiting him.

    ◆ Candyland: Meanwhile, Sneed has learned Peterson gave permission to “Aunt Candy”— the California-based aunt of his missing fourth wife, Stacy Peterson, to take his two youngest children, Lacy and Anthony for a “weekend holiday” at a local motel recently. “The kids had a great time,” said Brodsky, who added “Aunt Candy”— whose full name is Candace Aikin — was in town as a possible trial witness for the prosecution — but wound up not being called.

  6. Personally, my gut feeling is that Jeff Ruby is more about selling steaks than anything else. I know some people disagree.

    I’m just not down with the ads having his restaurant’s logo plastered on them; he shows up in his humungous Jeff Ruby bus and parks it in downtown Joliet. Just rubs me the wrong way.

    If you’ve watched his chats with the defense team on Twitter, he’s quite friendly with them all.

  7. If they’d tell Peterson not to make eye contact with gallery, there would never be a problem. Keep eyes straight ahead like any other defendant.

  8. The coughing juror needs to get himself an asthma inhaler…presume its the same one as last time.which led court to an early finish.

    Shame it happened during Schori…gives the Defense more time to prepare its cross for this critical witness

  9. “SP told him that one night she and DP went to sleep at the same time. She later awoke and DP wasn’t there.
    Schori: SP later saw Drew downstairs, wearing black. He was carrying bag. He put contents of bag into washing machine.
    Schori: When DP walked away, Stacy looked inside washer and saw woman’s clothes that weren’t hers.
    Schori: SP said DP later told her that police would want to interview her. DP told her what to say……
    “So it was your understanding that Stacy lived with someone who committed a murder?” “Right.” “Of a wife?” “Right.”

    Compelling testimony from a man of the cloth with unimpeachable integrity on behalf of a mysteriously absent 4th wife. (The defense’s clumsy effort to suggest she was going to seduce him was pathetic…seeing as he went out of his way to say he always meets in public )

    Add this to extensive testimony already heard about Drew’s pattern of serial wife abuse; his m.o….wearing black, choke holds etc, …and if i was a juror i’d be starting to think that Drew Peterson has some serious explaining to do…and i’d be looking forward to hearing his side of the story.

  10. Joel Brodsky was on IS suggesting that Neil Schori lied about what he knew to further his career as a domestic violence expert. (which only came about because of this experience and after he met and joined forces with Susan Murphy Milano). Very clumsy attempt at an attack.

    Plus, if the defense wants the jury’s attention they really need to make up their minds. Was Stacy lying to Neil Schori, or is Schori lying about the whole thing? Everyone can’t be lying. The jury ain’t dumb.

  11. @ Fac….we feel your pain…and appreciate your effort

    BTW, I thought that Nick would be back on the stand this a,m….yesterday’s IS transcript left me with the impression that the court adjourned mid-cross. Can you shed any light on this…(pun intended)

  12. Oxy – I don’t know what happened there. I might have missed a final update for the day or else they decided at sidebar not to pursue the questioning any further. IIRC, they were doing the re-cross, so maybe just ended there.

  13. Wow…so the prosecution’s case will be over by tomorrow.

    I have one open concern,…which I sure hope the prosecution can address before the they rest.

    If i was a juror …given the compelling evidence of motive, serial wife-beating, confession to his 4th wife … I could live with a lack of forensics placing Pearson in the bathroom,..but the one thing I would need to convict would be a plausible theory…(with some corroboration) …as to how Peterson pulled off the crime.

    In other words…when and how did he enter the house?…where did he likely attack Stacey?…what did he do to inflict the various wounds? and then what did he do to stage the crime scene?

    I hope in the remaining one and a half days we’re going to hear more evidence that will be used to support whatever theory the prosecution will be articulating when it pulls it all together in its closing argument.

  14. Well, I brought the popcorn for this afternoon, but it’s almost cold, now. Get some while it’s warm… :>(
    Facs, we’ll cross our fingers for you, to give yours a rest.
    Everybody scootch over, though. Looks like the show is finally beginning to start, and I know we all want front row seats for this one.

  15. I can’t believe their actually going to be finishing tomorrow (per Lopez). I would think they would want to end with a huge witness and end with a bang. It sounds like it may end with a whimper.
    Also, I heard they may hold Jeff Ruby in contempt of court for the incident this morning.

  16. Gah, I can’t believe the judge barred the receipts.

    They didn’t speak to the time of day that state said Savio died, but they DID speak to the time of day that Drew was trying to make people think she did – morning.

  17. @ Fac …i thought the final update at 2pm was

    Burmilla says receipts from a Krispy Kreme & Shedd Aquarium are admissible.

  18. @ Fac…do you remember any testimony to address the issue of how did Drew gain access to the house of a woman who witnesses have told us lived in fear for her life and had installed 3 dead bolts.

    Also what happened to Stacy’s knife that an earlier witness stated she kept under the bed? .

    How come no-one found that knife in the aftermath? Wonder if Drew could have used it as a blunt instrument to create the would to the head to stage the accident scene?

  19. Glasgow should have stopped while he was ahead. In most trials, the closing arguments are usually pleas for conviction or release. This prosecution closing had better find a way to knit all of the admitted evidence into something resembling something, or the defense will bury them in pulling the wool over everbody’s eyes!

  20. 1. There was testimony that he had used a garage door opener to access the house and harass Kathleen. Also testimony that when locksmith opened the door, the only lock in place was the deadbolt. Screen door unlocked, regular door lock not done, etc. They weren’t allowed to show the hole Drew had cut between garage and dining room to access house once before (and admitted to making).

    2. You mean the knife Kathleen kept between her mattresses? One person testified about Kathleen showing it to her once.

    Do you know that no one found Kathleen’s knife? If it was still between her mattresses then it’s not important, and if it’s not between the mattresses no one would have any idea when it was removed or by who.

    I think you’re grasping at straws to suggest that particular knife was used to make a blunt wound to her head. A blunt force injury is more like being hit with a police baton or a bat. Why even connect that knife to her injury? I’d guess that the can of carpet cleaner would be more likely, and I wouldn’t even guess that. 😉

    As usual, I don’t like to speculate about what ifs, and could it be’s…because we could do that until the cows come home and be nowehere nearer the truth once they ‘re in the barn.

  21. Well on the positive side, the jury only heard from one witness today…but he did a great job in representing Stacey and confirming in straight forward English, that Drew confessed to murdering Kathy and that she saw him come home dressed in black and put what must have been Kathy’s cloths in the washer. IMO, the defense never laid a glove on the Pastor

    On the less positive side, we now know we have less than 8 hours of prosecution testimony to go…and I am concerned that the jury still does not know how the perp entered the home of a woman who actively took steps to lock doors with deadbolts;,even kept a knife in her room for protection; staged a crime and exited without leaving a trail around the house. Where did the perp park his get-away car to avoid detection?

    Nor has it yet been explained how the perp knew Kathy was alone…as opposed to with her boyfriend.

    In summary my concern is that the prosecution has been so preoccupied with

    1) establishing that this was no accident…Blum and Case testified for around four of the days…

    2)arguing about admissability of evidence and/or sanctions for prosecution missteps…(around 5 of the remaining days).

    3) establishing motive

    this has left little time for the traditional mainstays of jury convictions….you know the ones you find if the Board Game Clue….it was Drew Peterson, with the toilet bowl and the police night stick in the bathroom.

    I think today the Pastor went a long way to confirming ithat the perp was Drew Peterson, and lets hope tomorrow we start to learn more about the how when and wheres.

  22. Well, Il agree it’s not a nice fat linear case detailing the events of that weekend, and that’s the weak part.

    I think the prosecution did a good job of showing that the death wasn’t accidental and that Kathleen was afraid of Drew. Also that Drew was motivated to want her dead and had talked about it with people, either jokingly or seriously. I wish they could have shown better how he profited from her death but the jury did hear some about the pension and the value of the house.

    They’ve heard what Stacy told one person about that night. I wish Peterson had seen fit to tell her how he got in the house and left because that would have been really helpful but no doubt he didn’t even want it in her head. All he wanted her to be thinking of was that he was home and in bed with her.

    If I were on the jury I think I’d have some strong suspicions at this point, but maybe not enough to convict. 😦

  23. I’ve read the updates on today’s testimony and watched Greta’s interview with Pastor Schori from way back in 2007. I remember that interview, and I’m as impressed today as I was back then on Pastor Schori’s apparent sincerity. He doesn’t impress me as someone trying to insert themselves into a situation or trying to sensationalize the situation.

    Pastor Schori was in a situation, as a minister, of being privy to information that the authorities needed to know. As I recall, Pastor Schori came forward about three or four weeks after Stacy disappeared. At that time, I remember him saying something to the effect that he had given it time for Stacy to be found, but given the passage of time he had come to the conclusion that she wasn’t going to be found. I think he knew in his heart that she was deceased as soon as some of the details of her disappearance emerged.

    I think Pastor Schori did well in his testimony today. He was allowed to testify to the most important parts of what Stacy told him. He was allowed to say that Stacy told him that she lied about Drew’s whereabouts on the night Kathleen died, and the fact that when he came home he was dressed in black and put woman’s clothing in the washing machine.

    From the jury’s point of view, Pastor Schori’s testimony, coupled with the testimony from Jeffrey Pachter, should be persuasive! But when you factor in all the bits and pieces from other witnesses, it’s the accumulation of circumstantial evidence that will get a conviction. The prosecution needs to tie all these bits and pieces together in the closing argument to the jury……….”who placed the blue towel on the side of the bathtub”, “who turned out the lights”, etc and tie it in with the testimony of Jefrrey Pachter and Pastor Schori.

    The one thing that Pastor Schori said today that was news to me was Drew telling Staci he killed his own men when he was in the army.

    A question………..it was mentioned that there was a witness to the meeting between Pastor Schori and Stacy, a man named Marco Macola, who sat 8 – 10 feet away and didn’t hear the conversation. Does anyone know who this is? I have the impression that this man was someone Pastor Schori had brought along as an observer.

    Also, I’m left with the impression that Stacy told Pastor Schori a lot more than what he told Greta, and certainly a lot more than what he testified to today.

    It would appear that the prosecution expects to finish their case in chief tomorrow with one more witness. Then the defense will present their case. If they’re going to begin on Monday, it’s possible that this case will go to the jury next weekend, or sometime the following week.

  24. facsmiley
    August 23, 2012 at 9:17 am

    I’m just hoping that Schori actually gets to sit down for 5 minute today and tell what Stacy told him. I would be happy with that.

    My comment…………………

    After re-watching that video of Pastor Schori’s interview with Greta from 2007, I have the impression that Stacy told Pastor Schori a whole lot more than what he revealed to Greta, and certainly more than he was allowed to state today.

    I’m hoping that sometime in the near future, after this trial, someone will write a book on this case and interview Pastor Schori, at which time he will elaborate on all that she said.

  25. A question………..it was mentioned that there was a witness to the meeting between Pastor Schori and Stacy, a man named Marco Macola, who sat 8 – 10 feet away and didn’t hear the conversation. Does anyone know who this is? I have the impression that this man was someone Pastor Schori had brought along as an observer.

    Comment by Tom Schori
    December 19th, 2007 at 12:15 am

    To the best of my knowledge, the vast majority of Neil’s counseling sessions have taken place in full view (not in a private office) right there in Bolingbrook–either at Starbucks or Caribou. His friend church, Marco, was even there at the coffee shop observing on that fatefull day last August for the simple reason that he would be alone with a young woman.

    Neil has amazing wisdom.

    Tom Schori, Ph.D.
    Normal IL

  26. Pastor: Stacy Peterson said she lived with a murderer

    Posted: Aug 23, 2012 8:40 AM CDT
    By Craig Wall, FOX Chicago News reporter

    The pastor of Drew Peterson’s fourth wife, Stacy, testified in the former Bolingbrook police officer’s murder trial Thursday. Rev. Neil Schori’s testimony is critical to the prosecution’s case.

    Schori dropped a bombshell during cross-examination Thursday: Stacy Peterson told him she lived with a murderer.

    Judge Edward Burmila cleared Schori to testify Thursday, after saying the prosecution mislead him on the content of Schori’s statements and stopping court.
    Peterson has pleaded not guilty to killing his third wife, Kathleen Savio, in 2004. He was charged in Savio’s death in 2009, after his fourth wife – Stacy Peterson – disappeared in 2007.
    Schori was the first witness to provide hearsay evidence based on Stacy Peterson’s words, which he has presented in previous hearings.

    Prosecutors told the judge that Schori would speak to how the 23-year-old told him her husband came back home the night of Kathleen Savio’s death and told her “to lie” for him. But that sentiment may have actually been inferred from the statement “this will be the perfect crime.”

    After Judge Burmila reviewed transcripts from earlier hearings, he allowed Schori to take the stand, but restricted him to marital privilege.

    The judge allowed Schori to say that Peterson told Stacy to lie, and that she saw him come home with a bag of women’s clothing that did not belong to her.

    Rev. Neil Schori testified Thursday about a conversation they had on August 31, 2007 at the Starbucks near her home in Bolingbrook.

    When Schori arrived between 8:30 and 9:00 a.m., Stacy was already sitting outside the coffee shop on the patio.
    “She appeared to be nervous, tentative,” Schori said. “She was sitting alone.”

    During the course of a 1 ½ – 2 hour conversation, she withdrew physically, “pulling her leg up and hugging it.”
    “She silently cried,” Schori said. “She had tears streaming down her cheeks.”

    “One night she and Drew went to bed at the same time,” Schori said, referring indirectly to the night Kathleen Savio died, as he recounted his conversation with Stacy Peterson. “She woke up in the middle of the night and noticed Drew was not in the bed with her.”

    She looked around the house and couldn’t find him, called his cell phone several times and couldn’t reach him.

    “In the early morning hours,” Schori said, “she saw him standing by the washer and dryer… and she saw him dressed all in black and carrying a bag.”

    He removed his clothing and took out the contents of the bag and put it all in the washing machine. Stacy looked in the washing machine and told Schori that “she saw women’s clothing the she identified as not hers.”
    The pastor testified that Peterson told her that if anyone asked where he was that night, to tell them he was with her. Peterson coached her “for hours” on what to say.

    “Soon the police would be wanting to sit down and talk to her,” Schori said as he recalled what Stacy told him, “and he told her what to say to the police.”

    “She said that she lied to police,” Schori said.

    During defense attorney Joe Lopez’s cross-examination, Schori said he did not know what Stacy wanted to talk to him about when she called him to set up the meeting the day before.

    Schori said he brought a friend along, who sat about eight feet away to watch – for the sake of Schori’s integrity – so the pastor wouldn’t be accused of anything improper.

    Lopez accused Schori of trying to embarrass Stacy by holding the meeting in a public place. Schori said Stacy was not embarrassed.

    Although Lopez questioned him about his previous testimony where he conceded Stacy might not have been telling him the truth, Schori told the jury Thursday morning that he believed Stacy
    Peterson told him the truth.

    Lopez asked Schori if he had ever told anyone about this before he went to police in October 2007. Schori said he did not.

    “I told her I would do what she asked me to do,” Schori said. “Not tell anyone.”

    The reverend also admitted he did not give Stacy any advice about what to do.

    As Lopez continued to try and undermine Schori’s integrity, Lopez made the first big blunder for the defense.

    “You let her go back to a home with a murderer?” Lopez defiantly asked Schori.

    Stacy Peterson’s former pastor said those were not his words. Schori said “that’s not my job” – to stop her from going home to her husband.

    Twice more Lopez pressed the of Stacy living with a murderer, at which point Schori testified to something he never would have been able to say during his direct examination by prosecutors.

    Schori said Stacy told him “she lived with someone who had murdered someone.”

    Lopez pressed Schori about letting Stacy go home to such a situation.

    “I didn’t stop her,” Schori said.

    “Because you didn’t believe her?” Lopez shot back.

    “Not true,” Schori answered.

    The jurors took detailed notes while Rev. Neil Schori was on the stand Thursday.


  27. Thanks Facsmiley!

    Neil does have amazing wisdom, indeed! He’s a good-looking young man and I’m sure concerned about the suggestion of meeting with a young woman alone.

    His concern was about propriety, and that prompted having an observer nearby in all his counseling sessions with young women.

    Little did he know that having an observer on that day when he met with Stacy, that observer would be a witness to a conversation which would later prove to be pivotal in a murder investigation! If needed, that observer could testify that the conversation took place.

  28. “She also told you that Drew told her that he killed his own men when he was in the Army?” “That is correct.”

    How peculiar that bit of ‘hearsay” was allowed in as it has absolutely no relevance to anything to do with Kathleens death – a possible prior bad act 30 or so years ago (!) and maybe Drew was bragging, bignoting; no way knowing if any of that was true, yet the Judge has hissy-fits over many statements that ARE relevant and bars them.

    Doesn’t make sense …..

  29. I don’t think much of Craig Wall’s headline. Schori did not say that Stacy lived with a murderer. Lopez fed him that line and Schori corrected him.

    Not only that but Lopez called his own client a murderer, not once but twice.

    Schori says he met Stacy in public “for reasons of integrity.”

    He justifies not telling anyone about what she told him because “I believed that I should do what she wanted me to do.”

    Lopez: “She said, ‘I live with a murderer’?”

    Schori: “Yes.”

    Lopez: “And you let her go back there? You didn’t stop her?”

    Schori: “It’s not my job to stop people.”

    Lopez: “You told the jury that Stacy told you she lived with a murderer?”

    Schori: “Those were not her words, but yes.”

    Lopez: “So it was your understanding that Stacy lived with someone who committed a murder?”

    Schori: “Right.”

    Lopez: “Of a wife?”

    Schori: “Right.”

    Lopez: “And you let her go right back there?”

    Schori “I didn’t stop her.”

    Lopez: “Because you didn’t believe her!”

    Schori: “Not true.”

  30. JAH, I think the defense put it out there because it seems absurd and they were hoping the jury would think that she was just making stuff up. It may have backfired tho.

  31. So what? Judge gets mad and isn’t going to allow the receipts in just because Glasgow said something in a way he didn’t like? He first rules he can then reverses it? This judge is something else! I hope ALL you Will County residents are watching all this and make sure you DO NOT vote for this judge in the coming elections! I have never seen a judge behave, and rule the way this one does!

  32. Judge to prosecutor Connor: “How many witnesses will you have available tomorrow?” Connor: “We should be in a position to rest tomorrow morning…

    Wow… not even a full day of testimony to go for the prosecution…we’re talking about at most about another 3 hours of testimony..i thought.

    Hope the final witnesses talk fast!

  33. Lopez just tweeted that Shori was not much of a witness after cross? Not sure what land he lives in, but it must be the “I am a good lawyer” land, since I thought he was a great witness, and it was a good day for the pros. Not so much for the sunglassed ones. But, Pats one the backs of all around, right, Mr. Lopez? Silly boys

  34. Didn’t the receipts show Drew’s alibi for that weekend according to his DT? If not allowed in then no alibi?

  35. To quote Lori Taylor:
    “I hope ALL you Will County residents are watching all this and make sure you DO NOT vote for this judge in the coming elections! I have never seen a judge behave, and rule the way this one does!”

    And just to reiterate, please, please, please, do NOT let this judge preside over any other cases involving suspicious deaths that include domestic violence/spousal abuse.

    Sounds like the pastor did alright on the witness stand. It will be interesting to see if the pros rests tomorrow and on what note they are able to end, given that Burmilla seems to have a different bug up his ass every single day. Maybe he should eat more fiber for breakfast so that his legal determinacy regulates itself.

  36. Noway – the way the defense argued to the Judge is that they aren’t presenting an alibi for Drew since they maintain that Kathleen’s death was an accident and therefore false-alibi evidence shouldn’t be admissible.

    Prosecution argued that when Jeff Pachter testified about Drew’s statement that he wanted to stage a fight at Six Flags in order to establish an alibi, so at that time it was then introduced and they could build upon it.

    Eventually Burmila sided with the Defense (I hope not just because Glasgow got loud).

    Anyone remember when Andrew Abood and George Lenard left Drew’s defense team. Partly it was over whether or not the team should present an alibi defense. (At least that’s what Lopez said. I kind of think that they just couldn’t stand working with Joel.)

    Lenard and Abood wanted to establish an alibi for Drew while Brodsky wanted to argue strictly that Kathleen’s death was accidental and not establish an alibi.

  37. I guess that means that Tom and Kris Peterson won’t be testifying then.

    LA, from what I’ve heard, Schori was fine during cross. Lopez was the dummy who called his own client a ‘murderer’.

  38. I honestly don’t think they can offer an alibi at this point now that false alibi evidence has been barred, or if they do then the State will get a second crack at putting Margliano up to talk about the receipts.

    They can’t have it both ways.

    Noway – you put such a cute head on me! I mean the dogs and cats are nice and all but…

  39. In video on NBC5, they said that the receipts were found along with a news clipping of Savio’s death. In the same folder? I guess it’s moot now but I had never heard that before.


    Divorce attorney Harry Smith was expected to testify about conversations he had with Drew Peterson’s ex-wife before her 2004 drowning death. But calling Smith was a big gamble the prosecution ultimately decided not to take.


  40. I know that most don’t agree with me on this but I just want to point out that I was called “hater” on In Session, but I know better than to go into a courtroom, stare down the defendant, mouth obscenities and make kissy faces at him.

    I think Jeff Ruby is tacky and is using this case to advertise his restaurants. First he called the defense team the 3 stooges in an ad with his logo on it, then he’s cozying up to Lopez on Twitter. Next he’s accusing Greenberg and his son of leaving threatening messages on his phone, the next day they are both great guys. Now he’s praising Lopez and Greenberg, but Brodsky is a Putz because he’s the one who said he wanted Ruby out of the courtroom after Drew complained.

    If he wants to help out the Savios and the Cales then he could just donate to a women’s shelter or ask the families what he can do for them…without advertising his steakhouses. I’m sorry to be so negative and this is just my personal opinion but I don’t think much of him or his actions.

    The day I park a Justice Cafe tour bus in downtown Joliet and flash my pinky ring on camera, you can all call me out.

  41. What about Paula, Lenny, and the tapes of Drew saying things? Did I miss those being rejected as being admissible?

  42. I don’t understand that. No matter how bad Lenny and Paula’s credibility would be – it would sure seem to me that if the Prosecution played the tapes with the comments that they had reported was on them it would be very compelling for the jury. It just really doesn’t seem like the Prosecution provided enough evidence yet to me. If it weren’t for the long breaks – it would probably only have been a couple of days of testimony. I realize a lot was blocked but do see that many things did get it – like Schori’s testimony. It just frustrates me that the Defense can imply he waited so long yet no one can say why he came forward. I wish they could give ALL of the information to the jury and let them decide. I mean – in reality juries have to decide things like whether or not to believe very prejudicial testimony from people who may benefit from pointing the finger at someone else all the time and they don’t always convict the person. IDK – Have only been watching from afar for the trial. Just cannot imagine being either Kathleen or Stacy’s loved ones – has to be horribly frustrating with what isn’t being allowed in. The benefit is all given to the defendant yet their loved ones are dragged through the mud as a defense. Sigh…

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