Listen: secretly recorded Drew Peterson prison conversations

Yesterday the secretly recorded conversations between Drew Peterson and prison snitch Antonio Smith were made public.

The hours of recordings were played in court last month during Peterson’s trial for solicitation of murder and helped the jurors decide to convict Peterson of attempting to put out a hit on State’s Attorney James Glasgow.

Glasgow was the lead prosecutor in Drew Peterson’s 2012 trial for the murder of Peterson’s third wife, Kathleen Savio.

Here are some clips.

Drew Peterson murder-for-hire trial: Day 6 – Prosecution closing arguments

Drew Peterson, James Glasgow and Antonio Smith.

Drew Peterson, James Glasgow and Antonio Smith.

Today is the last day of Peterson’s trial for allegedly attempting to hire a hit man to kill Illinois State’s Attorney, James Glasgow, while incarcerated at Menard Correctional Center in Chester, Illinois.

Closing arguments will be presented by both the prosecution and the defense and then the jury will be given their instructions and left to their deliberations.

Have you taken a look yet at the complete transcripts of the conversations between Drew Peterson and fellow inmate Antonio “Beast” Smith recorded secretly between Nov. 13-29, 2014?

I will update this blog post throughout the morning with information gathered via Twitter and various other sources. To see the latest updates, refresh your page often.

Please check out the links to these hard working journalists at the bottom of this page.

9:15

Cassandra Cales, sister of Stacy Peterson, sitting in court awaiting closing arguments

Drew Peterson has entered the courtroom for closing arguments

Judge giving instructions to jury on closing arguments.

AAG Steve Nate to deliver closing statements for prosecution. RCSA Jeremy Walker to have rebuttal.

Nate: #DrewPeterson received a prison sentence in 2013 “that was basically a death sentence.”

Nate talking about Glasgow being the one person who changed #DrewPeterson’s life. Pauses for effect.

Glasgow responsible for that change

Nate now fiddling with his laptop that’s in the middle of the courtroom. “Best laid plans,” he jokes

Closings now paused to deal with technical difficulties

Nate playing recording of #DrewPeterson sentencing rant.

It was a recording of #DrewPeterson telling Glasgow he orchestrated the “largest railroad job that ever took place in this country.”

Nate: “Make no mistake about it. He hates James Glasgow”

Audio is when Peterson challenged Glasgow to “look him in the eye.” Nate asks jury to consider the hatred in Peterson’s voice.

Nate highlighting Nov. 15 recorded conversation between Peterson and CI Antonio Smith.

“It’s from that hate, from that anger, from that rage that (Peterson) came up with an idea that he thought would solve all his problems.”

Day #DrewPeterson sentenced in 2013 was “the day his life changed forever. He was 59 – it was basically a death sentence for him,” Nate said

Nate now arguing against the defense’s tactic of attacking Smith’s reputation

Nate: Smith didn’t ask for sentence reduction or money until after recordings of #DrewPeterson were made

Nate: You know Smith told the truth “because his testimony is corroborated by the defendant’s own words.”

Nate: #DrewPeterson “can’t get around the recordings, ladies and gentlemen. They can’t get around his own words.”

“Why did the def. spend so much time talking about Antonio Smith and attacking his reputation? Because they can’t get around the recordings”

Nate arguing that the attacks on Smith’s reputation were to distract jury from recordings.

“There was no mistake (Peterson) chose Antonio Smith. He thought he had someone he could manipulate.” – AAG Nate

Nate: #DrewPeterson is the one who picked Antonio Smith

Nate: “It was no mistake that he chose Antonio Smith. He thought he had somebody that he could manipulate.”

Nate talking about how Smith became a protector for Peterson by standing up for him at Menard.

“…despite all the attacks on the character of Mr. Smith, the defendant (is) the one that chose Mr. Smith as a witness…” AAG Nate said.

Nate: #DrewPeterson “kept talking about it. Kept wanting it done.”

Meanwhile, Smith had no intention of having Glasgow killed, Nate says.

“He thought he had this young gang banger who was in for a long sentence for attempted murder, and he thought this is a guy who could get the job done,

“..but he also thot he was a young guy and he thot he could charm him,” Nate said. “But he underestimated Antonio Smith.”

Nate: Will County took minimal role in investigation. It was FBI’s investigation, “not Will County’s.”

Nate: “The FBI and the Will County State’s Attorney’s Office were the only ones who knew about it.”

“You had the opportunity to hear James Glasgow testify. You saw his demeanor when he testified about Drew Peterson.” – AAG Nate

Nate on Glasgow: “Did he strike you as somebody that was obsessed with

Nate: “Who’s obsessed with who? I submit it’s the defendant who’s obsessed with James Glasgow, not the other way around.”

Nate: This case is about “those words that came out of his mouth, the defendant’s mouth.”

Prosecution says Will County States Attorney played minimal role in this murder for hire investigation

Nate: This case is about “those words that came out of his mouth, the defendant’s mouth.”

Nate: #DrewPeterson told Smith “the only way to link me to the whole thing is you.”

“Peterson was counting on Smith being the only one who knew about (the murder plot) and was hoping nobody would believe Antonio Smith.”

Nate: “He was counting on Smith being the only one who knew anything about this.” But #DrewPeterson didn’t know he was being recorded.

“His voice would get lower and more secretive when he talked about James Glasgow” – Prosecution says about #DrewPeterson

Nate acknowledges listening to recordings was “tedious.” Said he knows jury wanted to “throttle” him when he pulled one out.

Nate: #DrewPeterson only talked to Smith on recordings about Glasgow plot. “There’s a reason for that. Because this was real.”

“This was real, this wasn’t just prison talk. He wanted Glasgow dead and because of that, he’s going to limit who he’s going to talk to.”

“If all inmates talk about killing the prosecutor, why is (Peterson) only talking to Antonio Smith about it?” – AAG Nate

Nate playing another recording.

Nate: “There is no doubt about his guilt.”

Nate says recordings confirm that Peterson and Smith talked about hit man plot in 2013.

Nate says jailhouse “kites” — or letters — also confirm that #DrewPeterson and Smith had previous discussions about killing Glasgow

Nate playing conversation when Smith asks Peterson what would happen if Glasgow is gone by Christmas.

(Audio on Nate’s microphone goes out)

Pros play recording where Smith tells #DrewPeterson there “ain’t no turning back.” Then Peterson says they’ll get some booze to celebrate.

Prosecution: Even though Peterson never said “murder” or “kill” in recordings, there is no doubt that’s what he’s talking about.

Nate: “Is there any doubt in your mind what the defendant was talking about?”

Nate: #DrewPeterson believed he would be charged with murder of Stacy Peterson. “This is a real fear that he has.”

Nate talking about how Peterson thought Glasgow would charge him with Stacy Peterson’s disappearance.

Now moving on to Nov. 16 conversations.

Nate: #DrewPeterson talked about getting charged in Will County because that’s where he thought Glasgow’s murder would happen

“it would just be his word against Smith,” Nate sed. “But he was wrong, b/c he was linking himself to the whole thing on the recordings…”

…He was linking himself to the whole thing with his own words.” AAG Nate said

Nate: “You heard the defendant talking about how he’s going to watch the news after Glasgow’s dead.”

Nate: “All these conversations he had about Glasgow being dead prove he’s guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.”

“There is no doubt that he requested Antonio Smith to find someone to kill James Glasgow.” “He said it, he meant it and he’s guilty.”

Nate: #DrewPeterson “assumed the old role of a cop interrogating a suspect” when he became suspicious of Smith.

Nate now playing conversation that includes “Spidey senses” statement.

“Why is he concerned with all that if this was a joke? Why does he care? Because this is real. He wanted James Glasgow killed.”

Prosecution: Peterson’s tone and mannerisms during recordings prove the murder for hire plot wasn’t just a joke, he took it seriously

Nate now beginning to go over the elements of the crimes.

Nate talking about tools jurors will have during deliberations – including common sense, exhibits and juror instructions.

Nate tells jurors it also doesn’t matter that Smith never intended to arrange the hit. The key intent belongs to Peterson

“The law recog. that the intent is (Peterson’s) intent, not Smith’s intent….this crime was complete when the words came out of his mouth.”

Nate to jurors: “No steps had to be taken to kill James Glasgow,” in order for #DrewPeterson to be guilty

“There’s no doubt, ladies and gentlemen, that his intent was to have Glasgow murdered.” – AAG Nate

#DrewPeterson’s arms are crossed as Nate continues his closing — and begins to tell jurors about circumstantial evidence.

Nate comparing a rainstorm to circumstantial evidence.

Nate: #DrewPeterson “has a deep hatred for James Glasgow” and showed it at his February 2013 sentencing

“Why all this paranoia if all of this is a joke?” – AAG Nate

Nate asking jurors to rely on common sense. “There’s no other way to interpret those recordings. He said it, he meant it and he’s guilty.”

Nate is done and jury takes 15-minute mid-morning break.

Twitter:
Pete Spitler – @Editor_RCHT
Matt Walberg – @mattwalberg1
Joe Hosey – @joehosey
North County News – @NCNews_RedBud
Anna Giles – @AnnaGilesWSIL
Jon Seidel – @SeidelContent

Drew Peterson murder-for-hire trial: Will these jailbirds sing?

Drew Peterson has been charged with attempting to arrange the murder of James Glasgow

Drew Peterson has been charged with attempting to arrange the murder of James Glasgow

Drew Peterson’s latest murder trial is slated to begin in less than a month, and the clock is ticking down on deciding who will testify at trial and what kind of evidence will be allowed.

On April 22, Peterson and attorneys for both sides were back in court to argue three motions.

The first motion seeks to limit the impeachment of a former cellmate of Drew Peterson’s, referred to as “Individual A” in court documents, and earlier identified as a man named Antonio Smith, who is rumored to have been released from prison and now living under an assumed identity.

Assistant Attorney General Bill Elward asked to have Smith’s testimony barred, as well as that of four other inmates, Albert Chavez, Jesus Padilla, Glenn Barrett and Shelly McGree, because Peterson’s attorney, Lucas Liefer, had yet to provide the prosecution with copies of the conversation between Peterson and the other men. “We’re trying this case in the dark because we don’t know what Individual A is going to testify at trial” he stated.

albert-chavez

Elward asked where the reports and summaries of these conversations are and Liefer countered that he had a ton of discovery dumped on him at the beginning of April and was overwhelmed, complaining that he had yet to be paid for his representation of Peterson.

shelly-mcgree

Brown gave Liefer until April 26, to come up with summaries of the conversations, but Elward stated that the prosecution wants not only that but also what these witnesses told investigators.

glenn-barrett

Two of the men are still incarcerated at Menard Correctional Center which houses Peterson, while the other two are now housed at Lawrence Correctional Center.

jesus-padilla

The second motion was in regards to the recordings of conversations between Peterson and other inmates in which he allegedly tried to solicit the murder of Illinois State’s attorney James Glasgow.

Liefer argued that some portions of the recordings are inaudible which makes them untrustworthy on the whole, while Elward pointed out that Liefer has had the recordings for over a year and that 96% of the recordings are fine.

Brown agreed to take a look at the transcripts and then decide.

S.A. James Glasgow does not want to appear as witness at Drew Peterson hearing

S.A. James Glasgow

The last motion involved a clarification on an earlier decision regarding allowing James Glasgow to be used as a witness during the prosecution’s opening statements of the trial.

Elward argued that Glasgow will provide background to the jury on the history between Drew Peterson and himself. “He talks about Savio, he talks about Stacy, he talks about his son losing his job, which he blames Glasgow for” Elward said.

Brown agreed to allow the State’s Attorney to speak, but instructed the prosecution to provide Peterson’s defense with a summary of what he intends to say.

A final pre-trial conference is set for May 13.

Sources:

Randolph County Herald Tribune
Illinois Department of Corrections
Judici

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Read the letters from Adrian Gabriel to Joel Brodsky alleging that he plotted to set up Drew Peterson in murder-for-hire charges

adrian-gabriel

UPDATE 2/26/15: Joel Brodsky has tweeted that Adrian Gabriel’s cell was searched by the Department of Corrections yesterday, and the notes he referenced in his letter, allegedly written by Antonio Smith, were seized.
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Here are the letters that Joel Brodsky posted today on his professional Facebook page. In them, inmate Adrian Gabriel alleges that he and another inmate plotted to set up Drew Peterson with solicitation for murder charges while behind bars.

This is the shorter, initial letter that Gabriel refers to in the longer letter above:

OPINION: Having read the letters my response is that one man’s set-up is another man’s sting.

Also, it seems to me that Mr. Gabriel was all for participating in this sting until he realized that he was not going to benefit the way he had hoped. He then turned and tried to appeal to the other side and when Steve Greenberg wouldn’t indulge him, he then turned to Joel Brodsky, who can always be counted on to go to the media and get his face on the air, and simultaneously trash Steve Greenberg.

BTW, there’s no way I can read all that vitriol flung at Greenberg and not suspect that Brodsky is involved in this beyond simply receiving a couple letters. Funny, he didn’t mention in his WGN interview that he also spoke by phone with Gabriel.

Also, how did Gabriel manage to obtain Steve Greenberg’s personal cell phone number?

A new story by Joe Hosey, details the crimes that put Adrian Gabriel behind bars. This is NOT a nice guy:

Brodsky’s pen pal was sent to prison for a 2002 “horrifying anti-homosexual hate crime,” according to a story in the Northwest Indiana Times. At the age of 15, Gabriel and three others held a gay man and a gay teen at gunpoint and forced them to perform a variety of sexual acts, the story said.

According to a story in the Chicago Tribune, Gabriel and his accomplices also made the man perform sex acts on them. The man was then sodomized with a broomstick.

Drew Peterson charged with soliciting the murder of the man who got him convicted

Drew Peterson has been charged with attempting to arrange a hit on States Attorney, James Glasgow (scroll down to read the filing).

According to an ABC 7 story, Peterson tried to hire someone to kill Glasgow between September 2013 and December 2014. They also report:

The former Bolingbrook police officer faces two felony charges: solicitation of murder and solicitation of murder for hire. He appeared in a Randolph County court Monday morning. According to Attorney General Lisa Madigan, several agencies including the Department of Corrections and FBI were involved in the investigation. Her office will prosecute the case, she said, due to complex nature of the investigation and because Glasgow was a target.

Will County State’s Attorney James Glasgow has released the following statement:

This morning I received a copy of the charges that Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan and Randolph County State’s Attorney Jeremy Walker filed against Drew Peterson. I have absolute faith in law enforcement and our criminal justice system to handle this case appropriately. I want to thank Attorney General Madigan and State’s Attorney Walker and their legal teams for their work on this case.

It is unfortunate that prosecutors sometimes must deal with allegations of this nature. However, in no way will a threat to my personal safety deter me from the important work I perform as the State’s Attorney on behalf of the citizens of Will County.

The Chicago Tribune quotes Attorney Steve Greenberg (who represented Peterson at trial and filed his pending appeal), as saying:

“I find it extremely difficult to believe he would do something like this. Drew would have nothing to gain and everything to lose by doing that. He believes he has a strong appeal and that the conviction will be overturned.”

The Tribune also reports that Peterson has asked for a public defender.

As for Greenberg’s assertions that “Jim Glasgow was doing his job and Drew realized that”, here is, in part, what Peterson had to say to the State’s Attorney at his sentencing for murder two years ago:

Mr. Glasgow, all aspects of my life have been destroyed. Everything from my personal life to my professional life to my social life, all aspects have been destroyed, and I tell you this to give you greater cause for celebration when you celebrate the fact that you perpetrated the largest railroad job that ever took place in this country…Throughout these proceedings, no one witness, no one juror, not one prosecutor looked me in the eye until today, and I hope Mr. Glasgow looks me in the eye right now; never forget my face; never forget what you have done here.

When WGN contacted Peterson’s former attorney, Joel Brodsky,did not pass up a chance to take a jab at his former co-counsel:

“When I was representing Drew we did a lot of controversial things, but apparently his new lawyers don’t have control over their client and that’s unfortunate.”

Stacy Peterson’s sister, Cassandra, told the media “The way he is, he thinks he can get away with anything, he’s above the law.”

Although Drew Peterson has been housed in protective custody he has had ample opportunities to socialize with other inmates. One of his female pen pals described his requests that she find pen pals for his fellow inmates and research correspondence courses for them.

In one letter, dated May 2014, he described a strange meeting while outside for his daily exercise.
drew-yard-conversation

He wrote:

“I was approached in the yard today (by a guy) who said I arrested him some years ago. He didn’t look familiar to me and he said I let him keep his gun. Doesn’t sound like something I would do so I think he was full of crap.”

Peterson is due in court again on March 3.

Read the filing:

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