In a case that captivated the nation since 2007, former Chicago police officer Drew Peterson has been convicted in the murder of his third wife, Kathleen Savio.
The landmark case is set to generate even more buzz now, since the prosecution based the trial on witness statements called “secondary hearsay”. Drew’s Law (which came about from the Peterson case) allows secondary hearsay admissible in an Illinois courtroom. The law allowed testimony from family and friends of Kathleen Savio and Stacy Peterson (Drew’s fourth wife who went missing in 2007) to testify on their behalf.
Though no charges have been filed against Drew in the disappearance of his fourth wife, he is believe to have killed her because she could ID him as his third wife’s killer. Drew maintains she is alive and ran off with another man, though she has not been seen or heard from since her disappearance five years ago.
The trial was the first of its kind in Illinois history, and the defence team is expected to appeal on grounds that hearsay law is unconstitutional.
Jury selection was delayed for years and both the prosecution and the defence team made glaring errors in the courtroom. However, after 13 hours of deliberation the jury came back with a guilty verdict, earning gasps from the courtroom and happy tears and hugs from Savio’s friends and family.
In a made-for-TV movie on the Lifetime channel, Rob Lowe played Drew Peterson and Kaley Cuoco (Big Bang Theory) played his much younger fourth wife Stacy Peterson.
You can read the full backstory to this case here.
Photo: AP Image