Drew Peterson won't appeal hearsay rulings to speed trial - New York News

Drew Peterson won't appeal hearsay rulings to speed trial

Updated: Apr 24, 2012 17:05 PM CDT
CHICAGO (Sun-Times Media Wire) -

Drew Peterson won't fight a recent appellate court ruling allowing additional hearsay statements to be used against him when he stands trial for the 2004 drowning death of his third wife — a decision that could speed up his trial date.

His attorneys on Tuesday formally asked the 3rd District Appellate court to quickly return the case to Will County, so the former Bolingbrook cop can go to trial on the murder charges against him, Sun-Times Media is reporting.

"We want to get the case rolling," defense attorney Joel Brodsky said. "We want to get it back and get a trial date."

The request indicates Peterson's attorneys won't launch an appeal to the Illinois Supreme Court seeking to overturn the lower court's ruling earlier this month allowing eight previously barred hearsay statements from being used as evidence in his trail for the murder of Kathleen Savio.

With the motion filed Tuesday, Peterson's attorneys hope to have the case returned to Will County within two weeks and assigned to a judge.

Peterson could stand trial as early as July, Brodsky predicted, though he acknowledged defense attorneys still will seek to have the disputed hearsay statements excluded as evidence.

Peterson, 58, has been jailed since May 2009 when he was arrested for allegedly drowning Savio in her bathtub during their acrimonious divorce.

Peterson also remains a suspect in the 2007 disappearance of his fourth wife, Stacy, though he has never been charged in that case.

A spokesman for the Will County State's Attorney's office declined to comment, except to say prosecutors are prepared for Peterson's trial.

"We're ready to go to trial," Charles Pelkie said.

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