Trials & Litigation

Divorce Lawyer Testimony in Drew Peterson Trial: 4th Wife Mulled Accusing Him of Murdering 3rd Wife


A matrimonial lawyer testifying in a high-profile murder trial of a suburban Chicago police officer told jurors Wednesday about a conversation he had with defendant Drew Peterson’s fourth wife.

Attorney Harry Smith said she asked him whether she could get more money out of her husband in a divorce if she threatened to say he had killed his third wife, Kathleen Savio, according to the Associated Press and the Chicago Sun-Times.

Savio was then thought by authorities to have died in an accident at home in 2004. But shortly after Stacy Peterson’s conversation with Smith in 2007 she disappeared and Savio’s death was reclassified as a homicide.

Defense counsel for Peterson, who is being tried for Savio’s murder, called Smith in an effort to discredit the testimony of other witnesses that Stacy Peterson had accused Peterson in the slaying. The defense reportedly offered Smith’s testimony in an effort to prove that Stacy Peterson was simply mulling a plan to try to extort more money from Peterson.

According to the articles, Smith represented Savio in her divorce from Drew Peterson. However, although Stacy Peterson subsequently called him for input, Smith said he never took Stacy Peterson on as a client.

Earlier coverage:

ABAJournal.com: “Defense Calls Slain Woman ‘Bonkers,’ Seeks Mistrial in Ex-Cop Drew Peterson’s Wife-Murder Case”

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