Neighbor: Drew Knew He'd Be Suspect

Hearsay hearing enters third week

By Charlie Wojciechowski
|  Monday, Feb 1, 2010  |  Updated 4:02 PM CDT
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Will Co. Sheriff's Department

Drew Peterson is being held in the Will County Adult Detention Facility in Joliet.

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A neighbor who helped find the body of Drew Peterson's third wife said the former Bolingbrook police sergeant seemed "genuinely distraught."

But Thomas Pontarelli said Peterson also immediately suggested he'd be a suspect in Kathleen Savio's 2004 death.

In a hearing to determine what hearsay evidence a judge will allow jurors to hear when Peterson stands trial in the slaying of Savio, Pontarelli testified about the night her body was found. He said Peterson called him and told him he was bringing a locksmith to gain access to her house.

He said when Savio was discovered lifeless in her bathtub, Peterson's first words were "What will I tell my children?"

He said when Peterson used his cell phone to notify police he said, "People are going to think I did it."

Pontarelli's son Nick also testified that Savio told him she feared Drew Peterson.

"She said if anything ever hapened to her it wasn't an accident," Nick Pontarelli told Judge Stephen White.

Peterson's attorneys said this is the first time Pontarelli has told anybody that, even though other witnesses have told the same story.

More than 30 witnesses have testified as the hearing enters its third week. The trial itself may not begin until next Spring.

Drew Peterson is also a suspect in his fourth wife Stacy's 2007 disappearance. He hasn't been charged with wrongdoing in that case.

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