Witness: Drew Peterson Planned Amusement Park Fight For Murder Alibi

One of Drew Peterson's former co-workers laid out the accused wife-killer's alleged scheme for covering his tracks, and it involved a trip to Great America.

wanted a heads-up after his third wife's murder had been arranged so he could get into a fight at an amusement park, one of the accused-killer's former co-workers testified on Wednesday.

The co-worker, , related how Peterson wanted time to get to Great America amusement park in Gurnee and, once there, how he planned to pick a fight with someone to make sure he did not go unnoticed.

As an alternative to the amusement park alibi, Pachter said, Peterson considered leaving the country and staying on foreign soil while third wife was rubbed out.

Peterson, 58, and Pachter, 38, worked together for a Downers Grove cable television contractor. Peterson was also a Bolingbrook cop and curried favor with Pachter by running a background check on his co-worker and figuring out a misdemeanor sex crime conviction was labeled as a felony, according to testimony.

Pachter was able to get the bureaucratic mix-up straightened out, he said, but asked Peterson for more help in the way of a loan to pay of a $1,000 gambling debt.

Peterson refused the loan, he said, but then offered Pachter money to orchestrate Savio's murder.

Pachter said Peterson hatched the scheme while taking him along for a ride in his squad car in late 2003. During the ride, he said, Peterson "asked if I could find somebody to take care of his third wife."

"He told me she had a drug problem and worked at Red Lobster," Pachter recalled, telling how Peterson confided that Savio had something on him and was going to the police about it.

Pachter said Peterson offered him $25,000, and if he could find someone to do the job for cheaper than that, he could keep the difference.

"He told me at the end of the ride-along, he said this is something you'll take to the grave," Pachter said.

Just months later, in March 2004, Savio turned up drowned in a dry bathtub. During a telephone conversation following her death, Pachter said, Peterson told him, “By the way, that favor I asked you, I don’t need it anymore."

Defense attorney repeatedly accused Pachter of lying. He also established that Pachter has never actually killed anyone before and that he is not a "hit man" in the "Chicago outfit."

Lopez went on to accuse of Pachter of conspiring with Ric Mims—another of Peterson's friends who was living with the disgraced ex-cop in the days following the mysterious disappearance of his fourth wife, —to commit insurance fraud.

Pachter denied the insurance fraud allegation, but did say he helped Mims beat a drug test. Pachter also admitted to owing the IRS $35,000 after Lopez derisively asked, "You can't even pay your taxes, can you?"

Also Wednesday, Illinois State Police Master Sgt. discussed the investigation of Savio's death and the curious decision of his supervisor to allow Peterson to sit next to Stacy when she was questioned.

"I told Sgt. ( that I didn't think it was a good idea," said Falat, who at the time of Savio's death was a state trooper temporarily assigned to the the investigations division.

"We never interview two people in the same room," said Falat, who also told of Collins allowing Peterson to be questioned in the lunchroom of the Bolingbrook Police Department.

One of Savio's doctors, Vinod Motiani, was called to the stand to discuss her health and a young man who lives in the house next-door to the one she died in also testified.

The neighbor, Nick Pontarelli, was 14 when Savio was found drowned in a dry bathtub. He called her his "second mother" and told of the shock he felt when he, his parents, and another neighbor discovered her corpse in the tub.

Peterson had asked the Pontarellis and the other neighbor to go inside Savio's house and look for her after she hadn't answered her door or telephone for two days.

In the middle of Pontarelli's testimony, one of the jurors, a 22-year-old Columbia College student who lives in Bolingbrook with his parents, informed the bailiff that he knows the witness.

The juror, Judge and all the attorneys involved in the case retired to a conference room to sort the matter out. When they returned to the courtroom, the man was allowed to remain on the jury.

Testimony in the case will continue Thursday. , the Wheaton attorney who handled Savio's divorce from Peterson and claims he was told by Stacy that Peterson killed his third wife, may be called in the morning.

Peterson's attorneys argued about what Smith can say from the witness stand. Defense lawyer said there is a "privilege issue" and that Burmila is going to order Smith to disclose information shared by Savio while she was his client.

If Smith does not divulge the statements made by Savio, Brodsky said, he will not get to testify.

Watchful Eye August 23, 2012 at 11:32 PM
John, you'll have to forgive me, but I would have to be loaded on straight gin to understand and make sense of your comment @9:20am. What are you talking about? I said you have NO PROOF Pachter's testimony is B.S. How do you know, where you in the car with them? Are we supposed to believe that this guy is a sexual predator because he was 18 and his gf was 15? I think Peterson was a sexual predator because his gf was 16 or 17 and he was pushing 50. How's about that? You think his IRS problems make him not credible? Then one of his lawyers has no business being allowed to practice law, because he was convicted of under-reporting both personal and business income. Besides, Pacther was another one of Drewpy's "friends." He had a lot of "friends." Some were cops, some weren't. When you can show ME the proof that he wasn't asked to find a hitman to kill Katheen Savio, let me know. You've asked for proof plenty of times and long enough on these boards. Show me the money, John M.
Francis M. Regan August 24, 2012 at 12:30 AM
Drew was 47 and Stacy 17 when they met and it wasn't a crime.
Mason Dixon August 24, 2012 at 09:31 PM
This is just plain ridiculous. Of course Pacther has some skeletons in his closet coming out. He was asked to find a hit man for crying out loud. It's obvious Drew knew he wasn't the model citizen which makes him a prime candidate for the job. Now, if he was (as you seem to require) squeeky clean and unblemished and testified to this then that WOULD make me suspicious. No one wants to hire Mr. Clean to find your hitman. Geesh.
Francis' Best Friend August 25, 2012 at 02:41 PM
OHHHHHHH. OK! I was worried for a second. I thought Drew was near 50 and she was 16 or 17 as watchful eye said. And that would have been CREEPY!!!! Now that Francis cleared it all up, I now know he was 47 and she was 17. That's normal and well intended. I agree with you fully. I also believe that you should consider 2 teenagers with a 2-3 year age difference makes the older a sexual predator, but a person dating a teenage who is 30 years the other's senior is just romantic.
RobynD323 August 26, 2012 at 01:00 AM
The Judge is on the take. Lopez think's he's a part of the mafia. When he's not. Drew Peterson did murder not one, but two, of his wives and will kill again, if he's found innocent. Drew is a special egg. He likes the sport of the kill. His lawyer's are guilty of wearing cheap suits, cheap sunglasses, suffering from chronic halitosis, and all 3 together could NOT figure their way out of a wet paper-sack. They're putting each witness, the state puts up, "on mini trial" because they know "without a shadow of a doubt" their client is "guilty as sin." Who really cares if Drew asked this guy to find a hit man? Drew is a murdering sociopath. If he goes free, this will be yet another travesty of justice. But mark my word. He will murder again. The funny thing is, maybe next time it will be a "true accident" and he'll be framed wrongfully. I call this, Karma. Something Drew and every one of his attorney's will endure at the end of this trial. I had mixed feelings about this case. I now believe drewpy will be found, GUILTY. It's just a show his attorney's put on each day..trying to make their "framed client" look innocent. Listen, if Drew Peterson was this fine outstanding man the "Drewpy defense" claims he is, why did he sit in jail for 3 years? awaiting trial?? I rest my case.


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