11/15/2007 (www.suntimes.com) Chicago Sun-Times

“Where's FBI? The Peterson case”



Where's FBI? The Peterson case . . .

November 15, 2007

BY MICHAEL SNEED Sun-Times Columnist

Why hasn't the FBI been asked to provide assistance in the disappearance of Stacy Peterson, which has become a nationwide story?

It's a question being asked by Sneed readers . . . and, for that matter, by Sneed.

The shocking answer: The FBI hasn't been asked.

● ● Media mayhem: It's no secret the case has become a runaway media circus, starring TV tongue titans Geraldo Rivera, Greta Van Susteren and Nancy Grace tripping all over one another to retrieve any tasty tidbit tossed over the transom of the Illinois State Police, which is ramrodding the probe.

● ● So Sneed called the FBI: "On its face, Stacy Peterson's disappearance does not appear to be a violation of federal law, which would fall under the jurisdiction of the FBI," said FBI spokesman Ross Rice. (In other words, it hasn't been classified a kidnapping yet.)

● ● The kicker: "However, we have, in the past, on a number of occasions, been asked to provide assistance to local police departments involving local crimes. For example, the Lisa Stebic case comes to mind. We have been asked to help in that case," Rice told Sneed.

● ● The surprise: "But as of right now, the Illinois State Police has not asked [the FBI] to provide any assistance in connection with the investigation," Rice added.

Drew who?

Sneed hears that Peterson's husband, suspended Bolingbrook cop Drew Peterson, not only appeared on the "Today" show Wednesday morning . . . but reportedly agreed to be interviewed afterward by "Dateline: NBC."

● ● Quoth a source: "I'm told Peterson was pretty impressed with his fancy hotel digs in New York."

O.J. juice . . .

Whaaa, no smokin' glove? O.J. Simpson, who survived a jury trial stemming from his wife's murder, has just been ordered to face trial on felony charges stemming from an alleged memorabilia heist.

● ● No kidding: O.J.'s response to the press Wednesday: "If I have any disappointment it's that I wish a jury were here. As always, I rely on the jury system." Amazing.

Pew news . . .

Pope Benedict XVI will celebrate his 81st birthday next year (April 16) at the White House with President Bush and wife, Laura.

● ● Just thought you'd want premature heads-up on a prelate birthday gift.

Top cop tip . . .

Update: Louisville Police Chief Robert C. White, who is on a short list for our top cop job, was once head of the Washington, D.C., Housing Authority . . . and served 23 years on the D.C. police department.


Actor Patrick "Dirty Dancing" Swayze will be arresting people in Chicago next month.

● ● Translation: Swayze, who will star in an A&E pilot/FBI drama, is slated to begin filming here Dec. 5 -- and wrapping up just before Christmas, according to Rich Moskal, director of the Chicago Film Office.

● ● Script tip: Swayze will play FBI Agent Charles Barker, a topnotch agent who gets justice served his way.

● ● The kicker: "Unbeknownst to Barker, he is being investigated by the FBI," said Steven Pearl, one of the show's executive producers.

Sneedlings . . .

Condolences to Officer Shawn Hallinan on the death of his father Eddie, a longtime People's Gas employee . . . Sam Waterston, 67; Ed Asner, 78; Petula Clark, 75; Daniel Barenboim, ageless