11/29/2007 (www.suntimes.com) Chicago Sun-Times

“Stacy told clergyman Drew killed Ex” (Original Sneed Report)



Stacy told clergyman Drew killed Ex

November 29, 2007


Sneed hears Stacy Peterson told a clergyman in August that her husband had claimed to have killed his former wife Kathleen Savio and made it look like an accident.

A source close to the investigation tells Sneed the 23-year-old, who had been pregnant and living with Peterson when Savio was found dead in an empty bathtub in 2004, also told two other people close to her about her husband's statements regarding Savio's demise.

On Sunday, Oct. 28, the day Stacy disappeared, she told Peterson she was leaving him and issued this ultimatum: She was going to begin divorce proceedings, and she wanted him out of the house by Wednesday, according to the source.

The source believes it was the day of Stacy's ultimatum that her life may have ended. Stacy had told friends recently that if she disappeared, it wouldn't be her doing.

Savio, Peterson's third wife, was found dead shortly before their divorce settlement was concluded.

Peterson has been declared a suspect in Stacy's disappearance. The case has been labeled a "potential homicide" and appears to be moving swiftly toward a homicide investigation.

"All we need now is the body," the source said.

FBI search specialists, called in by State Police, were in Lockport on Wednesday assessing the Cal-Sag Channel, where they think Stacy's body may have been dumped. Investigators selected that location because of certain cell phone calls placed in that area.

Police are discussing salvage operations with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers in hopes they will bring in heavy equipment to dredge the area. "The police have already put down underwater cameras, which show it's cluttered with cars and truck trailers . . . and it needs to be cleared for divers," a source said.

The source offered this timeline for the day Stacy issued her ultimatum:

At 5 p.m. on Oct. 28, Peterson, a Bolingbrook cop, called in to take the day off.

At 7 p.m., Peterson met his stepbrother, Tom Morphey, at a local Starbucks and discussed "the problems he was having with Stacy and how to dispose of the problem," the source said.

Peterson reportedly excused himself and left Morphey in the coffee shop with Peterson's cell phone, which he told Morphey NOT to answer if it rang. The phone did ring after Peterson's departure, and the name "Stacy" appeared on the caller ID.

The source tells Sneed the call was made near the home of her friend Scott Rossetto, a man Stacy was communicating with via cell phone text messages.

The source believes this was an attempt by Peterson to place the focus of the police investigation on Stacy's friend.

Later that evening, Morphey was again summoned by Peterson -- only this time to his home, where he was reportedly asked to help Peterson remove a plastic blue barrel, which he described to police as feeling warm, and load it into a sport-utility vehicle, sources said.

The next day, Stacy was reported missing and one day later, Morphey apparently attempted suicide. While being treated at Edward Hospital in Naperville, Morphey was visited by Peterson on Oct. 30, the source said.

Peterson's attorney, Joel Brodsky, claimed Morphey's story makes no sense and described him as a man with psychological issues.

"There never was a blue barrel; there never was any carrying objects out," Brodsky said.

Meanwhile, the police are awaiting the results of an autopsy on the body of Savio, which was exhumed Nov. 13.

Will County State's Attorney James Glasgow recently stated Savio's death appeared to have been staged as an accident.

An independent autopsy conducted by former New York City chief medical examiner Michael Baden, at the request of Savio's family, concluded Savio died after a struggle, and her body was placed in the bathtub.

And the story, which has garnered national headlines and has talking TV mouths salivating, has now moved into a new chapter.