Restrict Drew Peterson's Media Coverage: Public Defender

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JOLIET, IL — As Drew Peterson moves forward with his quest to have his 2012 murder conviction overturned, his new Will County public defender has filed an objection, asking that Judge Ed Burmila restrict news media access for Peterson’s upcoming court proceedings.

Assistant Public Defender Jason Strzelcki filed his objection for extended media coverage inside the new Will County Courthouse, which opened in October 2020. The motion was submitted on behalf of Peterson and Will County Public Defender Michael Renzi.

The public defender’s filing “objects to any and all requests for extended media coverage of these proceedings … post-conviction proceedings are currently pending in this matter; several requests for the allowance of extended media coverage have been made by the media and filed with the clerk of the circuit court,” Strzelecki outlined.

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“This matter has already been subject to intense media scrutiny and any further extended coverage would not further the interests of justice but would only serve as a distraction.”

The Will County public defender’s filing ended by stating, “Defendant Drew Peterson prays that this honorable court deny any and all requests for extended media coverage of this matter.”

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At least four news media outlets: Joliet Patch, WJOL, Chicago Tribune and The Herald-News filed petitions notifying Will County court officials of plans to take photos, video or do live blogging from inside Judge Burmila’s Courtroom 801 when Peterson’s next court hearing takes place.

According to court records, Peterson’s post-conviction case is set for a status hearing Feb. 7. Peterson is trying to convince Judge Burmila to overturn his 2012 first-degree murder conviction in the death of his third wife, Kathleen Savio, and grant Peterson a new trial.

Peterson maintains that his lead private criminal defense lawyer, Joel Brodsky, provided ineffective assistance of counsel.

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