Attorney: Internet Use Could Bias Jury In Peterson Case
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JOLIET, Ill. (CBS) — Attorneys for accused killer Drew Peterson are trying to find ways to make sure their case does not get sabotaged by jurors using the Internet.
As WBBM Newsradio’s Bernie Tafoya reports, Peterson’s attorney, Joel Brodsky, is mainly worried about jurors using the Internet to look up information Peterson that is not admitted during the trial, and then use that to form an opinion on a verdict.
LISTEN: WBBM Newsradio’s Bernie Tafoya reports
He is also worried about jurors posting comments on Twitter and Facebook during the trial.
For that reason, the Peterson defense team is trying to come up with ways to prevent or monitor Internet and social media use by jurors.
Brodsky said possible ways include “asking jurors who are picked for their IP addresses, what their Internet provider is, what their Facebook page is, what their Twitter handle is.”
One information technology professional told Brodsky that cookies could be put on the jurors’ computers and smart phones to squeal on them electronically if they break the rules. But Brodsky admits such a measure would be extreme.
Peterson, a former Bolingbrook police sergeant, has been held since May 2009 on charges that he murdered his third wife, Kathleen Savio, whose body was found in a dry bathtub in March 2004.
Savio’s death was originally ruled an accidental drowning by the Will County Coroner’s office. But after Peterson’s fourth wife, Stacy, disappeared in October 2007, Savio’s body was exhumed and her death was reclassified as a homicide.
Peterson has not been charged in Stacy’s disappearance, but Illinois State Police believe she is dead, and have named Peterson a person of interest.