SA Glasgow Wins Prestigious Crime Fighting Award

Will County State's Attorney James Glasgow has been named the winner of the Mitchell A. Mars Prosecutorial Excellence Award.

Will County State's Attorney James Glasgow has won the Mitchell A. Mars Prosecutorial Excellence Award for his outstanding effort in the prosecution of former Bolingbrook police sergeant Drew Peterson in the murder of his third wife, Kathleen Savio, the Chicago Crime Commission announced Wednesday.

Glasgow will be honored at the Stars of Distinction 2012 awards dinner on Nov. 7.

“We are pleased to recognize the efforts of Will County State’s Attorney James Glasgow by honoring him with the Chicago Crime Commission’s Mitchell A. Mars Prosecutorial Excellence Award,” said J.R. Davis, the president and chairman of the Chicago Crime Commission.

“His unrelenting commitment to justice prompted the passage of legislation that will forever affect how prosecutorial procedures are carried out in Illinois,” Davis said.

After nearly two years of litigation before the Third District Appellate Court and the Illinois Supreme Court, Glasgow and his team were granted a ruling that would change the course of the case. In April 2012 the Third District Appellate Court effectively overturned Judge Stephen White's earlier decision by ruling that the prosecution team could use eight statements made by both the victim prior to her death and by Peterson's still-missing fourth wife, Stacy Peterson, prior to her disappearance.

The Peterson prosecution was a five-year process that involved a number of groundbreaking initiatives. The Will County State’s Attorney’s Office conducted an 18-month Special Grand Jury investigation following the disappearance of Stacy Peterson. In addition, Glasgow filed a petition to exhume Savio's body, after which second and third autopsies revealed compelling new evidence that assisted him in proving she was murdered and not the victim of a slip-and-fall accident.

Glasgow also worked with the general assembly to draft and enact new legislation that placed the concept of “forfeiture by wrongdoing” into the Illinois criminal rules of evidence. Forfeiture by wrongdoing enables prosecutors to enter relative and probative hearsay statements into evidence if they can prove a defendant killed a witness to prevent him or her from testifying. The Illinois Supreme Court eventually adopted the common law doctrine of forfeiture by wrongdoing in its decision regarding a DuPage County murder case and then adopted the federal rules on forfeiture by wrongdoing.

On Sept. 6, after a lengthy and contentious trial, a jury convicted Drew Peterson of first-degree murder. He is awaiting sentencing.

“Through patience and diligence, James Glasgow brought a guilty man to justice. He truly exemplifies the meaning of the title ‘Prosecutor’,” Davis said.

“I am truly honored to accept the distinguished Mitchell A. Mars Prosecutorial Excellence Award on behalf of the entire Will County State’s Attorney’s Office and the extraordinarily talented prosecutors who helped secure this important verdict,” Glasgow said. “This five-year battle made it all the way up to the Illinois Supreme Court and back before culminating with a critical victory for battered and abused women across Illinois. Successful prosecutions like this are only possible through the hard work and dedication of every attorney, legal secretary and administrator in my office. I am blessed to have such an excellent staff.”

The Chicago Crime Commission Stars of Distinction Mitchell A. Mars Prosecutorial Excellence Award is named after the late assistant U.S. attorney who is credited with convicting some of Chicago’s most notorious organized crime figures in the Operation Family Secrets trial.

“As a recipient of the Mitchell A. Mars Prosecutorial Excellence Award, Glasgow finds himself in the company of some of Illinois’ finest prosecutors,” Davis said. “Past recipients of the award include state and federal prosecutors responsible for ridding our communities of street gang leaders, outfit members, drug dealers and murderers,” he added.

Bratski12 October 18, 2012 at 05:49 PM
By presenting the facts of the case. This was a police officer of 30 years that knew the system and how to work around it. Why was he given Professional Courtesy whn they interviewed Stacy. What people need to understand was there was so ,much evidence that was presented at the "Hearsay Hearing" 2 yrs plus ago that so of which was not allowed in. Also, many people are stuck on the "Drew's Law" the Hearsay that was allowed in, it was NOT "Drew's LAW" that this was based off. It went back to the Common Law where “The U.S. Supreme Court allows out-of-court statements to be heard at trial under what is known as the "forfeiture-by-wrongdoing" rule - essentially, that defendants forfeit their Sixth Amendment right to confront a prosecution witness if they wrongfully cause the absence of that witness.” SO that along with all the other evidence, Drew was convicted.
Bratski12 October 18, 2012 at 05:49 PM
Bill Zim, why is that?
John Tips October 19, 2012 at 02:37 PM
As a former Juror on a court case here in Will County, I would like to say that I am not fond of any Hearsay Law! I do recall learning of the "Witch Trials of Salem" while in school, don't you? I also recall being on the jury here and having the judge ask all the potential jurors their basic questions. The one question which was never asked by the judge was "can you afford to be on this jury, and spend the time here to serve?" If the judge would have asked this then maybe during our deliberations there would not have been people saying "lets just convict this guy and get out of here" or, " the cops charged him, cops do not lie" and the best one was "I work at a tire barn, I don't get paid for being here and I can't make my car payment if we get sequestered!" How would YOU feel if your life were in the hands of these jurors?
Robert October 19, 2012 at 03:21 PM
Now we are giving out awards for people who tread on the constitution by supporting and prosecuting people under 'hearsay" laws? Have we lost our minds? She said, he said, they said, we said, you said, I said. John Tips is correct....Salem Witch Trials....Will County Version.
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