Glasgow, team deliver in the clutch
SouthtownStar editorial September 21, 2012 10:40PM
Updated: October 24, 2012 6:38AM
The pursuit and prosecution of wrongdoers in recent years in Will County have not always been a tidy or competent exercise in justice.
On occasions, we’ve questioned longtime State’s Attorney James Glasgow and the performance of his office. Most notably, he was in charge during the misguided and publicity-driven arrest of a Lynwood police officer as the “honeybee killer” in 2010 and the botched 2006 case in which trumpeted credit-card theft charges against a dozen Joliet-area hotel owners and employees had to be dropped because of an unreliable informant.
But just as he deserved to be skewered over the handling of those cases, Glasgow earns high praise for this month’s convictions of Christopher Vaughn and Drew Peterson. Two sociopathic killers are going to be imprisoned for the rest of their lives, and Glasgow and his prosecutorial team are responsible for that.
Granted, the conviction of Vaughn for the horrific murders of his wife and three children was a slam-dunk case — replete with strong evidence and motive and a lame defense that it was his wife who was the killer. When a jury takes less than an hour to convict someone of being a multiple murderer, clearly it was a powerful case.
Despite Vaughn’s attempt at careful planning, he left bright arrows pointing at himself as the killer. Still, Glasgow’s team tied up the loose ends and left no doubt as to his guilt.
In the mega-publicized Peterson case, the prosecution’s task was much tougher — lacking physical evidence against Peterson and having to try to prove that a murder even occurred. Glasgow’s success in legalizing hearsay evidence from Kathleen Savio and Stacy Peterson and in persuading the judge to allow it was both impressive and, as jurors indicated after the trial, critical in obtaining a conviction.
So, while there have been missteps in the past, Glasgow and his staff came through in two of the biggest cases in Will County history — victories not only for them but for all of us.