Prosecutor James Glasgow tried to create an image of a dysfunctional relationship between Drew Peterson and Kathleen Savio as he spoke to jurors Tuesday during his opening statement in the murder trial of the former police officer.
Glasgow told jurors that things got so heated between Savio and Peterson that he once held a knife to his spouse's throat.
Peterson is facing two counts of first-degree murder for allegedly killing Savio in 2004. For the first three years after Savio's death, it was believed she died from an accidental drowning in her bathtub. She had been Peterson’s third wife and it wasn't until Peterson's fourth wife, Stacy, went missing in October 2007 that authorities took another look at how Savio died.
Savio's body was exhumed and re-examined. A forensic pathologist concluded her death was a homicide. Peterson has pleaded not guilty and has been in jail on $20 million bail since he was arrested on May 7, 2009.
Read more: Get caught up on the Peterson trial
Addressing jurors in a Joliet, Illinois, courtroom, Glasgow said that in June 2002, Peterson broke into Savio's home and threatened her at knifepoint. He also described an incident in which Peterson allegedly tried to hire someone to kill Savio, but the defense strongly objected.
Defense attorney Steven Greenberg asked the judge for a mistrial, saying the evidence is inadmissible. Judge Edward Burmila ruled against a mistrial, but he excused the jury and agreed with the defense saying the prosecution should have given notice to the defense before bringing up those incidents.
The judge then allowed Glasgow to continue with his opening statement.
Glasgow finished his opening statement by saying, "This is not the time for argument; it's time for an overview. This is not a case where you'll have DNA, fingerprints or a videotaped confession. When you've heard all the evidence, you'll be able to determine that Drew Peterson killed Kathleen Savio beyond a reasonable doubt."