I smell a P-pass comming...http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/local/chi-sliwinski_web17oct17,0,2100853.story?coll=chi_tab01_layout
By Brian Cox | Special to the Tribune
2:03 PM CDT, October 16, 2007
Digg Del.icio.us Facebook Fark Google Newsvine Reddit Yahoo Print Single page view Reprints Reader feedback Text size: Jeanette Sliwinski accelerated to 87 m.p.h. seconds before she killed three men in a failed suicide attempt, ramming her Ford Mustang into a stopped car, prosecutors said during opening arguments in the woman's murder trial.
Sliwinski, then 23, was traveling 77 m.p.h. east on Dempster Street, running three red lights as other vehicles swerved to avoid an accident, prosecutors said this morning in describing events leading up to the July 14, 2005, crash in Skokie.
The Morton Grove woman then accelerated before hitting the rear of a Honda Civic carrying the men, and both cars flipped, prosecutors said.
"It was murder," said Cook County Assistant State's Atty. Jim McAuliff in the Skokie courthouse.
Sliwinski was kicking and screaming and told police who were trying to help her at the scene, "It didn't work. I want to die. You don't understand. I want to die. Let me die," McAuliff said.
Sliwinski's attorney Todd Pugh said the crash was a tragedy but not murder.
He said Sliwinski was legally insane at the time and suffered from depression and other mental illnesses that had been getting worse in the months before the accident. Sliwinski had been hospitalized a few weeks before the crash with suicidal thoughts, and had been getting treatment through a series of doctors and medications, Pugh said.
"She was suffering a psychotic episode and lacked the ability to appreciate the criminality of her actions," Pugh said.
Michael Dahlquist, 39, John Glick, 35, and Douglas Meis, 29, all from Chicago--were on their lunch break at the time of the crash, authorities said. The worked together at Shure Inc. in Niles, which manufactures microphones and other audio electronic products, and all three were musicians.
Glick's wife, Rebecca Crawford, was first on the witness stand and said the last time she saw her husband was the morning of the accident. He kissed her goodbye, told her he loved her, and the next time she saw him was two days later at the funeral home, Crawford said.
Meis' mother, Gail, lives in North Carolina and testified the last time she spoke with her son was a week before the crash. The night of the crash a sheriff's deputy came to her door and told her what happened, she said.
Sliwinski sat with her hands folded on the table during the proceedings. She weeped quietly and wiped tears from her eyes during Gail Meis' testimony.
Friends and family of the victims hugged and quietly exchanged greetings in the courtroom before the trial. Sliwinski's parents were also in attendance.
Sliwinski, a former model, is charged with three counts of first-degree murder and faces life in prison if convicted, prosecutors said.
Testimony is scheduled to continue this afternoon, and the bench trial is expected to last about a week.