The key witness in the region’s first-ever televised trial also will face cameras during his sentencing hearing next week, a DuPage County judge ruled today.
Judge Daniel Guerin agreed to allow a photographer and video camera at Monday’s sentencing hearing for Jacob Nodarse.
Nodarse, a former Countryside resident, faces a minimum 45-year prison sentence for his role in the murders of three members of a Darien family.
Guerin said today that he would approve the same courtroom camera set-up that was in place this spring when Nodarse was the key witness against Johnny Borizov.
Nodarse’s testimony provided evidence that led to Borizov’s conviction on charges that he plotted the murders of Jeffery and Lori Kramer of Darien and their son, Michael on March 2, 2010.
Borizov was sentenced to life in prison for goading Nodarse into breaking into the Kramer home and shooting the Kramers. Authorities said the slayings were prompted by Borizov’s child custody battle with Angela Kramer, the daughter of Jeffrey and Lori Kramer.
In exchange for his testimony against Borizov, Nodarse was allowed to plead guilty to only one of the murders, that of Jeffrey Kramer. He must receive at least a 20-year minimum sentence for the single count of first-degree murder, plus an additional 25-year sentence for discharging the firearm that killed Jeffrey Kramer.
Had he pleaded guilty to more than one murder, Nodarse would have faced an automatic life sentence, though the judge could still impose a life term.
The Borizov trial, which was held in April and May, was the first televised trial in the Chicago metropolitan area, part of an ongoing Illinois Supreme Court pilot program to experiment with courtroom cameras.
Guerin, who oversaw the Borizov trial, said at today’s hearing that he would move Nodarse’s sentencing hearing into DuPage’s largest criminal courtroom after prosecutors indicated they expect a large number of spectators.