July sentencing set for man who plotted Darien family murders

Special to the Tribune

The man found guilty of masterminding the murders of three members of a Darien family will face sentencing in mid-July, a DuPage County judge decided Thursday.

Judge Daniel Guerin set July 15 for Johnny Borizov’s sentencing hearing. The judge, who presided over Borizov’s murder trial, said he would also hear on that date a lengthy post-trial motion filed by Borizov’s attorneys.

Borizov, 32, formerly of Willow Springs, was found guilty by a jury last month of plotting the deaths of his former girlfriend, Angela Kramer, and her family, and then convincing a friend, Jacob Nodarse, to carry out the murders.

Kramer evaded injury by hiding in a closet when Nodarse broke into her family’s home on March 2, 2010, but her parents and a brother were shot to death.

Under Illinois law Borizov will face a mandatory sentence of natural life in prison.

Although the final sentence is already known, the hearing will give any victims who choose to do so a chance to address Borizov in open court. The defendant also will have a right to make a statement before the judge formally imposes sentence.

Before that happens, Borizov’s attorneys will argue that Guerin should set aside the verdict or at least grant him a new trial. In support, they filed a motion citing almost three dozen incidents of purported evidentiary errors and other errors they contend were made during the four-week trial.

Several points argue that errors were made regarding the testimony of Nodarse, the prosecution’s main witness, who testified that Borizov convinced him to kill Jeffrey and Lori Kramer and their son, Michael, 20.

Nodarse spent three days testifying to an elaborate scenario he said Borizov created. Nodarse said he eventually came to believe he had become dangerously embroiled in a custody dispute between Borizov and Angela Kramer over their baby, and that he had to kill the Kramers to protect himself and his family.

Nodarse, who is awaiting sentencing after he pleaded guilty to murder and agreed to testify against Borizov, was taken into custody the day after the slayings.

During the trial, prosecutors played a videotaped interrogation of Nodarse from March 2010 during which prosecutors could be heard telling Nodarse “You seem like an honest guy” and “Johnny really screwed and manipulated you,” according to the motion. That tape unfairly prejudice jurors, Borizov’s lawyers say.

“The state was able to comment and, in essence, testify to and give personal opinion as to the credibility of Mr. Nodarse,” the motion read.

Twitter: @ChicagoBreaking

Copyright © 2018, The Baltimore Sun, a Baltimore Sun Media Group publication | Place an Ad