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updated: 9/1/2011 5:24 PM

Warrant issued in Hanover Park slaying

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  • Jeffrey Ferrigan

      Jeffrey Ferrigan

  • Jennifer Gustafson

      Jennifer Gustafson

 

A judge issued a no-bail arrest warrant Thursday for a Hanover Park man who has been named a person of interest in his wife's slaying after he failed to appear in court on a marijuana trafficking case.

Authorities say Jeffrey Ferrigan, 50, remains hospitalized while recovering from gunshot wounds suffered in a confrontation with police last week after his 40-year-old wife was found beaten to death inside their home.

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Ferrigan has not been charged with his wife Jennifer Gustafson's slaying. A prosecutor told DuPage County Judge John Kinsella in court Thursday he had no new information on the case.

Attorney Michael Fleming, who represents Ferrigan in the drug case, said he also had not spoken to his client and knew nothing about the homicide investigation other than what he learned from media reports. "I don't know anything about his condition," Fleming told the judge.

While "it may be academic," Kinsella said, he issued a no-bail warrant for Ferrigan's arrest and set an October hearing to determine whether a $15,000 bond he posted in April should be forfeited. Warrants are commonly issued when defendants fail to appear in court.

Ferrigan has been hospitalized since Friday, Aug. 26, when police opened fire on him as he approached them in a threatening manner with a knife in Lockport, according to police. State's Attorney Robert Berlin confirmed Thursday that Ferrigan was shot three times and is still recovering at Silver Cross Hospital in Joliet.

"The investigation is ongoing and obviously very active," Berlin said.

The discovery of Gustafson's body on Aug. 25 came a day after Ferrigan was released from jail on a domestic battery charge alleging he "pinched and grabbed at (the victim's) inner thighs while attempting to be affectionate toward her." The longtime construction worker, who has an extensive criminal history, was ordered to have no contact with Gustafson for 72 hours and to return to court the following Monday.

Court records show Gustafson was granted an emergency order of protection against Ferrigan on Aug. 22. Friends said she had recently voiced fears her husband would harm her and had taken to checking in with friends and co-workers each morning to let them know she was OK.

Gustafson, who tended bar at a Mount Prospect restaurant, is survived by a 14-year-old son and a 16-year-old daughter, court records show.

Ferrigan, according to court records, had several previous run-ins with law enforcement. Both he and his wife faced charges earlier this year as a result of an investigation by the DuPage Metropolitan Enforcement Group, a drug task force.

Gustafson was charged with possession of less than 30 grams of cocaine and possession of drug paraphernalia related to a plastic marijuana bong. On July 28, she pleaded guilty to possession of a controlled substance and was sentenced to two years of probation.

Ferrigan was charged with bringing 10 pounds of marijuana, valued at about $52,000, into DuPage County for the purpose of distribution. Authorities said he was arrested after undercover agents watched him accept marijuana from another man inside Ferrigan's garage with the door open.

In 1988, Ferrigan, then living in Antioch, pleaded guilty to reckless homicide in connection with a head-on collision that killed a female passenger and seriously injured the driver of another vehicle. Ferrigan, who was driving on a revoked license, also was charged with drunken driving.

Lake County court records show he was sentenced to 30 months probation and 18 months work release, but he violated the terms and was resentenced to four years in prison.

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