The man accused of masterminding the murders of his ex-girlfriend's family pleaded not guilty Friday to the triple Darien slaying.
Johnny Borizov, 28, of Willow Springs entered the perfunctory plea while arraigned on a 26-count felony indictment alleging murder, conspiracy and solicitation.
His parents, brother and sister-in-law attended the brief DuPage County court hearing.
Afterward, attorney Marc Wolfe said the family plans to mount a vigorous defense.
"The family, his character and history does not support this kind of conduct," Wolfe said. "Frankly, we can't make heads or tails of the indictment. His family is going to stand behind him all the way. They know he is innocent."
The man accused of shooting the family, Jacob Nodarse, 24, of Countryside, is expected to be indicted next week. He also is accused of murder. Both men are being held without bond.
Prosecutors said Borizov persuaded Nodarse to carry out a plan to kill members of Angela Kramer's family as the former couple battled over custody of their infant son.
Kramer survived after hiding in a closet and calling 911, but her parents, Jeff and Lori, and 20-year-old brother Michael were fatally shot. His 17-year-old girlfriend and the slain couple's other son, Anthony Kramer, escaped. None of the survivors could identify the lone shooter.
Prosecutors said Nodarse provided police with a full videotaped confession in which he also implicates Borizov. Authorities say they also recovered the murder weapon.
Borizov was gambling with his brother at a Joliet riverboat at the time of the shootings - an alibi supported by video surveillance and credit card receipts. Still, prosecutors accused him of being behind the plot. They also said he made incriminating statements to Nodarse that were secretly recorded as the two were held in nearby cells at the Darien Police Department.