A television camera will be rolling next month during the trial of a man charged with being the mastermind behind the March 2010 slayings of three members of a Darien family.
DuPage County Judge Daniel Guerin on Monday agreed to allow extended media coverage of the trial for Johnny Borizov, who is accused in the killings of Jeffrey and Lori Kramer and their 20-year-old son, Mike. The trial is scheduled to begin April 16.
It will be the first time a television camera and a still camera will be allowed to document a trial in DuPage. But there will be limitations.
Guerin denied a request to have two television cameras and two still cameras in the courtroom. Video and photographs also won't be allowed during the testimony of several witnesses who are considered victims of the March 2, 2010, shooting, including Jeffrey and Lori Kramer's daughter, Angela.
Prosecutors say Borizov was involved in a bitter child-custody dispute with Angela Kramer when he enlisted co-defendant Jacob Nodarse to murder her family. The Kramers were fatally shot inside their home after Nodarse broke in through a window about 3 a.m. Angela Kramer survived by hiding in a closet.
After the killings, Nodarse fled to his parents' home in Florida, where he was arrested the next day. Authorities said he later confessed to killing the Kramers at Borizov's behest.
In September 2011, Nodarse pleaded guilty but mentally ill to first-degree murder in a plea deal that requires him to testify at Borizov's trial.
Prosecutors on Monday asked Guerin to ban the taking of video and photographs during Nodarse's testimony.
The judge ruled that a jailhouse informant won't face the cameras when he testifies during the trial. Prosecutors wanted the same for Nodarse.
"I think he qualifies as an informant," Assistant State's Attorney Joe Ruggiero said.
Guerin disagreed, adding that Nodarse is "a different situation" than the jailhouse informant.
The judge decided to move the trial to larger courtroom, in part, to accommodate the cameras and number of family members expected to attend. The issue of where to locate the cameras will be determined during an April 8 hearing.
Borizov, who remains jailed without bond, maintains he is innocent and has pleaded not guilty to first-degree murder, conspiracy, solicitation of murder and home invasion.
His attorney has said there's no evidence he was involved other than unreliable statements by Nodarse, who has a history of mental illness.
Nodarse faces 45 years to life in prison and will be sentenced sometime after Borizov stands trial.