Man says he never told anyone he was pressured to kill three people
BY DAN ROZEK Staff Reporterfirstname.lastname@example.org April 30, 2013 2:06PM
Witness Jacob Nodarse answers questions during cross examination in the murder trial of Johnny Borizov at DuPage County Courthouse in Wheaton Tuesday, April 30, 2013. | Rich Hein~Sun-Times
Updated: June 2, 2013 6:24AM
Jacob Nodarse acknowledged Tuesday he wanted to be found insane after killing three members of a Darien family so he’d be sent to a hospital instead of prison.
“I’d rather be in a hospital than a prison. I think anyone would,” said Nodarse as he finished nearly three days of testimony against his one-time friend Johnny Borizov.
But the 26-year-old gunman claimed that shortly after the March 2, 2010 killings he gladly would have accepted a death sentence by lethal injection for his crime.
“I would have taken the needle immediately if they’d offered it,” Nodarse told the DuPage County jury hearing Borizov’s murder trial.
Nodarse has admitted carrying out the deadly shootings that killed Jeffrey and Lori Kramer, along with their 20-year-old son, Michael.
Prosecutors contend Borizov planned the 3 a.m. attack, then coerced Nodarse into committing the killings.
Borizov, now 31, allegedly orchestrated the shooting spree inside the Kramer home to end a bitter child custody dispute with his former girlfriend, Angela Kramer.
Prosecutors contend Borizov wanted Kramer and her family slain so he could obtain sole custody of the couple’s 13-month-old son. She survived by hiding in a closet.
Nodarse has testified he committed the murders after being pressured for months by Borizov, who warned that Nodarse and his family would be killed by other Borizov friends if he failed to kill the Kramers.
Borizov’s attorneys have attacked that claim by citing Nodarse’s long history of mental illness, along with his alcohol and drug abuse. Nodarse also admitted that a few months before the killings that he had a falling out with Michael Kramer, who had been a close friend.
Nodarse acknowledged Tuesday he never told his family, friends or his psychiatrist that Borizov allegedly had used threats to force him to carry out the killings.
“Did you tell one human being in the world Johnny Borizov was involved in this plot to kill you and your family?” asked Richard Kling, one of Borizov’s defense attorneys.
“No,” answered Nodarse.
And Nodarse said his grasp on reality was so shaky for several days after the shootings that he convinced himself he hadn’t carried out the killings, but instead had waited outside the house in his car.
“That’s what I believed for three days until I figured out that it was my mind trying to protect itself,” said Nodarse.
He testified against Borizov as part of a plea deal with prosecutors that calls for him to receive a prison term ranging from 45 years to life.
“I still believe I’ll get life anyway,” said Nodarse, who won’t be sentenced until after Borizov’s trial. “Maybe I’ll get out when I’m 75—but that’s still life to me.”