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No decision yet on whether accused Naperville babysitter will get psych evaluation


Elzbieta Plackowska

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Updated: November 20, 2012 6:50PM

A DuPage County judge deferred a decision Thursday on requiring Naperville double-murder suspect Elzbieta Plackowska to undergo a psychiatric examination sought by prosecutors.

The request by prosecutors indicates they expect the 40-year-old Naperville woman will raise an insanity defense against charges she fatally stabbed her young son and another child left in her care.

Judge Robert Kleeman is expected to rule on the issue next week when Plackowska again appears in court. Plackowska, who is being held without bail, wore handcuffs and a yellow jail uniform during the brief hearing, but didn’t speak publicly.

Her court-appointed attorney, meanwhile, also has asked to have another mental health expert evaluate her.

After a closed-door meeting with Kleeman, Assistant Public Defender Michael Mara declined to say Thursday if the judge had agreed to allow that exam — though such requests are routinely approved in criminal cases.

Plackowska is accused of repeatedly stabbing and slashing her 7-year-old son, Justin, and 5-year-old Olivia Dworakowski while she was caring for them on Oct. 30 at the girl’s Naperville townhouse.

In statements to police, Plackowska allegedly offered differing accounts of the killings, but at one point claimed she stabbed the youngsters because they were “poisoned by society” and she needed to “drive the evil” out of them.

State’s Attorney Robert Berlin has said she later admitted concocting those claims, and instead told investigators she killed her son because she was angry at her husband. Plackowska allegedly told police she stabbed Olivia because the little girl had witnessed her son’s murder.

The legal proceedings against her soon could be televised—a first in the Chicago area.

Kleeman didn’t formally rule on a media request to allow cameras in the courtroom during Plackowska’s Nov. 21 arraignment, but asked Berlin and Mara if they had legal objections to televising the hearing.

Neither did, though Berlin noted some logistical issues still need to be finalized before that hearing.

The Illinois Supreme Court earlier this year moved to allow cameras in courtrooms to broaden media coverage of legal proceedings.

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