The intruder used a hammer to smash a first-floor window and enter the Illinois home of a successful, long-time local business owner and his family. The sound of glass shattering at 3 a.m. on March 2, 2010, woke those inside. Moments later, the intruder fired, killing 48-year-old Lori Kramer, her husband Jeffrey, and their 20-year-old son Michael. An overnight guest and another family member sleeping in the basement managed to escape, and a daughter in an upstairs bedroom hid in a closet and dialed 911. The intruder fled as police cars approached, sirens screaming from several blocks away.
To the layperson, this crime looked like a deadly, random home invasion. But as on an episode of "CSI Miami" or A & E’s popular crime show "48 hours," this tragedy would prove otherwise. Detectives worked the case diligently from Illinois to Indiana and on to Florida. They contacted cell-phone carriers. Like a footprint, the cell-tower signals steered police to an IHOP restaurant dumpster in Indiana, where they recovered various items including the gun used by the killer.
By the next morning, Florida police picked up the cell signal and arrested 23-year old Jacob Nodarse. The young man waived extradition and was returned voluntarily to DuPage County, Illinois.
While in a Florida jail, Nodarse spilled his guts out to authorities. Within hours of Nodarse's capture, another man in Illinois, Johnny Borizov, was also taken into police custody.
The Kramers' daughter Angela, 25, found hiding in a bedroom closet when police responded to the shooting, had lived with her parents for about a year. She and her infant child moved in after a messy break-up with -- guess who? -- Johnny Borizov, a man Angela Kramer feared and who was fighting her in family court over visitation rights and child support.
Once police interviewed Angela, the pieces of the crime fit together in a neat package. Her former boyfriend and father of her child was angry at Angela and her parents; he didn't want to pay out 20% of his earnings to support his own child.
Allegedly, a month before the shooting, Johnny Borizov (near right) hired his best friend, Jacob Nodarse (far right), to kill Angela and her parents.
The evening of the shooting, Borizov was at a Joliet casino, captured on casino video which he could conveniently claim as an air-tight alibi. According to sealed DuPage County court documents, Angela and Borizov had been scheduled to appear at a hearing a week after the killings.
I realize investigators have a long way to go as they continue to gather information and process evidence. I understand that a person isn't guilty when accused or charged with a crime, but only after being convicted in a fair trial. That is our legal system.
But as an expert on family-violence issues, I have difficulty holding my tongue and remaining on the sidelines.
In my opinion, 28-year-old Johnny Borizov planned out the execution-style murder of a woman he once loved and with whom he has a 13-month-old son. In the mind of an angry and controlling abuser, death is the ultimate punishment for someone who ends and/or leaves the relationship and for those who aid or assist her.
It made me think of yet another case, 30 miles away. Perhaps the detectives on the Angela Kramer case can cross over to Will County and work on the unsolved December 2009 murder of abuse victim Lacey Gaines, 20. She was found stabbed and strangled, with no signs of forced entry or a struggle in her Justice, Illinois, home.
In March of that year, in a Cook County court, her baby's father, Sanchez Regelio (Sanchez has used several aliases in the past; I'm not sure what legal name he is currently using) filed a petition to establish parentage. Everyone called Sanchez"Daniel," including the late Lacey. Sanchez took the paternity test and was proven to be the baby's father sometime in May of 2009.
But in September of 2009, Sanchez withdrew his petition for custody of the child -- because, in my opinion, he had decided to take matters into his own hands. He either allegedly hired someone to kill his former girlfriend and mother of his son, or he did it himself. This case is yet another example of a "family hit" that will remain a cold case because very few in law enforcement are properly trained in domestic-violence crimes and intimate-partner homicide.