It was a case three years in the making and took roughly four weeks to play out in the courtroom. But in less than two hours, however, a jury found Orland Park businessman Allan Kustok guilty of first degree murder. The charge: Killing his own wife.
It was a case based largely on circumstantial evidence, but the jury must have decided that was enough to make a clear and unanimous decision. They told prosecutors they didn’t buy Allan Kustok’s story about how his wife Jeannie killed herself with a high powered gun, a gun her husband had given her for their anniversary.
That story was too flimsy and the crime too calculated, the jury decided.
That 12 person jury wasted no time convicting 63-year-old Kustok of killing his wife Anita, or Jeannie as she’s better known, inside their Orland Park home in 2010. She was the mother of their two children, Zak and Sarah–a sports reporter for the Brooklyn Nets. Sarah testified on her father’s behalf just yesterday saying he wasn’t capable of killing her mother. She also didn’t believe Jeannie would have killed herself.
Neither child was present, however, when the guilty verdict was read aloud in court today and the defendant dropped his head and shook it back and forth in disbelief.
For Jeannie’s relatives, there were great sighs of relief across the aisle. They are grateful for the outcome. They are grateful for the prosecutors’ hard work.
In court, assistant state’s attorney Jim Papa told the jury, “Her blood was on him in sizes and places that it shouldn`t and couldn`t be… the only way for all of that to get there is from this event.”
He went on to say it was as though Jeannie Kustok herself was screaming from the grave, “He did it. He killed me.”
Meanwhile, Allan Kustok’s sister Sharon Crooks wept for her brother, saying, “The jury has spoken. Two families are destroyed. There’s no victor here. We loved Jeannie deeply.”
Allan Kustok could get 45 years to life in prison. Sentencing is scheduled for April 17.