Scott Peters, the Holiday Hills man who shot and wounded two McHenry County deputies as they made a well-being check at his home last October, was sentenced today to 135 years in prison.
During today’s sentencing the eight-year-old son of Deputy Khalia Satkiewicz, one of the wounded officers, described his thoughts at first seeing his mother in the hospital and wanting to give her a hug.
“When I saw her in the bed I felt very sad … I felt mad at the man who shot my mommy,” said Nicholas Satkiewicz as his tears filled the courtroom.
Peters, 52, who was found guilty in April of 15 counts of attempted murder of a peace officer, aggravated battery with a firearm and aggravated discharge of a firearm at a peace officer, sat stoic as his sentence was read.
Just after 1 a.m. Oct 16, Peters fired shots from an assault rifle at Satkiewicz and Deputy Dwight Maness thorough a closed front door.
He then opened the door and chased them, still shooting, as they ran for cover in the darkness. He struck and seriously wounded the deputies. He also fired shots at a third deputy, Eric Luna, who was not injured. Peters then led authorities on a 16-hour manhunt before being arrested.
Satkiewicz’s 13-year-old daughter Sierra said seeing her mom wounded and crying for the first time in the hospital was “heartbreaking.”
“My mother didn’t deserve any of this,” she said.
As the children read their statements Peters sat without emotion, however, his wife Lisa, quietly wiped away tears.
Robert Satkiewicz, an Illinois State Police Master Sergeant, described what Peters did that night — hiding behind a door and shooting at officers who went to his home to help his own wife and daughter– as “hurtful, destructive and cowardice.”
“You are lucky I wasn’t there, you wouldn’t be here today,” he told Peters. “You are a domestic terrorist and should be treated as such. … “I pray you never see the light of day outside prison walls again.”
Deputy Khalia Satkiewicz said “Nightmare cannot begin to describe the terror I felt that night.”
“The night turned into an ambush that was meant to kill us … His agenda was clear, he was hellbent on killing us,” she said adding that she saw her children’s faces before her as she ran for cover.
“We should be dead … God was with us that night. “Evil showed itself on Oct. 16 in the form of Scott Peters,” she said. “The physical wounds will heal but the mental and emotional scars will be with me my entire lifetime.”
Maness’ colleague McHenry County Police Sergeant Travis McDonald, read a statement written by Maness who could not attend the sentencing. He suffered new injuries this week to his right leg following a procedure to help repair his left leg and was in the hospital. He has so far undergone 15 surgeries.
Maness wrote that for his whole life, including serving 20 years in the military and as a police officer the last seven, he has been a “warrior” and has “(stood) up for people who cannot stand up for themselves.”
Calling Peters a “coward” and a “sociopath” Maness wrote that Peters “has no honor” and “does not know what it is like to sacrifice.
“It is all about him,” Maness wrote. He added that the injuries sustained in the ambush have caused him to lose “every ounce of dignity” and he credited his wife Sue with caring for him.
The events of that night have caused him to be “shut out form the outside world” and he has suffered greatly physically, mentally and emotionally.
However, he said, the incident had brought the department closer together and that after that day deputies “held their children a little tighter and told their spouses they loved them a little more.”
Despite his injuries, Maness said “I am a warrior and will continue to walk the warrior’s path.”
His wife, Sue Maness, described getting the phone call at 2 a.m. that her husband had been shot.
“I was paralyzed with fear and sick to my stomach,” she said.
“My husband is the epitome of what a soldier, a police officer and a man should be … (you are) coward hiding behind a door. What kind of a man is that?
Before the hearing got underway, the prosecutor played an audio recording of a phone call Peters made to his wife after being found guilty on April 30. On the recording Peters tells his wife that he was found guilty and asks her to find him a new lawyer. He made claims that his attorneys, jail officers and the jury were all against him and that he was not treated fairly. He also accused police officers of taking the front door off and shooting more bullet holes into it, setting him up.
“The whole thing is rigged,” he repeatedly told his wife.
Often referring to one another as “baby and “honey” Peters told his wife he was sorry and that she didn’t have to stay with him.
Before sentencing his public defense attorney Angelo Mourelatos said Peters may suffer some mental health issues including depression, delusions and post traumatic stress disorder. He also said a long prison term could be a hardship on his wife and 13-year-old daughter.
Peters apologized to all the families who were hurt by what he did. He said he has “been stick to my stomach ever since” that night.
“In the end there were families on each side of the door at my house that night,” Peters said. “I pray everyone will recover from it.”
Before handing down, what is essentially a life sentence, Prather told Peters that he had never taken responsibility nor shown any remorse for what he did. She also called his accusations in the phone call to his wife in which he said the officers staged the crime scene by shooting bullets into his front door as “ludicrous.”
Prather said the responsibility of what happened “lays right at your feet.”
“There was no nonsense in this case, no lies, the only lies I heard in this case came from you,” Prather said.