The hand of God?

Drew Peterson’s conviction for murdering his third wife, Kathleen Savio, may have been upheld by the Illinois Supreme Court on Thursday, but did divine intervention have something to do with it?

It’s a humdinger of a story.

Pull up a chair.

“It was the hand of God who helped solve the Savio case,” said Pastor Neil Schori, who had been a marital counselor to Peterson’s still missing fourth wife, Stacy — who had confided to him two months before she disappeared she believed Peterson had killed his third wife.

What went unreported until now: Schori’s admission to Sneed he tried twice without success the day after Stacy went missing to inform the state police what Stacy had told him confidentially two months earlier.

“That’s when the unexpected and weird and seemingly impossible happened,” said Schori, who had been serendipitously serving on a Will County grand jury for the past 10 months.

So what happened?


Frustrated by the inability to get the police to respond, Schori was doing jury duty the next day — when a “boisterous state police sergeant named Pat Collins came into our grand jury and loudly stated: ‘Ladies and gentlemen of the grand jury. Will County has a Scott Peterson case on its hands!’ ” (Referring to the infamous Scott Peterson wife murderer case in California.)

“I felt like a fool, but I raised my hand and shouted to Sgt. Collins:

“ ‘I cannot hear what you are about to share. I need to talk to you now. I need to tell you something I know!’

“So they stopped the proceeding,” said Schori.

“I walked out of the jury section. I told Sgt. Collins I tried to connect with the state police twice in the past days and no one called back. I told him Stacy told me Drew had killed his third wife, Kathleen Savio, and he looked at me with such shock.

“Then he said, “Do not go anywhere else.” They then drove to the state police district.

“I finally got to tell Stacy’s story. How ironic was it that I’d never served on a grand jury before? What are the chances I’d become a key witness — and that it would happen that way,” he said.

Pastor Neil Schori.

Sneed contacted the state police for response. “Because the case is open and an ongoing investigation, we are not releasing any information about the case,” said Master Sgt. Jason Bradley, a state police spokesman.

Ironically, Schori and attorney Joel Brodsky, who represented Peterson at the Savio murder trial, have become friends and frequent dinner companions.

“When Pastor Schori told me about the grand jury story, I was flabbergasted,” said Brodsky.

Schori, who claims he had been counseling both Drew and Stacy, told Sneed: “Stacy just blurted it out. He did it. Drew killed Kathleen. I asked a lot of questions. She described in great detail what happened the night Savio was killed. Stacy never said she was afraid, but her body language seemed fearful.

“And Stacy kept looking over her shoulder. She said she was followed by the Bolingbrook police on a regular basis.”

“The Schori story did seem to be divine intervention at work,” said Will County State’s Attorney James Glasgow, who prosecuted Peterson. “And now that Drew’s son, Stephen, has come around and seen the light — we might be able to sit and chat with him,” added Glasgow. “The search for Stacy is still ongoing.

“There is evidence we weren’t able to obtain at the time, and with his help we might be able to do so.”

The Peterson file . . .

Sneed has learned attorney Joel Brodskywho represented Drew Peterson in the Kathleen Savio murder trial amid later criticism by Peterson his representation was ineffective, just sent his former client a letter following an Illinois Supreme Court ruling Thursday upholding Peterson’s murder conviction.

It read:

“Dear Drew,

I said I would write you after the Supreme Court ruled. I hate to say I told you so, but now that the Illinois Supreme Court has ruled I did nothing wrong in representing you, I have to say it. I told you that day in 2012 it was a waste to bring an ineffective assistance claim but you didn’t listen to me. So be it. You’re a grown man and you’re stuck with the result of your choices. Other than that, you have been convicted, and I have been exonerated, by the Supreme Court, and I have no regrets. Very truly yours, Joel Brodsky.”

Sneedlings . . .

Today’s birthdays: Andrea Bocelli, 59; Bonnie Hunt, 56; and Thiago Silva, 33.