Man accused in ex's boyfriend's murder allegedly sought hitman

January 14, 2013 1:45:26 PM PST
Murder suspect Joseph Spitalli tried from jail to hire a hit man to kill his former girlfriend so she couldn't testify against him ? and offered to use his tax refund to pay for the slaying, DuPage County prosecutors alleged Monday.

Spitalli, 34, is being without bond for the murder of Teymur Huseynli and the kidnapping of his ex-girlfriend, Kristina Baltrimaviciene, 28, of Darien.

Police say November 16 Darien police responded to a battery call on Wildwood Court. Huseynli was pronounced dead on the lawn, the victim of an apparent knife wound.

Police say sometime before midnight, Baltrimaviciene and her boyfriend Huseynli left her apartment to walk a dog. Police say Spitalli confronted the couple while on their walk and an argument between Huseynli and Spitalli ensued.

Police say Spitalli, 6'4", 300 lbs., grabbed Huseynli from behind and slit his throat, then forced Baltrimaviciene into his car at knifepoint and drove to his home, then they went to Spitalli's parents' home where the police were called.

Media cameras rolled Monday as Spitalli stood calmly in the courtroom while his attorney entered not guilty pleas on his behalf to charges of murder, kidnapping and aggravated battery.

After being charged and jailed in the killing, Spitalli allegedly tried to recruit a hit man to murder Baltrimaviciene and his former roommate to keep them from testifying against him, prosecutors alleged in a court filing.

Spitalli secretly was recorded by police talking to another jail inmate about staging a car crash or drug overdose to kill Baltrimaviciene.

Spitalli also disclosed plans to escape from the DuPage County Jail by hiding in a shower room, then attacking and overpowering a jail guard, documents indicate.

He later was recorded calling an undercover police officer posing as a hitman to set up a jailhouse visit to discuss his alleged plans, according to court documents.

Spitalli allegedly told the jail inmate he could pay for the purported hit man with a tax refund he was expecting or with funds raised to pay for a private attorney, documents show.

Questioned by sheriff's deputies last weekend, Spitalli allegedly admitted talking about killing his former girlfriend but insisted he wasn't serious about it.

A judge has barred Spitalli from using jail telephones except to consult with his court-appointed attorneys. Spitalli, who is jailed without bond, also was barred from having any visitors.

Last week, Spitalli's attorney tried to bar media cameras from his arraignment, but a judge overruled those objections.

Judge Daniel Guerin also rejected other requests that Spitalli be allowed to skip Monday's hearing to avoid media photographers in the courtroom ? or that he be allowed to wear street clothes and no handcuffs.

During his court appearance, Spitalli wore orange jail-issue fatigues and his hands were cuffed at his waist.

He currently is being held in segregation in the jail after allegedly threatening the jail inmate who tipped authorities to his purported plans to hire a hitman.

The Sun-Times Media Wire contributed to this report.