Sarah Kustok defends father at murder trial

March 10, 2014 (BRIDGEVIEW, Ill.)

Sarah Kustok's testimony wrapped up the case for the defense, and closing arguments are set for Tuesday. She was the final witness in the trial that is now into its fourth week. As relatives on both sides of her family looked on, Sarah Kustok was on the stand for about 45 minutes.

Since her mother's death, Sarah Kustok speaks with her father, Allan Kustok, several times a week, but never about the murder case. On Monday, the former Chicago sports reporter didn't have a choice but to talk about it as she took the witness stand for the defense.

In a quiet voice, Sarah occasionally choked up when she spoke about her very close family. Sarah recalled the day her mother Jeanie died when she told investigators it was inconceivable that her dad would kill her mom. When asked by prosecutors if she ever asked her dad why he never called 911 after finding his wife shot, Sarah answered, "no."

During the past couple years, Sarah says she has learned about her dad's multiple affairs. Defense attorney Rick Bueke asked her if that information has changed her opinion about her dad's innocence. Sarah replied, "I don't condone it, I'm not ok with that, no, it doesn't change my opinion." Prosecutors allege Kustok was motivated to kill his wife because he was having an unhappy marriage.

Sarah Kustok told the jury her parents had a happy marriage, she also testified that she does not believe her 58-year-old mother would commit suicide. Sarah called her mom the "most selfless person. . . who would do anything for anyone."

Sarah and her mom texted and spoke to each other several times a day. Sarah told jurors, "she was always a mother first, but she was my very best friend."

While she often stayed with her mom when her dad was traveling for work, Sarah says she was not aware her mother owned a gun. Earlier in the day, two of Jeanie Kustok's former co-workers testified that Jeanie mentioned to them that she knew there was a gun in their Orland Park home.

The two coworkers who knew about the gun were teachers who used to work with Jeanie Kustok. One of them also testified that she could not believe Jeanie Kustok would commit suicide because she loved her students and her children too much.

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