Fiancee Leaves Drew Peterson After 'Nightline' Story

Suspected murderer tells ABC News a "Nightline" story ended his relationship.

Jan. 30, 2009— -- Drew Peterson told ABC News today that his fiancee dumped him as they watched his interview Thursday on "Nightline." Peterson told anchor Martin Bashir that his fiancee called him a liar, packed her bags, and left. Peterson told Bashir, "The engagement is over because of your interviews."

On Thursday night, Glenn Selig, the former police officer's publicist, called the "Nightline" story fair. Joel Brodsky, Peterson's lawyer, said he believed his client came across as "forthcoming."

ABC News spoke to Ernie Raines, Christina Raines' father, who also watched Thursday's "Nightline" interview. He said it was an accurate portrayal of Peterson and says it definitely contributed to his daughter's decision.

"How dare Drew say he will just get tired of my daughter and then move on!" Ernie Raines said. "Who does he think he is? He's nobody!"

Earlier today Ernie Raines called the Bolingbrook Police Department from outside of Peterson's Illinois home. According to Lt. Ken Teppel, he went to Peterson's house this morning to help his daughter move out. Teppel said Peterson refused to let Ernie Raines inside at which point the father called the police. The officers arrived and began removing Christina Raines' property in plastic bags.

During Thursday night's "Nightline" interview, Peterson said he understood why his future fifth wife's loved ones are concerned for her safety. But Peterson, who is a suspect in the disappearance of his fourth wife Stacy and the death of his third wife Kathleen Savio in their Bolingbrook, Ill., home, said that "I'm a good guy."

Peterson's first two wives have complained about him being very controlling and, before her disappearance, Stacy allegedly told her minister that Peterson confessed to killing Savio.

"All of which didn't happen," Peterson told "Nightline" in his first interview since his engagement. "But I will acknowledge that I would have concerns if I was the friends and family of this young girl.

"She likes me. She likes me a lot," he said of his fiancée Christina Raines, 23. "I'm good to her and I treat her better than she's ever been treated."

Despite still being legally married to Stacy, Peterson, 55, said during the interview that says he is OK with getting remarried and is deeply in love. The couple hadn't set a date at the time of the interview, but Peterson had said they would wed this year. In the state of Illinois, Peterson can be granted a divorce on the basis of abandonment and is free to remarry if Stacy Peterson doesn't respond to a court submission within 30 days.

"I like being married," he said. "I like having a family. ... I enjoy belonging to somebody."

But Peterson acknowledged that, while he liked the early romantic stages of each relationship, he eventually lost interest when "there was no excitement in the marriage anymore."

"I'm basically attracted to young, beautiful women with good personalities," he said. "That's what I'm attracted to."

While Raines, who is 32 years younger than Peterson, is reluctant to speak publicly, Peterson has been proclaiming his innocence for more than a year to anyone who will listen. He has not been charged in either case.

"It's pretty terrifying," Peterson said of all the negative attention. "You know, you're in your house and you're under suspicion for horrendous activity and next thing you know, you've got every news crew get in your face all over America."

But some people believe that Peterson enjoys the attention, joking with the media and the public and holding impromptu news conferences.

"I think dealing with them, in such a manner of humor, was the way I was able to cope with it all," he admitted. "It's kind of comical. I have fun with it. I'll go out somewhere and I'll be recognized and it's just like, I think my, my personality's gone from sinister to celebrity."

But Illinois state prosecutors aren't laughing, and they say they expect to resolve their investigation soon.

Drew Peterson's Many Marriages

Before becoming a suspect in a homicide and a household name, Peterson was an undercover police officer in Bolingbrook and a father of four.

"I was undercover actually for a total of five years," Peterson said. "You basically spent your day working a con and you were getting people to believe you were something other than what you actually were and it was fun. It was exhilarating. I think the most sadistic fun you had in the whole part of the job, the look on people's faces when you arrested them and they found out you were actually a [policeman]."

Peterson married high school sweetheart Carol at the age of 20. They had two sons but the union collapsed after he admitted to numerous affairs.

"I'm a grown man," he said. "I can do right and wrong but I was so attracted to the attention of these women that I just succumbed to it."

Two years later, he was back at the altar but was unfaithful to his second wife, as well.

"The big joke at one particular time was you had to lie to your girlfriend to see your wife," he said. "That's how crazy it was."

Marriage No. 2 went the way of the first and both women have said Peterson was domineering and unfaithful. He was still married to his second wife when he began dating Savio.

Although she was 10 years younger than Peterson, it appeared that he'd met his match. But the union was short-lived and toward the end of their relationship, the police were called to the house on 18 separate occasions.

"I was a smart ass," Peterson said. "She'd get mad at me for something. She'd be going off on a rampage and instead of calming her down ... [I] would set her off even worse."

By the late 1990s, Peterson was already cheating on his third wife. As bitter divorce proceedings with Savio were finalized in 2002, she wrote to Illinois Assistant State's Attorney Elizabeth Fragale, expressing fears that her estranged husband might kill her. But Peterson seemed more interested in his latest girlfriend, a young hotel receptionist.

"I said, 'let's you and I just go out' and she said, 'OK, that's fine,'" Peterson recalled. "I said, 'Do you mind that I am 47 years old?' and she goes, 'Oh, no, do you mind that I am 17?'

"I thought she was in her mid 20s or something like that," he said, laughing. "And I real quick looked through my law books to see if that was kosher, and the age of consent in the state of Illinois is 17 and the relationship developed and we started going out. We got a lot of looks at the time and [there was] a lot of controversy over our relationship."

They were married within the year. Soon after, Peterson says, he discovered Savio's body in her home after she didn't return his phone calls.

Kathleen Savio's Death, Stacy Peterson's Disappearance

"I heard screaming upstairs and her friend Mary went upstairs and she was dead in the bathtub," Peterson said. "I checked for life signs and I knew at that particular time I didn't belong there, so I called for additional police units to show up and take charge of the scene."

His first concern, he said, was for their children.

"I got them out of there as quickly as possible after it happened. They went back for their things and it was kind of emotional but it was kind of like, what can you do? Life goes on."

An autopsy found that Savio had fallen into the bath and drowned. By that point, Stacy Peterson had already given birth to a child and, a year later, in 2005, she had a second. But in 2006, she lost her half-sister to colon cancer and was devastated.

"She took it very bad," Peterson said. "We had her [see] a psychologist and on medication. ... And the relationships towards me and the kids and everything started breaking down at that time."

In October 2007, he says, his wife seemed to take matters into her own hands.

"She said she was leaving," Peterson said. "She found somebody else. She'll be gone for a while. And I can't remember. It's been played over again and again in my head her exact words. ... Basically, the gist of it was that she found someone else. She was leaving. She'd be gone for a while.

"I remember the snottiness in her voice," he continued. "I was like, 'What am I supposed to do?' And she said, 'deal with it.' And that was pretty much the conversation."

As for whether he was surprised that a mother would consider abandoning her children, he said, "Stuff happens. Mothers kill their kids. Mothers kill their spouses. Mothers do strange things.

"They become emotionally distraught and it becomes too much for them. They are overloaded. Millions of things. I've talked to many psychiatrists-psychologists about this. It happens. Is it unlikely? Yeah. It's very unlikely, but it happens."

The police launched a missing persons inquiry. They never located Stacy Peterson but they did find some intriguing correspondence.

She had sent an e-mail to friends prior to her disappearance, saying, "As I mature with age, I'm finding that the relationship I'm in is controlling, manipulative and somewhat abusive."

"That doesn't even sound like something she would say," said Peterson, "so I really question the origin of that e-mail."

'Something He Fabricated'

The minister at the local church also emerged, claiming he knew a different story about how Peterson's third wife Kathleen had come to die in the bath. Neil Shory says Stacy Peterson told him her husband confessed to killing his third wife.

"Right. I heard that, but again, wouldn't you seek out authorities if you heard that coming out of somebody's mouth?" Peterson asked. "And I really question whether she really said it or it's something he fabricated."

Peterson claims the minister's story has changed since he initially came forward. But if it is true, why would Stacy go and say such a thing about him?

"Maybe she was planning to divorce me," Peterson said. "Was she doing this to get rid of me? What better way to get rid of me than to say I did something that I didn't do. Have me locked up. You know, she gets the whole ball waxed then. She don't even have to bother going through a divorce. She gets everything and I'm in prison."

Another friend came forward, claiming Stacy had said something that echoed what Kathleen Savio had written to the state attorney's office during their bitter divorce.

Stacy's friend Pam Bosco claims to have been told by Stacy, "I love you. If anything happens to me, he killed me. It wasn't an accident."

Peterson also denies this. "I think this is something that these people heard Kathleen's camp talking about and they basically adopted into what they were saying."

With Stacy Peterson still missing, police decided to exhume Savio's body. A second autopsy concluded that Peterson's third wife had been murdered and that the scene had been staged to seem like an accident.

The state attorney has named Peterson as the prime suspect in the death of his third wife and the disappearance of his fourth. But he's already making plans to marry his fifth.

He says that he and Raines haven't talked about his previous relationships. "We stay away from it to this day," he said, adding that she knows about his past.

"I mean, who in the United States doesn't know about my entire life and my marital history?" he said.

He says Raines is much better off now than she was in previous abusive relationships.

"On many occasions, she's looked at me and she says, 'You know, you treat me so good, there's no way that you could've been involved in anything like this, there's no way.' And I believe she wholeheartedly believes that."