A judge has upheld a series of videotaped statements in which Keith Mackowiak reportedly admitting killing an elderly Seneca couple.

Judge H. Chris Ryan Jr. ruled Tuesday that even if Mackowiak had been drinking or using drugs prior his arrest on July 11, 2007, the substances didn't keep him from making a voluntary statement.

Bottom line: the taped statements will be heard when Mackowiak, 42, of Seneca, stands trial for murder.

Prosecutors, who are seeking the death penalty, allege he killed Catherine and Aloysius Twardowski during a break-in of their home.

Mackowiak showed no emotion and did not speak as Ryan delivered his ruling.

Defense lawyers had argued in favor of throwing out the lengthy (7½-8½ hours) statement that Mackowiak gave in separate interviews on July 11, 13 and 16, primarily on the grounds that Mackowiak had been on a drug and/or drinking binge that precluded an admissible statement.

Those allegations, said state's attorney Brian Towne, "absolutely have not been supported by the evidence in the case."

Town specifically noted that the tapes, which were not shown in open court, showed Mackowiak "not slurring, not falling into walls."

Public defender Tim Cappellini said Mackowiak's entire arrest was bad, noting that Mackowiak was picked up on a Cook County warrant, not for murder charges, and that this tainted the ensuing events.

Ryan rejected that.

"From the defendant's standpoint, he might not like it," Ryan allowed, "but it's not police misconduct."

When Mackowiak actually goes to trial is anybody's guess. Immediately after Tuesday's ruling, Cappellini advised Ryan of his intent to file a motion for change of venue - that is, getting the trial moved to another county.

Ryan scheduled a status hearing for Nov. 13.

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