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Man accused of stabbing man 61 times testifies it was self defense
By Christopher Placek | Daily Herald Staff

Joseph Biedermann,


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Published: 7/9/2009 1:05 PM | Updated: 7/9/2009 10:21 PM

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Joseph Biedermann took the stand in his murder trial Thursday, claiming he acted in self defense when he stabbed Terrence Hauser 61 times the morning of March 5, 2008.

Biedermann testified he was fending off an attempted sexual assault by Hauser, whom he had met hours before at a bar near the Barrington Lakes Apartment Complex in the 2200 block of Hassell Road in Hoffman Estates, where both men lived.

Closing arguments begin Friday in Rolling Meadows Courtroom 109.

Biedermann said Hauser invited him to his apartment for drinks after the bartender refused to serve Biedermann. Biedermann, who admitted he is an alcoholic, claims he passed out on Hauser's couch, only to be awakened later by Hauser threatening him and holding a 4-foot-long sword to his neck.

Biedermann testified Hauser threatened to kill Biedermann if he screamed, which Biedermann said he initially took as a joke.

But according to Biedermann, Hauser then replied, "You understand me?"

"At that point I knew he was serious," Biedermann said. "I was in big trouble."

Biedermann said Hauser threatened to sexually assault him, then held him around the neck and tried to stab him in the stomach with another weapon, an 16-inch dagger.

Biedermann testified he escaped Hauser's grasp, gained control of the weapon and stabbed Hauser as many times as he could. There were no witnesses.

Before he passed out, Biedermann testified, he and Hauser were drinking wine and talking, mostly about sports, when Hauser asked Biedermann if he liked pornography and then said he had "kiddie porn."

Moments later Hauser said he was just kidding, Biedermann told the jury.

An analysis of Hauser's computer by police showed he had accessed Web sites that contained child pornography but had not downloaded images.

Biedermann testified he left Hauser's apartment and tried to call 911 but the call dropped.

Anna Olesckiewicz, Biedermann's girlfriend, also testified Thursday, saying she awoke at about 3 a.m. to Biedermann banging on the front door of the apartment they shared. She opened it to find him covered in blood and with a cut on his right forearm.

"He said to me, 'Call 911, call 911,'" Olesckiewicz said.

She told the court that Biedermann was in shock, and she wanted him to take a shower to calm down. She helped him take off his bloody clothes and she put them in bowls so he wouldn't scatter blood all over the apartment, she said.

When Biedermann was still bleeding after the shower, they drove to St. Alexius Medical Center in Hoffman Estates for treatment.

Olesckiewicz called 911 from the hospital. In an interview with police, she reported she told Biedermann to call police, but he refused, Hoffman Estates Police Detective Craig Kristufek testified. He said Olesckiewicz also told him it took a while to convince Biedermann to go to the hospital.

Another Hoffman Estates Police officer, Jason Currie, testified Biedermann never mentioned an attempted sexual assault while they were at the hospital. But on cross examination by defense attorney Sam Adam Jr., Currie said Biedermann was shouting statements: "I did not do anything wrong," and "I was only defending myself."