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"Engagement" To Drew Peterson Was "Stunt"

A woman who has just broken up with Drew Peterson says, contrary to what he wants the world to believe, they were never engaged.

Christina Raines, 24, removed her belongings from Drew Peterson's home as the woman's father, Ernest Raines, looked on, along with an Early Show camera crew and officers from Peterson's former department.

Peterson, 55, had reached the rank of sergeant with the Bolingbrook, Ill. police.

Peterson's fourth wife, Stacey Peterson disappeared in October 2007. She was 23. Peterson hasn't been charged, but authorities have said they are investigating the disappearance as a possible homicide.

Peterson has denied any involvement in the disappearance and has maintained he believes she left him for another man.

Authorities also are investigating the death of Peterson's third wife, Kathleen Savio, whose body was found in an empty bathtub in her house in 2004. After Stacy Peterson disappeared, authorities reopened the investigation of Savio's death, which was originally classified as an accident. Her body was exhumed and her death was reclassified as a homicide following an autopsy.

On Friday, Peterson initially refused to allow Christina to take her belongings from her home, despite Ernest's angry demands that Peterson do so, as Early Show cameras rolled from a distance. Ernest, angrily shouting through the front door to Peterson that he was "fooling with the wrong guy," called police.

Peterson then let Christina remove her things from his home.

Referring to the incident on The Early Show Monday, Ernest quoted an old Johnny Cash tune in saying he and Christina had beaten the devil. "That's what we did," Ernest told co-anchor Julie Chen "We beat the devil."

An emotional Christina, frequently pausing for long periods, told Chen she first met Peterson when she was 15, but met him again more recently at a bar.

Ernest says Peterson began pursuing a relationship with his daughter, who wound up moving in with Peterson.

"He was very kind to me," and was never violent toward her, Christina told Chen. He was also a "great father," Christina added.

Christina said he didn't "feel comfortable" answering Chen's questions about Stacey Peterson or any possible Drew Peterson role in her disappearance. Christina said she had met Stacey Peterson.

"I'm a good person and I have a good heart," Christina remarked. "And instead of following with my head, I followed with my heart," and allowed the relationship with Drew Peterson to grow. "I don't love him," though at one point, "I thought I did," Christina continued.

When asked how she had come to get engaged to Peterson, Christina responded, "It was never an engagement."

"What was it, then?"

"It was more like a stunt."

"A stunt?"


"On whose part?"

"On Drew's, so he could be in the media," Christina said. "He had told me that his lawyer had wanted him to be in the media and wanted to propose to someone at a restaurant."

Peterson encouraged Christina to become part of the setup, Christina told Chen, saying, "That's how it went down, but I would not go with it. I would not go along with it. I told him 'no.' And he had said, 'Well, if it comes out that I am engaged to someone, it's not really true." '

"So," Chen asked, "you were never engaged to him, is that what you're saying?"

"No," Christina replied, "I was never engaged to him."

"But he was putting it out there that he was engaged?"

"That he was engaged."

"To you?"

"He had told me that he never said it was me, (that) he never said that he was engaged to me. But I have heard that, like, off camera, he had told a producer, a publicist, that it was me."

Christina said it was several days of conversation with an ex-boyfriend with whom she'd been living, Mike, that led to her moving out of Peterson's house.

"(Mike) was telling me, you know, 'this is not right. He's not a good guy.' (It) just kind of opened up my eyes. A lot of things made sense. And he guided me from Monday through Thursday. And Thursday's when Mike had asked me to move back in."

CBS News legal analyst Lisa Bloom told Chen Drew Peterson "can get engaged, but legally, he cannot get married. He is still legally married to Stacey Peterson, who is missing, been missing for over a year. And her clothes are still in that house. ... They're still in the closets. She's still a presence in that house."