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Lawyer: Stacy Peterson got racy text message

/ Source: The Associated Press

Authorities investigating the disappearance of a former suburban Chicago police officer's wife have obtained a warrant seeking information to identify who sent a racy text message to her cell phone.

Drew Peterson's attorney, Joel Brodsky, said Thursday that a message sent to Stacy Peterson's cell phone in September shows she was having an affair and lends credence to Drew Peterson's contention she left him for another man.

"This is obviously sent by a lover of Stacy prior to her disappearance. Drew did not send it," Brodsky said of the text message he said was sent Sept. 20.

Stacy Peterson vanished Oct. 28. In November, police labeled the 23-year-old's disappearance a possible homicide and named Drew Peterson, a former Bolingbrook police sergeant, a suspect. He has not been charged and denies any involvement in her disappearance.

Stacy Peterson's sister and a close family friend could not be reached for comment Thursday. But they and others have maintained that she was not having an affair and had been contemplating divorcing her husband.

In the message, the anonymous author referred to Stacy Peterson in a two-sentence message as "my love" and thanked her for a sexual encounter the previous evening, according to a transcript provided by Brodsky.

Brodsky said his client turned over the phone to state police Dec. 20 after discovering the message. A private detective hired by Peterson tracked the message to the Sprint Nextel Web site and on Jan. 3, a judge signed an Illinois State Police search warrant for relevant cell phone and online records.

Authorities have declined to comment on the investigation.

Sprint Nextel spokesman Dave DeVries said anyone can use the company's Web site to text-message subscribers without being required to log in or open an account. He declined to comment on whether it is possible to track who sent messages.