CHICAGO – Prosecutors could subpoena missing suburban Chicago mom Lisa Stebic's two young children to help provide information about her disappearance nearly four months ago, according to a report.
Stebic's daughter, 11, and son, 12, were the last to see her alive on April 30, along with her husband, Craig Stebic.
“Obviously, it would be in the best interest of the children to not have to go before a grand jury and possibly be traumatized in such a big, scary environment in a courtroom like that but we understand that police have to do what they have to do," said Melanie Greenburg, Lisa's cousin.
Police plan to meet with prosecutors this week to decide what to do next. They recently discussed using a neutral child advocate to interview the children instead of having them testify before a grand jury, but Craig Stebic and his lawyer declined.
Craig Stebic said he was working in the backyard of the family's Plainfield, Ill., home, and the children were out, when Lisa Stebic disappeared. Police named Craig Stebic a person of interest in the disappearance of his wife in July.
Former Florida prosecutor Ken Padowitz said while it is unusual to subpoena children, investigators need all information available to get to the bottom of the case.
“Clearly, every rock should be turned over and examined and looked at to help solve this case. And if that means that the children need to be subpoenaed, then absolutely the subpoenas should be issued and investigators should question those children,” Padowitz said.
Meanwhile, Lisa's family is considering putting up billboards in Wisconsin to seek information about her disappearance, which offers a $64,000 reward.
Laurrie Bingheimer, a neighbor of the Stebics, supports talking to the children about what they might know.
“I really feel that we need to try something different,” Bingheimer said.
A judge granted Craig Stebic's request to dismiss his petition seeking a divorce from his missing wife, Lisa, in July.
Craig Stebic filed the petition a day after Plainfield, Ill., police named him a person of interest. His lawyer called the timing of the filing insignificant.
Stebic filed for divorce Jan. 16, claming the couple had barely spoken in six months, and lived separate lives under the same roof. The divorce petition cited irreconcilable differences.
Both parents sought joint custody of their children, with Lisa Stebic as the residential custodial parent; child support; and division of their marital property.
WFLD FOX Chicago's Craig Wall contributed to this report.