New video released in bartender beating

Thursday, April 12, 2007

Friends of off-duty Chicago Police Officer Anthony Abatte, who is accused in the brutal beating of a Chicago bartender, allegedly tried to bribe the woman.

On January 19, almost an hour after 24-year-old bartender was kicked and punched by a man police identify as off-duty Chicago Police Officer Anthony Abbate, two of the cop's close friends show up at the Northwest Side bar, Jesse's Short Stop Inn, to talk with Karolina Obryka. That exchange, too, was caught on surveillance tape.

The bartender's attorney, Terry Ekl, said the man, Gary, and woman, Patty, attempted to bribe Obryka.

"At one point of time, Gary and Patty conveyed an offer to Karolina that if she agreed not to prosecute Abbatte, that Abbatte would pay her medical bills and any out-of-pocket expenses she had," said Ekl.

No money is ever exchanged on tape nor can you hear the conversation between Karolina and the two people who were allegedly offering her a bribe on behalf of Abbate. But, Ekl believes what the tape bolsters the ongoing criminal case against Abbate.

"This is what Karolina and the bar owner have been telling us from the beginning that these things happened. The fact that there happens to be corroboration doesn't surprise me at all," said Ekl.

Ekl said Gary is a streets and sanitation worker and Patty is a former employee at Jesse's Short Stop Inn. According to Ekl, Gary and Patty are seen on their cell phones walking in and out. Ekl is convinced they were talking and taking directions from Abbate.

"We will get phone records if the state's attorney's office doesn't have them already. And I will be absolutely shocked if they weren't on the phone with Abbatte in that period," said Ekl.

Abbate was charged with felony aggravated battery in the attack. He is out on bond.

Meanwhile, the investigation in the allegations of bribery is ongoing, but Abbatte and his friends could be charged with interfering with a police investigation and intimidating a witness.

Karolina also plans to file a civil suit against Abbate and the City of Chicago with the week.

Video of the bar attack:

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