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Gapers Block published from April 22, 2003 to Jan. 1, 2016. The site will remain up in archive form. Please visit Third Coast Review, a new site by several GB alumni.
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Monday, February 26

Gapers Block

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Jimbo2K7 / June 23, 2009 2:16 PM

There is absolutely nothing lower than a crooked cop, but Abate managed to go one step beyond even that. The only thing lower than that is the clearly corrupt Cook County Circuit Judge John Fleming.
What a proud day to live in chicago!

snuh / June 23, 2009 2:39 PM

Unfuckingbelievable. way to punish Anthony Abbate the same way my mom punished me for not washing the dishes when I was 10 years old.
Drunken 250 lb Abbate was afraid and intimidated by a 115 lb woman! That was his defense, and the judge was stupid enough to buy it! Oh, I wouldn't say I'm making a threat, but at 120 lb, Abbate better not cross my path.

Mike Tyson / June 23, 2009 2:47 PM

I will use this judgement and forward a copy to my lawyer for use a precedence when I find the urge to beat someone within inches of death.

jen / June 23, 2009 3:35 PM

Chris Brown got 5 years probation and 180 hours community service; you tell me if you think Abbate's sentence was fair.

eee / June 23, 2009 4:25 PM

I agree with everyone above. Ridiculous.

Carrie / June 24, 2009 12:44 AM

Really? I mean really? this case was so cut and dry to everyone, but the judge apparently. Let's not consider how he's changed the bartender's life, let's not consider that maybe he has a drinking problem. Nope, nope, what'd he get- anger management classes and probation, right? Nice work. Once again it's painfully clear to everyone how corrupt Chicago truly is. I don't know how it all works, but I think this would be a good time for Jody Weis to step up and say something...and you know maybe say that he doesn't agree with the verdict. ugh

A. Lewellen / June 24, 2009 12:56 AM

Truly sad and a terrible reflection on our so called justice system. Honestly I don't think Jody Weiss has any idea of what he has gotten himself into and will get the hell out of dodge as soon as he can.

printdude / June 24, 2009 7:48 AM

One more reason to fear the police.
As someone that has been arrested for "Resisting arrest" (no other crime) and beaten, when I reported this and wanted action taken against the officers, I found myself battling a system that more often than not, protects the officers and not the citizen.
What I was told is this: the officers whom I filed a complaint against had to have three or more such citations before any actions would be taken. And no, they were not disclosing how many citations had been filed previous to mine.
This is Chicago.

Pete / June 24, 2009 9:06 AM

Here's a quote from the judge, John Fleming: "If I believed sending Anthony Abbate to prison would stop people from getting drunk and hitting other people, I'd sentence him to the maximum. But I don't believe that is the case." Oh, I see. You only have to go to jail if it's a deterrent to others, but not as punishment for your own wrongdoing. Let's all remember this next time Fleming is up for re-election.

Jake Gittes / June 24, 2009 9:14 AM

Forget it, people. It's Chinatown.

Guy Smiley / June 24, 2009 10:01 AM

So this is the "world class city" that Mayor Daley wants to showcase to the world by hosting the Olympics... He may want to rethink that.

Richard / June 24, 2009 10:13 AM

How do I feel about the verdict?

Business as usual in Chicago.

I am confused as to why people are surprised by this.

Is it this many peoples first time dealing with unjustice in Chicago's judicial system?

Unjustice is business as usual in Chicago.

devil's adv / June 24, 2009 10:25 AM

Just to weigh in on the side of the Judge:
He did find Abbate guilty of the crime, that should not be lost. Abbate is guilty of a felony. The judge did not buy Abbate's defense. Being guilty of a felony Abbate can not have a gun (kinda important to be a police officer). Abbate will suffer harm as a result, admittedly not as much punishment that I would like to see, but he will lose his job and has certainly been appropriately vilified.
The woman was not "beaten within inches of death", by her own admission she only had bumps and bruises (however miraculously). A judge cannot invent injuries suffered by the victim. I agree that the judge missed an opportunity to use a heavy sentence as a deterrent, but it's possible he thought prison time for a cop would spell some pretty serious safety issues for Abbate and prison guards alike once Abbate was sent into the clink.

Brubeck / June 24, 2009 10:37 AM

It's awful. It goes to show that you can be a small woman senselessly beaten up by a drunken man twice your size and still run into him at a grocery store only a month or two later.

Carrie / June 24, 2009 12:57 PM

@ devil's adv-- well said.

Bad Luck / June 24, 2009 1:10 PM

@ devil's adv - not well said.

How dare you bring up a scumbag cops "safety issue"!!!

What about the safety of the citizens of Chicago??

Today we have hundreds of cops on the street right now knowing that if they beat the shit out of someone then they will not go to jail.

This case will come up in the future. Chicago Cops are scumbags.

And when one of those scumbags beats the shit out of someone, I can hear the defense already, "Your honor, I'd like to present the People vs. Abbate".

The citizens of Chicago safety just took a couple steps backwards with this.

Guy Smiley / June 24, 2009 3:40 PM

Just as assaulting a cop carries a different penalty than assault a "regular" person, so should assault BY a cop carry a different set of rules than assault by a "regular person". Abbate was a representative of the law, was taught the law, and pretty much WAS the law. If anyone should be held to a different standard and punished harsher than "regular" people it's a cop who violates the very law he was sworn to protect. The "deterrent" should not be to deter regular citizens from getting drunk and starting fights, it should be to deter COPS from getting drunk and starting fights.

fluffy / June 24, 2009 6:00 PM

I agree with the Guy Smiley

spook / June 24, 2009 10:45 PM

"If I believed sending Anthony Abbate to prison would stop people from getting drunk and hitting other people, I'd sentence him to the maximum. But I don't believe that is the case."

This is why I didn't even want to read the news paper article on this after I heard about the "verdict" Its just so F*cking rank!

Oh, and dear Carrie, please find my personal Proclamation to you!!!

Now be it resolved that; As police officers are considered always on duty, and
its a police officer's duty to serve and protect, and
as some one who a little over half hour ago heard a women screaming, ran outside my house and, determined that a drunk creep wasn't actually helping his girl friend up off the ground but had in fact beat her down, and after calling the police who luckily immediately showed up and made the arrest, I say this to you
with utmost sincerity,
May You get brutality beaten by an authority figure in the place of another women like that bartender! Then some one can play devil's advocate

Finally, the coldest place in hell is reserved for those who( because its not them or some one they know) play "devil's advocate" against those who are physically abused!

This whole thing is just so disgusting! But now that I have calmed down a bit and uncapped a cold beer, I leave you with an
quote from our universal brother Hamlet. Because who else is there to quote from on a sweltering summer's night!

O, [John Fleming & Abbate's] offence is rank it smells to heaven;
It hath the primal eldest curse upon't!"

flange / June 25, 2009 9:37 AM

don't forget... on friday night a bunch of elderly chicago riot cops are having their reunion convention. clearly this was a sop to them. you don't want a bunch of baton-wielding seniors getting mad.

what, i'm going to be any more ashamed of this miserable city government? reached the limit long ago. the needle's been pegged for years.

madachode / June 25, 2009 10:02 AM

Everyone deserves a beating now and then to keep them in line.

Spook / June 25, 2009 10:02 AM

" on friday night a bunch of elderly chicago riot cops are having their reunion convention."

Not for the 68 democratic convention!?!

mike / June 25, 2009 12:54 PM

Indeed: p://,0,1860347.story

flange / June 25, 2009 12:56 PM

that's them, spook. it was in merge a week or so ago. lemme look...

(i don't mind saying that the merge archives suck. this was posted 10 days ago and i had to rummage through six categories to find it.)

Andrew / June 25, 2009 1:56 PM

Yes, I know. It's on the to-do list.

Spook / June 25, 2009 3:37 PM

"The time has come that the Chicago Police be honored and recognized for their contributions to maintaining law and order - and for taking a stand against Anarchy"

Un F*cking believable!

The next gapers block question should be why is Chicago sooooo F*cked up!?!

Carrie / June 25, 2009 4:03 PM

I guess when agreeing with Devil's adv, I was more agreeing with right the judge can't make up injuries or make them worse than they were and yes, it was a missed opportunity by the judge.

Spook that's a total ahole thing for you to say, too. You should NEVER EVER wish a beating upon someone. Would you like to hear about the time I stopped a domestic fight on the street? I don't agree with anyone beating the crap out of someone, especially a cop beating someone 1/2 his size. I just thought that considering someone was calling themselves "devil's adv" that they weren't really that much of a devil. You have no idea what I saw growing up, so trust me the last thing I'm ok with is someone beating the shit out of someone else.

You are a complete creep, Spook. How dare you speak to me that way.

Spook / June 25, 2009 6:01 PM

Well lets agree that you think I'm a complete creep

But know this, I hate people like you.

NPR liberals who always find time to morally equivocate when it has to do with Some Body else, as opposed to having a No Tolerance Policy For Violence Against Women or the atmosphere that creates it, including people who have time to pointlessly play "devils advocate"

My God, a big drunk cop beat this women up, you FOOL. Imagine her terror as no one came to her aid.

But You think its o.k. to play around with this? by jotting down with abbreviations (cause you're soo cool!)
"devil's adv-- well said."

And now being called out, you think you can b.s. your way out of this by saying quote"
I just thought that considering someone was calling themselves "devil's adv" that they weren't really that much of a devil. WHAT?

Yes Carrie,
I stand by what I wrote and add that its people like you who create a space in which so much injustice is able to thrive.

PMan / June 25, 2009 10:27 PM

I'm not as shocked as everybody else. Your average street criminal is not sent to prison for his or her first, second, or usually third felony. Abbate loses his job, and is probably close to unemployable. It would cost the people of Illinois about $40,000 to put him away for a year, and I'm not sure much would come of it.

His lack of contrition and BS testimony would have caused me to send him to prison were I a judge. I'm not sure what other evidence in mitigation or aggravation was presented at sentencing, but this is not a tremendous deviation from what goes on in criminal law.

Carrie / June 25, 2009 10:28 PM

Spook, a "real" devil's adv in my mind would've said "it's fine what he did and his sentence was appropriate"- instead they simply pointed out a few things that the law couldn't do, which doesn't make it right, but the power to make things right doesn't always fall on one person. In case you didn't bother to read the rest of what I wrote, I will repeat-- I DO NOT (did that capture your attention??) agree with beating anyone.

And no, I'm not trying to BS my way out of it. I'm clarifying what I was agreeing with. You don't think the cop was right for beating her up, yet you wish the same, if not worse to me??? huh, interesting. Yet still, how dare you feel it's ok for someone to beat me up. I will now (hopefully) quit gapersblockfighting with you.

PS: might I mention that you're SOOOOO COOL for using "spook" as your name. you.are.the awesomest!!! holla!!

Dennis Fritz / July 24, 2009 6:55 PM

There is no way in hell a non-cop would have gotten off so lightly.

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