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Abbate Attorney: It Was Self-Defense (UPDATED)

By Marcus Gilmer in News on Jun 2, 2009 7:15PM

Before we continue with the post, we invite you to first re-watch the surveillance tape video that's been repeatedly shown across the country over the last 2+ years.

Now, with that in mind, consider that Abbate's attorney told the judge yesterday, “We expect to show Karolina went after our client. He didn’t go after Karolina, she grabbed him and tossed him around like a rag doll.” Karolina Obrycka, the bartender who was attacked, testified yesterday and admitted to trying to push Abbate out from behind the bar. Still, watching the video, it's hard to swallow the "tossed him around like a rag doll" claim.

Abbate chose to go with a bench trial instead of a jury trial, most likely because of the wide play the taped beating got on television. The trial could wrap up as early as today. As we mentioned yesterday, Abbate has since been stripped of his badge and the Chicago Police Board awaits the trial verdict before moving forward with any other disciplinary measures, including termination. [NBC 5]

UPDATE: Chicago Breaking News is reporting: "Judge John Fleming acquitted Anthony Abbate of two counts of official misconduct, saying that bartender Karolina Obrycka testified Abbate never announced that he was a police officer."

UPDATE II: Matthew Walberg has updated the CBN story with snips from Abbate's testimony.

In a second round of questioning, Hickey tried to rehabilitate his client's testimony.

"Did you feel in danger when she grabbed you from behind, body slammed you up against the wall and nearly took you to the floor?" Hickey asked.

"Yes," Abbate said.

"Were you going to stand there and let her hurt you some more?"

No," Abbate replied.

Closing arguments are expected this afternoon.