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Brawl at Piece Sparks Manhunt After Waiter, Detective Punched

By Alisa Hauser | April 14, 2015 10:02am | Updated on April 14, 2015 5:05pm
 Alleged offender courtesy of Piece.
Alleged offender courtesy of Piece.
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Courtesy of Piece

WICKER PARK — A group of men attacked a doorman and a waiter at Wicker Park's Piece restaurant Monday night before punching a Chicago Police detective and fleeing, sparking a manhunt, police said.

The detective was injured and taken to an area hospital.

According to Eric Frietzsche, Piece's manager, four men who came into the restaurant at 1927 W. North Ave. were acting "a little weird" after a server took their order.

"A little bit of testosterone, a little weird. It looked like they had come from a Cubs game, and one of them was wearing a Cubs shirt," Frietzsche said.

Alisa Hauser was nearby when the commotion broke out:

After the doorman went to check on the men because of their behavior, one of the men punched the doorman and sucker-punched their server, prompting Frietzsche to call police, he said.

 Piece at 1927 W. North Ave.
Piece at 1927 W. North Ave.
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Eric Fritzsche/Piece

Three of the men at the table were involved in the attack, Frietzsche said.

Around that time, about 10:25 p.m., an on-duty detective who happened to be near Piece walked over to intervene, and he, too, was punched. The detective was treated at an area hospital, where his condition stabilized, said Officer Hector Alfaro, a Police Department spokesman.

Freitzsche said that the last fight at Piece he can recall was seven or eight years ago.

Early Monday, Piece's owner Bill Jacobs, who was not on site at the time of the fight, said, "Of course I'm disappointed. Who wants that in their establishment?"

Jacobs added: "Piece is not exactly known as a place for fights or altercations."

Alfaro said Tuesday that no one is in custody, though police have footage of the alleged suspects. The search included using a helicopter, according to witnesses.

When asked about the big police response to the incident, Alfaro said, "Any time one of our officers is injured, when it's one of your own, they were looking. Unfortunately, they did not catch them."

The attackers are described as four Hispanic or white males. The investigation is ongoing.

One of the men was wearing a puffy vest with a camouflage T-shirt underneath it, and has rather thick eyebrows.

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