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Killer Of Brudder's Bouncer Had Just Been Escorted Out, Prosecutors Say

By  Kelly Bauer Patty Wetli and Erica Demarest | April 15, 2016 10:16am | Updated on April 18, 2016 8:28am

IRVING PARK  — The construction worker accused of killing a bouncer at an Irving Park bar had just been kicked out of the bar with his girlfriend because of her behavior, prosecutors said in court Friday.

Instead of leaving Brudder's bar peacefully, Felix Valentin went to his girlfriend's SUV, pulled out a gun and fired fours shot toward the bar, authorities said. One of the bullets went through a bar window and hit Angel Ortiz in his head, killing him.

Valentin, 28, of the 2200 block of North Avers Avenue, is charged with first-degree murder. He was ordered held without bail by Judge Donald Panarese Jr. on Friday afternoon.

"He's a danger to the community," Panarese said.

During the bond hearing, Cook County Assistant State's Attorney Brian Whang said Valentin had been drinking with his girlfriend and her sister in Brudder's for one to two hours on April 2.

His girlfriend was told to leave because of her behavior, and all three in the group were escorted out, Whang said. That's when Valentin retaliated, blasting a shot through the Brudder's window and killing Ortiz, 51, Whang said.

Before going to the bar, Valentin — the father of kids ages 7, 9 and 10 — had been drinking at a friend's house, according to prosecutors. He returned to the house after the shooting and confessed to friends what he did, Whang said.

"We want to thank police for their speedy work in arresting the person they believe is responsible for this murder," Owen Brugh, chief of staff for Ald. John Arena (45th), said in response to the charges. "We also want to thank the community for how engaged they are on this issue."

Ortiz, a father and grandfather, had struggled after being laid off from his job several years ago, family said earlier this week. Things had just begun to fall back into place when he was killed.

“He was really excited,” said Joe Sanchez, Ortiz's son. “It was finally like going back to similar work that he had before, getting back into the swing of things.”

Angel Ortiz was a father of two and a grandfather of four. He was always optimistic and focused on his family, relatives said. [Facebook/Angel Ortiz]

Anibal Ortiz, Angel's brother and a Brudder's employee, said Wednesday that the shooting stemmed from an incident outside the bar, and his brother was not the intended target.

“When I needed something from him, he was always there,” Anibal Ortiz said. “I miss him. I miss him so much.”

Brudder's closed after the shooting, but it plans to reopen next week with more restrictions, including an earlier closing time.

"Moving forward, our goal is to make sure nothing like this happens again around Brudder's. ... This is certainly not the only incident there that is troubling," said Brugh.

At a recent CAPS meeting, neighbors said Brudder's, which bills itself as a sports bar, turns into a "free-for-all zoo" on weekends.

Patrons routinely leave the bar after closing, head to a nearby 7-Eleven to buy more alcohol, and continue drinking in the neighborhood, leading to fights, public urination and vomiting "all night long," residents said.

The fatal shooting was the "culmination" of a pattern of violence at the bar that neighbors said left them frightened of stray bullets.

Over the last two years, data showed 44 calls to 911 related to the bar, including seven that involved guns.

Community members said that while they appreciated the priority police gave to the case, they remained apprehensive about ongoing violence associated with Brudder's.

"It is heartbreaking that it took a homicide to shine a spotlight on the nefarious activities which have been going on for many years," one longtime resident said.

"We will continue to work with police, the community, Ald. [Ariel] Reboyras and various city departments toward the goal of making sure Brudder's operates as a responsible member of the community," Brugh said.


• Slain Brudder’s Bouncer Was On Way To Better Life After Losing Job, Home

• Brudder's To Reopen With Restrictions: Earlier Close, ID Scan, No DJs

• Brudder's Put On Notice: 'Clean Up Act' Or City Will Shut Bar Down

• Deadly Brudder's Shooting Came After 40+ 911 Calls About Troubled Bar

• Brudder's Closed Until Further Notice, $2.5K Reward Offered In Shooting

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