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Crocodile Owner's Battery Case Continued, Tavern Posts 'Closed' Sign

By Alisa Hauser | February 17, 2017 3:06pm | Updated on February 20, 2017 9:46am
Radoslaw "Radek" Hawryszczuk, 41, owner of Crocodile, has a court date on Wednesday from two battery charges placed agianst him during a Jan. 15, 2017 altercation in his bar.
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Chicago Police Dept. (Mugshot)

WICKER PARK — The case against the owner of The Crocodile bar, who has been charged with grabbing a bartender and kicking a security guard, was continued this week to mid-March, records show.

Radoslaw "Radek" Hawryszczuk, 41, owner of the bar known as Crocodile at 1540 N. Milwaukee Ave, was scheduled to appear in court Wednesday for simple battery charges stemming from an altercation that allegedly occurred in his bar around 2:10 a.m. on Jan. 15.

In that incident, a 26-year-old woman, who worked as a bartender, said Hawryszczuk grabbed her left arm and a 44-year-old man, employed as a security guard, said he was kicked by Hawryszczuk, according to a police report.

Hawryszczuk did not appear in court on Wednesday and a warrant was issued by for his arrest, said Tandra Simonton, a Cook County state's attorney spokeswoman. But before court ended for the day, a lawyer representing Hawryszczuk appeared before the judge and was granted a continuance until Thursday, Simonton said.

On Thursday afternoon, Simonton said the case was continued to 1 p.m. on March 16 at Cook County Court-Branch 23, 5555 W. Grand Ave.

Since Wednesday, a handwritten sign has been tacked to the window of the bar, announcing "Sorry We Are Closed."

Hawryszczuk did not respond to requests for comment.

It was unclear if the closure is permanent or temporary.


The bartender, who declined to be identified, said that she went to court on Wednesday with the security guard who was allegedly kicked by Hawryszczuk.

"There was six of us there [in court]. Me and five ex-Crocodile employees showed up," the bartender said.

The bartender, who worked for Hawryszczuk for two years before resigning on Jan. 15, said Hawryszczuk was angry over a credit card machine on the night he grabbed her.

Earlier this week, members of influential Wicker Park neighborhood group questioned how a tavern license was recently awarded to The Crocodile given past incidents of trouble there, including a stabbing, a beating and other late-night fights.

Ald. Joe Moreno (1st) said he aims to work "with the Chicago Department of Business Affairs and other City departments to ensure that Crocodile, like all other businesses in the 1st Ward, complies with all applicable City rules and regulations, including those pertaining to its liquor license."

"If the business fails to abide by its legal requirements, I and the City will use all means available to ensure full compliance or, alternately, seek full enforcement actions against Crocodile, including punitive measures," Moreno said.