COOK COUNTY CRIMINAL COURT — Less than three weeks after being denied bail in the fatal stabbing of a Pilsen barista at a River West bar, the man charged with murder has been released from jail — despite an objection from prosecutors.
Thomas Tansey, charged with first-degree murder in the Feb. 21 slaying of Kenneth Paterimos at Richard’s Bar, was granted a $250,000 bond by Judge John F. Lyke Jr on Monday.
Lyke Jr. ordered Tansey wear an ankle monitor and “comply with special conditions of his bail,” according to the Tribune.
Tansey posted the needed 10 percent — $25,000 — and was released Tuesday night with the electronic monitoring device, a Cook County County Sheriff’s Department spokesperson said.
“Over our objection and request that the defendant remain held in custody without bond, today the court set bail at $250,000,” Cook County State’s Attorney’s Office spokeswoman Tandra Simonton said.
Tansey’s attorney, Sam Amirante, has not responded to requests for comment.
Earlier this month, prosecutors said a bar fight spilled outside Richard’s at 491 N. Milwaukee Ave., resulting in a confused series of events and the eventual death of Paterimos, who died from a slashed artery after being stabbed eight times.
Prosecutors said Tansey was “severely intoxicated” at the bar when he and Paterimos got into a fight, fell to the floor and had to be separated. Witnesses were unclear on who started the fight, prosecutors said.
Following the stabbing, Paterimos’ brother, Santiago “Julian” Bueno, stopped Tansey and disarmed him until police arrived. Officers found a blood-covered knife where witnesses said Tansey had left it, prosecutors said.
Paterimos was taken to Stroger Hospital and pronounced dead. He was stabbed in the back of his head, his right ear, the middle of his back, his right clavicle and his right arm — which severed an artery and turned out to be the fatal wound.
A friend of Paterimos who had come outside with him was also stabbed. He has no memory of what happened outside the bar, prosecutors said.
During a March 5 hearing, Judge Charles Beach ordered Tansey held without bail. While Tansey claimed self-defense, Beach said the wounds did not suggest mutual combat.
Amirante previously told reporters his client acted in self defense.
Tansey is scheduled back in court on April 2.
When Paterimos’ younger brother Anthony Paterimos learned Monday that Tansey may be released from jail, he said he felt angry.
“I’m pissed off that he has the chance to get out,” he said. “He shouldn’t be out. Even if it’s in his own home, he shouldn’t be free.”
Lauren Young, a West Town neighbor and a member of the 12th District Court Advocates program, said she was upset by what transpired.
“It’s definitely upsetting because I believe that the story hasn’t changed since it was told originally in bond court,” she said. “With the story staying the same, the outcome of the bail should stay the same. … The bond being reduced to a monetary amount is concerning for neighbors, especially considering his criminal history.”
The Court Advocacy program is a way for neighbors to represent the interests of the community during judicial proceedings.
Because officials are limiting who can enter the courts through mid-April due to coronavirus, neighbors will likely not be allowed to attend the April 2 hearing, Young said.
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