DA: Grand jury charges likely
BUFFALO, N.Y. -- The district attorney in Buffalo says he expects a grand jury to announce charges Wednesday against Chicago Blackhawks star Patrick Kane, who is accused of beating up a cab driver over a fare.
Kane and his cousin, James Kane, were arrested Aug. 9 after 62-year-old cabbie Jan Radecki told police they attacked him when he said he didn't have 20 cents change for the fare. The Kanes pleaded not guilty to robbery and misdemeanor counts of theft and criminal mischief.
Erie County District Attorney Frank Sedita III says he'll treat the Chicago forward like any other defendant.
Asked if a plea bargain is possible, Patrick Kane's lawyer, Paul Cambria, says there have been numerous discussions but no deal is in place.
"As is the practice in all criminal cases, the assigned prosecutor and defense counsel will discuss a possible resolution of the case short of trial," Sedita said in a statement.
A plea deal would be based on the victim's wishes, the severity of his injuries and other factors, Sedita said. But Kane's celebrity status "is not such a consideration," he said, adding, "Kane will not be prosecuted more leniently or more harshly because he is employed as a hockey player."
Tuesday, The Buffalo News reported two likely scenarios: the Kanes pleading guilty to lesser charges such as harassment or disorderly conduct; or an adjournment that could result in the charges being dropped. Neither scenario would likely involve jail time for either one of the cousins, the paper reported.
"I think everything is going to be wrapped up by the end of the week," a law enforcement source told the newspaper. "All parties are working in that direction."
The News also reported that Radecki wants a public apology.
Reached by ESPN.com's Pierre LeBrun, Pat Brisson, Kane's agent, said:
"Based on my conversations with Pat's attorney, Paul Cambria, as well as where the case currently stands, I am fully confident that Pat will be cleared once the legal process is complete."
During a news conference on Monday, at the start of the U.S. Olympic Hockey Orientation Camp in Woodridge, Ill., Kane apologized to the Blackhawks, fans, his family, Buffalo and Chicago.
"I sincerely apologize," Kane said Monday. "Now it's time for me to move forward."
The cab driver had bruises and broken glasses.
Information from ESPN.com's Pierre LeBrun and The Associated Press was used in this report.