HOT SPOT: Former Boystown Bar Owner Pleads Guilty To Arson

Frank Elliott, the former Boystown bar owner who was accused of having another gay bar he owned in Oak Park set afire as part of an insurance scheme in 2012, has reached a plea deal.

Elliott pleaded guilty to one count of arson and one count of insurance fraud.

In exchange for his plea, Elliott received 2 years probation, a fine of $1,179, and was ordered to pay restitution of $107,000.

At the time of the fire, Elliott publicly stated that he believed the fire to be a hate crime.

Elliott occasionally employed convicted Uptown arsonist Daniel Grunauer at his now-shuttered Boystown club, Bonsai Bar & Lounge, as well as at the Velvet Rope in Oak Park.

As CWB reported exclusively last year, Grunauer just happened to be named as a co-starring attraction in the next-to-last Tweet sent by Velvet Rope before it was set on fire.

Grunauer was sentenced to a 3-year prison term in January after pleading guilty to arson and burglary in connection with two Uptown incidents. He was never charged in the Oak Park matter.

Image: An photo of Frank Elliott outside of his Velvet Rope bar shortly after it burned in 2012.

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About CWBChicago 4275 Articles
CWBChicago was created in 2013 by five residents of Wrigleyville and Boystown who had grown disheartened with inaccurate information that was being provided at local Community Policing (CAPS) meetings. Our coverage area has expanded since then to cover Lincoln Park, River North, The Loop, Uptown, and other North Side Areas. But our mission remains unchanged: To provide original public safety reporting with better context and greater detail than mainstream media outlets. Our editorial email address is