Man arrested after taking a swing at Chicago alderman at River North bar

Boss Bar at 420 North Clark. | Google

CHICAGO — A Chicago alderman was battered at a River North bar on Saturday evening, according to an internal CPD document acquired by CWBChicago. But the alderman, Brendan Reilly (42nd), says the guy swung at him and missed.

“A city alderman was struck in the face and refused medical attention on the scene,” the preliminary notification to CPD’s Crime Prevention and Information Center said. “It is not believed the alderman was targeted due to the alderman’s position with the city.”

A Chicago police spokesperson said Ulises Ortiz, 33, “battered a male victim, 51, and was taken into custody by responding officers.” The spokesperson did not identify the victim as an alderman.

“A totally wasted guy took a swipe at me (and many others) and missed,” Reilly said. “He battered an employee. I’m all good.”

Coincidentally, Reilly, 51, was battered by a man outside Boss Bar in February 2021. He did not immediately file a police report, but Mayor Lori Lightfoot “instructed police to investigate” after the press picked up the story, Block Club Chicago reported.

“These guys came out of the middle of the street, out of Hubbard Street and were yelling unintelligibly,” Reilly said at the time, according to the Block Club report. “I had no idea what they were trying to say, I was trying to hear what they were saying. I said ‘What are you saying’ and kind of walked away because it looked like they were getting aggressive.”

Police later determined that only one person was involved in the 2021 attack, a CPD spokesperson said at the time.

Antonio Palazzi, 35, turned himself in to police more than a month later to face a misdemeanor battery charge. He pleaded guilty in December 2021 and received a sentence of six months of court supervision, according to court records.

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About Tim Hecke 252 Articles
Tim Hecke is CWBChicago's managing partner. He started his career at KMOX, the legendary news radio station in St. Louis. From there, he moved on to work at stations in Minneapolis, Chicago, and New York City. Tim went on to build syndicated radio news and content services that served every one of America's 100 largest radio markets. He became CWBChicago's managing partner in 2019. His email address is