Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Sharp Eyed Bar Employees Help Nab Man Doctoring Date's Drink

This story made me laugh and it made me cry. Laugh because a rape was prevented. Cry because who knows whether this man succeeded with other women.

As yuppies moved into what became million-dollar Victorians in the 1990s, it became Noe's Arc, and now it's Noe's Bar. Not a place for trouble. Not the kind of place where what looked like an attempted date rape would occur. Or where a guy on a first date, like Joseph Szlamnik, at the time a 43- year-old senior management assistant for the San Francisco Unified School District, would commit a crime. Szlamnik was sentenced last week to a year in jail by Superior Court Judge Anne Bouliane on narcotic charges related to the incident. [...]

On the night in question, [Karri] Cormican, 23, quickly approached the bartender, Hannah Bridgeman-Oxley, 27, and told her what she had seen. The two women hatched a plan. Cormican returned to the table and told Szlamnik and his date, whom the court identified only as Tatiana K., then 34, that the woman's beer had come from a fermented keg and that they were going to replace it. Cormican brought her a Stella Artois.

Cormican carried the adulterated Hefeweizen to Bridgeman-Oxley and out of sight into a back room. They held it up to the light and saw, unmistakably, a white powder. At a preliminary hearing last summer, Nikolas Lemos, chief forensic toxicologist at the San Francisco medical examiner's office, identified the powder as zalepron, a prescription sleeping drug sold as Sonata.

While one of the women warned the intended target as she stepped outside to smoke a cigarette, the other woman saw the man spike the replacement drink.

On the sidewalk, Tatiana was sobbing. Bridgeman-Oxley stalked back into the bar with Tatiana following, swiped the foaming glass off the table and looked the stunned Szlamnik in the eye when he began to protest that she had served him a second bad beer.

He said to Tatiana, "Let's go."

"You're date's over, mister," the bartender told him. "She's staying with us."
To these 2 women, I give a great big cyber cheer. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you.

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posted by Marcella Chester @ 6:47 PM   0 comments links to this post


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