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Report: Court Papers Say Daley’s Nephew Felt Guilty About Punching Man

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David Koschman

David Koschman, 21, died in May 2004, 11 days after he was punched and hit his head on a curb during a confrontation on Rush Street. According to the Chicago Sun-Times, news reports indicate Richard J. Vanecko, a nephew of Mayor Richard M. Daley, threw the punch. (Photo Credit: CBS)

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CHICAGO (CBS) — New court papers suggest Chicago Police may have left out key information in a report about an incident involving a nephew of former Mayor Richard M. Daley in which another man died after being punched.

As WBBM Newsradio’s Bernie Tafoya reports, the Chicago Sun-Times says court papers say detective told friends of the victim, David Koschman, that Daley’s nephew, Robert J. Vanecko, was in another room at the police station and was crying his eyes out over Koschman being so severely injured by just one punch.

LISTEN: WBBM Newsradio’s Bernie Tafoya reports

Early on the morning of April 25, 2004, Vanecko and Koschman reportedly had a confrontation outside a bar in the Rush and Division Street nightclub district. The quarrel allegedly prompted Vanecko to punch Koschman.

Koschman had hit his head on the ground, and he died 12 days later.

The case was reopened and closed by Chicago Police last year, without criminal charges. Police said they determined Vanecko acted in self-defense.

Detectives reportedly determined Koschman was the aggressor, based on witness accounts.

But those witnesses later said they never told police Koschman was the aggressor.

Alvarez’s office also declined to press charges, saying there was not enough evidence to sustain criminal charges against Vanecko. But last year, Alvarez did ask Illinois State Police to examine the Chicago Police investigation.

Koschman’s family’s petition for a special prosecutor noted irregularities in the investigation, including false official reports and a case file that went missing, and says the investigation might have been influenced by Vanecko’s relationship to Mayor Daley. The petition said the irregularities require an independent investigation.

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