Bar Patrons Refused Drinks Charged In $700,000 Trump Tower Flood

CHICAGO (CBS) — Chicago Trump Tower oozes ritz and glam, but it became a crime scene this week when two suspects allegedly caused an incredible amount of damage.

Police say after they were turned away from the swanky hotel bar they entered a stairwell and turned on a water valve.

CBS 2’s Dana Kozlov reports those two, 25-year-old men, are now in big trouble. Both are slapped with felony criminal damage to property charges after allegedly causing $700,000 worth of damage.

How did police find them? Security video and a credit card.

Prosecutors say it began as a drunken attempt by the two men to get another drink inside the Trump Tower’s bar Saturday. It ended with a call to 911 as hundreds of gallons flowed into the hotel.

Prosecutors say Carl Koenemann of Des Plaines and Benjamin Nitch of Barrington are to blame, turning on a water valve after a bartender refused to give the two intoxicated men another drink.

“Wow, that’s something. Well, immaturity I guess,” said Nancy Kolb.

Kolb parks in the hotel deck. She says it explains why the parking deck elevators are out of commission.

“Can’t use that parking garage those elevators over here so I have to walk over to the other side,” said Kolb.

Sources tell CBS 2 Koenemann and Nitch were arrested after security cameras caught them leaving the stairwell and police tracked them down by a credit card they’d used at the bar. After their arrest, prosecutors say the 25 year olds initially blamed each other, until Nitch ultimately admitted he did it.

In addition to those elevators, prosecutors say marble floors were damaged too. Bond for the two was set at $100,000 with electronic monitoring.
They are still in jail Tuesday night.

CBS 2 reached out to Trump Tower officials and Donald Trump’s assistant, but they did not yet have a comment.

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