Man accused in beating of rock bassist found not guilty

Abusive BehaviorJustice SystemCrime, Law and JusticeHealthSmashing Pumpkins (music group)

A man accused of beating the bassist for a Chicago rock band when the musician tried to stop the man from attacking his wife was found not guilty today, prosecutors said.

Justin Pivec, 35, was found not guilty in a bench trial that ended midday today before Cook County Criminal Court Judge Vincent Gaughan, said Tandra Simonton, a spokeswoman for the Cook County state’s attorney’s office.

Pivec was charged with attempted murder in the 2010 attack on Matthew Leone, 35, bassist for the rock band Madina Lake.

Prosecutors had said Pivec was choking his wife while he pinned her against a fence early on June 29, 2010, in the 1300 block of West Ohio Street.

A domestic battery case against Pivec in the attack against his wife is still pending, with a hearing set in Branch 60 of Cook County Domestic Violence Court on July 27, according to court records.

Pivec's wife, who was on the ground, bloodied, yelled to Leone, who was leaving his brother’s nearby condo, to call police, Leone and police said after the incident.

Leone tried to intervene, was punched in the face by Pivec and fell to the ground, where Pivec kicked Leone in the head and face approximately 10 times, prosecutors had alleged.

Leone sustained massive head injuries, including subdural and epidural hematomas, temporal bone fractures and nasal fractures, prosecutors said at the time.

He was hospitalized for days before police were able to talk to him about the attack and had to have a third of his skull removed to relieve pressure on his brain.

The Smashing Pumpkins held a fundraiser for Leone last July.

chicagobreaking@tribune.com
Twitter: @ChicagoBreaking

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