JOLIET – A lawyer was sentenced Thursday to a year’s probation for punching a stranger in a Braidwood bar two years ago.
Judge Edward Burmila also ordered Kenneth Grnacek not to use alcohol while on probation and perform 75 hours of community service to benefit a shelter for battered women.
Grnacek, 70, was found guilty of aggravated battery during a bench trial in April for giving Caryn Miller a bloody lip on Dec. 24, 2012, inside the Korner Keg, 285 E. Main St.
Grnacek was drinking in the bar and ordered a pizza from bartender Kiley Murphy, which he complained took too long to arrive.
Murphy and Grnacek exchanged profanity before she ordered him from the bar. Miller, a customer who sympathized with Murphy’s position, told Grnacek he should leave as she was walking by. He then turned and struck her in the mouth.
Grnacek faced a maximum sentence of five years in prison, but since he had no prior criminal record, it was expected he would receive the recommended sentence of probation. He declined comment on the sentence.
Grnacek, who is known around the Will County Courthouse as “The Hawk,” has practiced law for 40 years.
Grnacek’s conviction will be reported to the Attorney Registration and Disciplinary Commission. He could face professional sanctions from the ARDC, but will not be automatically censured or disbarred.