New details are emerging about the time that Patrick Kane spent in a downtown Buffalo nightclub last weekend and the allegations made by a woman who claims that Kane raped her after meeting her in the club and taking her to his Town of Hamburg waterfront home.
Sources with knowledge of the investigation said that the young woman who has accused the hockey superstar of rape had bite marks on her shoulders and a scratch on her leg after the alleged attack.
The woman alleges that Kane invited her and a female friend to his home for a private party after they met him last Saturday night at SkyBar, a popular nightclub on Franklin Street, the sources said.
Shortly after she and her friend arrived at Kane’s home on Old Lakeshore Road, the accuser alleges that she went by herself into another room, where Kane followed her, overpowered her and raped her, the sources said.
The woman left Kane’s home with her friend and used a cellphone to call a relative immediately after the alleged attack. She then went to a local hospital for examination, and police were called afterward, the sources said.
The alleged attack occurred about 4 a.m. last Sunday, about an hour after Kane was seen leaving SkyBar.
A person who knows the woman described her as frantic and traumatized when she called her relative to report what happened.
SkyBar’s owner, Mark Croce, told The Buffalo News on Saturday night that he has no way of knowing what happened between the woman and Kane at Kane’s home. He said he only knows Kane casually and has never been to his home.
But Croce told The News that he and several of his employees noticed a young woman “hanging all over” Kane at SkyBar for at least two hours that night, putting her hands on his arms and “being very forward, very flirtatious with him.” He said he does not know the woman and does not know her name.
“It was almost like she stationed herself near him and was keeping other women away from him,” Croce said. “I noticed it and kind of laughed about it.”
A bar manager that night also noticed the woman’s behavior with Kane, Croce said.
Croce said the woman and a female friend “followed” Kane as he left the nightclub with a couple of male friends around 3 a.m. last Sunday.
“I don’t know if this is the same woman who made the rape allegation against him,” Croce said. “I only know what I saw that night on my own premises. If you’re going to ask what happened between them after they left that night, how would I know?”
The News could not independently verify whether the woman Croce described is the same woman who made the rape complaint to Hamburg Police.
Croce said he has been asked by the Erie County District Attorney’s Office to make a statement, and he said he and bar employees will cooperate in the investigation.
“The DA’s investigator asked me for a list of all the people we had working that night, and their contact information, and I gave it to him,” Croce said.
For the past week, Kane, 26, has been the subject of an investigation conducted by Town of Hamburg Police and the DA’s office. Police searched Kane’s home last week, and the woman was examined in a hospital for signs of rape, but no charges have been filed.
Croce said he has been inundated with media requests for interviews. He said he decided to speak to The News on Saturday night because he is upset with media reports that “insinuate” that Kane was out of control during his time at SkyBar.
“I’ve got no skin in this game. I am only telling you what I observed,” Croce said. “(Kane) was acting like a typical young guy his age, out having fun with some of his buddies. A lot of people were coming up to him, asking to have pictures taken with him. He was a gentleman. Pat had a couple of drinks and maybe a couple of shots. He was having a good time, but he wasn’t stumbling or doing anything obnoxious.”
Croce said that, in his opinion, some news media reports make it appear as though Kane is guilty of rape.
“This is America, the place where you are still innocent until proven guilty,” Croce said.
He said that, to his knowledge, Kane has visited SkyBar “two or three times” in the past several years and never caused problems there.
Hamburg Police and District Attorney Frank A. Sedita III have said very little about the investigation. Hamburg Police said they are continuing their investigation and are awaiting the results of forensic tests.
Two of the region’s most prominent defense attorneys – Paul J. Cambria and Thomas J. Eoannou – are now involved in the case.
Cambria confirmed Saturday for the first time that he represents Kane in connection with the investigation.
“I do represent him, but I have nothing to say about it. No comments,” Cambria told The News. Asked if Kane denies the woman’s allegations against him, Cambria said he could not comment.
When asked about Croce’s comments, Cambria said, “Obviously, Mr. Croce is a person that investigators on both sides would be interested in talking to.”
Other knowledgeable sources confirmed for The News that Eoannou has been hired by the alleged rape victim’s family. Eoannou told The News in a brief phone conversation that he cannot confirm or deny that he represents the family. “I have no comment at all on this matter,” Eoannou said.
Croce said that plans had been made for Kane to visit SkyBar on Saturday night with the Stanley Cup, the coveted National Hockey League trophy that Kane and his Chicago Blackhawks teammates won June 15.
But, apparently because of the controversy over the rape allegations, that visit was canceled, Croce said at about 8 p.m. Saturday.
The Blackhawks said Saturday that Kane had the Cup but spent the day privately with his family. The team also said Kane having the Cup on Saturday was coincidental, rather than having some significance tied to his jersey number.