Chai-Eun Hillman, a martial-arts teacher and bartender, was stabbed to death late last night outside Branded Saloon, a recently opened bar in Prospect Heights on the corner of Vanderbilt Avenue and Bergen Street, where he worked. The Post and the Daily News have slightly different accounts of what happened. According to the Post, Hillman was walking his dog when he ran into his killer, Daniel Pagan, who previously served nine years for manslaughter and was released in 2000. Hillman accidentally touched Pagan’s girlfriend when their dogs’ leashes got entangled, angering the ex-convict. The Daily News says Hillman was off-duty and ran outside the hipster country-western bar when he heard two dogs get into a fight outside. However the altercation started, Pagan pulled out a knife, stabbing Hillman twice in the chest. Daniel Hultquist, a waiter who was playing guitar inside at the time, had his throat slashed after he tried to intervene. Hultquist is currently in critical condition. With the restaurants Pequena, Beast, and the Vanderbilt all at the same crossroads, Branded Saloon is located at one of the most active intersections in that section of Prospect Heights.
Martial arts teacher stabbed by ex-con during dog walk [NYP]
Prospect Heights bartender stabbed to death at Branded Saloon [NYDN]