Sex assault trial begins Wednesday against former Pittsburgh restaurateur
Testimony is scheduled to begin Wednesday in the trial against a Pittsburgh restaurateur accused of breaking in to a woman’s South Side Slopes home and sexually assaulting her in her bed.
Adnan Pehlivan, who owned Regent Square’s now-shuttered Istanbul Sofra restaurant, is accused of following the woman home from a South Side bar May 15, breaking into her home and sexually assaulting her.
Pehlivan, 47, faces a slew of charges, including sexual assault, burglary and stalking. Jury selection began Monday and wrapped up on Tuesday.
The woman testified at a preliminary hearing last year that Pehlivan sat next to her and some friends at a South Side bar the night of the alleged assault.
She said during that hearing that man – who she did not know and who was later identified as Pehlivan – placed shots of liquor in front of them. She and her friends thanked him and then continued their own conversation. She alleged that he continued to buy them drinks until they left with a polite “thank you.”
After she returned to her Josephine Street home, the woman testified, she later woke to find the man she recognized from the bar performing oral sex on her. Prosecutors allege the two struggled, and Pehlivan fled, though not before the woman ripped a piece of his shirt.
At the preliminary hearing, Pehlivan’s attorney worked to build doubt based on the woman’s drinking throughout the night.
Pehlivan has remained in the Allegheny County jail since May 24. After he requested a bond modification in order to travel abroad, Judge Jeffrey Manning instead revoked bond.
At that hearing, prosecutors introduced surveillance footage from East Carson Street the night of the alleged attack that they say shows Pehlivan systematically stalking the victim and her friends as they left the bar.
Megan Guza is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Megan at 412-380-8519, [email protected] or via Twitter .