UPDATE: Former City Attorney's House 'Completely Destroyed' Inside, Police Say

David Baitman, who was accused of sexually attacking a woman in 2011, was found dead inside his Oak Forest home Tuesday night.

Update 11:35 a.m.

Officers found David Baitman unresponsive in the home’s attic at around 10:30 p.m. Tuesday, according to police.

The inside of the single-story house was “completely destroyed,” according to an report. A rope noose was tied to a rafter in the attic where Baitman was found and several alcoholic beverages were on a nearby ledge.

Baitman, who was awaiting trial on accusations he sexually assaulted a woman in his home, was pronounced dead at the scene by an Ingalls Hospital doctor police had called.

Baitman’s daughter, Tiffany Zaba, had requested a well-being check and called Cook County probation officers to the home, according to the report. Baitman was on electronic home monitoring awaiting the trial and was tracked to the house.

Zaba reportedly told probation officers her father had “not been acting like himself lately” and that she was worried about him.

Probation officers who first arrived obtained a key to the house from Zaba and, after entering the house, could smell a strong odor of natural gas, the report states. Oak Forest firefighters were called shortly after and turned off the gas line.

Oak Forest police found the inside of the house completely destroyed, according to the report. The stove was on and the front glass window was broken out. All the faucets were opened, which flooded much of the house.

A Cook County medical examiner was called to take the body.

Original story

Police have confirmed that a body found inside a Landings Lane home late Tuesday night is that of former city attorney David Baitman.

Baitman, 60, was accused of inside his home in September 2011.

The cause of death appears to be suicide, police said. Oak Forest police were investigating a body found at 14868 Landings Lane late Tuesday but had not released details until this morning.

Last month, Baitman's defense attorney had changed his plea to not guilty by reason of insanity.

Check back with Patch as the story develops.

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lvent August 06, 2012 at 02:03 AM
Zelda.....there were some who believed they were protecting the victim. I believe the truth should NEVER be covered up when someone has been harmed. The outcome of this proves that covering things up really protects no one accept but the offender.
Dee Runaas August 09, 2012 at 07:22 PM
In the end, the "offender" wasn't protected either so you who throw the first stones can all sleep better tonight!
lvent August 09, 2012 at 07:30 PM
Who is throwing stones at who....? The offender wasn't protected from himself therefore, NO ONE was protected. That's why honesty is the best policy. The truth should have been told in the first place. Covering up the truth protects NO ONE.
lvent August 09, 2012 at 07:31 PM
Sorry Dee...your statement makes no sense.
defender October 31, 2012 at 04:26 AM
I am so saddened by Dave Baitman's death. If you did not know him, you cannot know how out of character this was. When I started practicing as a young attorney 20 yrs ago, Dave was an inspiration to me. Not only that, but a person who was capable of real empathy toward clients. My condolences to all of those -- family, friends & colleagues -- who knew the Dave I knew. I am not excusing his actions; I am saying these were the actions of a human being suffering from debilitating mental illness. Rest in peace.


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