Sex assault trial opens for former restaurant owner

Published 02-27-2019

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PITTSBURGH (AP) - Trial has begun for a former Pittsburgh restaurant owner charged with breaking into a woman's home and sexually assaulting her.

Allegheny County prosecutors allege that 47-year-old Adnan Pehlivan stalked the woman and her friends from a bar to their home, then broke in and sexually assaulted her.

Assistant District Attorney Ed Scheid described Pehlivan - owner of now-closed Istanbul Sofra - as "restaurateur by day ... sexual predator by night." He said surveillance footage shows the defendant systematically stalking the women as they walked to their car.

Defense attorney Lee Rothman characterized the May events Wednesday as a "hook up" gone wrong. He indicated he plans to argue that the woman knew Pehlivan was following them and maintains that there's no evidence that he gained entry to the house "surreptitiously."

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