Chicago area eye doctor is charged with murder after stabbing his nurse girlfriend to death last month
Anthony Prate, 55, an optometrist from Schaumburg, Illinois reportedly stabbed Margaret Daniel 20 to 30 times inside her apt on Nov 23
The knife attack proved fatal for the 48-year-old mother-of-two
McHenry County investigators now, are re-examining the death of his wife Bridget Prate, 45, who died in a car crash in 2011
Bridget died, days after Anthony called police to report that she was plotting with a lover on a phone call, to kill him
Anthony was behind the wheel in the crash and an autopsy was inconclusive, and the crash theories inconsistent
For months investigators tried to determine if the crash was intentional
That crash came days after he called the police on her claiming she was having an affair and plotting to kill him
Murder or self-defense? Anthony Prate, [photo], of Schaumburg, Illinois was arrested and charged with first degree murder for allegedly stabbing his girlfriend 48-year-old Margaret Daniel to death in her apt on Nov. 23
Anthony Prate, an optometrist from the Chicago area has been charged with murder for stabbing his girlfriend to death, leading investigations to re-examine the mysterious car crash death of his wife back in 2011.
Prate, a 55-year-old eye doctor from Schaumburg, a suburb outside Chicago, was arrested last month and charged with first-degree murder after killing his girlfriend 48-year-old nurse, Margaret Daniel in her apartment on November 23.
Authorities said Prate stabbed Daniel between 20 to 30 times.
Prate and Daniel reportedly, got into an argument after a dinner party with her neighbors.
He reportedly told dispatchers his victim stabbed him first and was heard in the dispatch call saying, ‘My girlfriend and I had a fight. She stabbed me with a knife, and I stabbed her back and I think she’s gravely wounded.’
‘She doesn’t look good. She doesn’t look good. I don’t know what I should do for her,’ he was heard saying in the call.
His arrest caught the attention of McHenry County investigators, who investigated the death of his late wife, 45-year-old Bridget Prate, nine years ago.
Victim: Police said Margaret Daniel, 48, a nurse and mother of two adult daughters, was fatally stabbed, an estimated 20 to 30 times by her boyfriend, 55-year-old optometrist Anthony Prate, in her Schaumburg home on Nov. 23
At the time prosecutors and police never charged Prate with a crime, but in a new joint statement revealed they’ll be re-investigating Bridget’s case.
‘We are closely monitoring the ongoing investigation related to Mr. Prate in Cook County and will continue to evaluate incoming information for any bearing it may have on the tragic death of Bridget Prate in 2011,’ the statement said.
Investigators have re-opened investigation in the 2011 death of Prate’s late wife Bridget Prate, [photo], who died in a car crash while Anthony was behind the wheel. Coroner the cause of death as undetermined. The autopsy report believed she ‘was dead prior to the time of the accident’, that her injuries were inconsistent with a major collision.
Bridget Prate told responding officers it was a misunderstanding and they left the home, according to police records. Th male at the other end of the line happened to be a friend who Bridget was helping study for a real estate exam and they were discussing procedures for when a homeowner dies.
Then days later came the harrowing crash where her body was found crumpled under the dashboard.
Anthony Prate told investigators that his wife unbuckled her seat belt to look for her purse and water bottle just before he lost control of the vehicle, crossed the line of traffic and hit an oncoming car then smashed into a tree.
But a pathologist who performed the autopsy on Bridget Prate said her injuries were inconsistent with a major collision and told police he believed she ‘was dead prior to the time of the accident’. He ruled the cause of death as undetermined.
The autopsy found a fractured vertebra in Prate’s neck, which shouldn’t have killed her. Additionally, she only suffered minor wounds on her body such as scratches and bruises.
‘There was no evidence of significant injuries or natural disease which caused or contributed to the death,’ Dr. Mark Witeck wrote in his autopsy report.
The police report for the crash noted that no airbag deployed on Bridget Prate’s side of the car in the crash. There was also ‘no damage to the car that would seem to be consistent with a fatal accident.’
Police investigated that case for at least 10 long months into how she died and whether the crash was intentional. An autopsy for Bridget’s body was inconclusive.
Private investigator Bruce Johnson was hired by Bridget’s family to investigate the case in 2014, and the retired Illinois State Police master sergeant found the case perplexing.
‘The lack of cause of death in a case like this is pretty rare,’ he said adding inmost fatal car crashes, ‘pathology and autopsy results usually determine cause of death fairly quickly,’ he said.
Police had been investigating her death as recently as 2016 but it’s not clear if there will be any new developments with that case after the murder charges were filed in Schaumburg.
‘I’m shocked. I would never have thought this. I’m praying for the kids,’ neighbor Connie Tondo, who has known Prate for years, said to ABC7.
‘My have been over there and their kids have been over here. I never imagined anything like this,’ she added.
Daniel was fatally stabbed after she and Prate got into an argument following a dinner part with her neighbors, cops say.
Prosecutors said Prate called three family members before finally calling 911 to report the stabbing.
He was treated for cuts to his hands and arms.
Prate was charged with murder and is being held in Cook County Jail without bond.