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‘Bachelor’ news: Casey’s old (and current?) flame is Chicago trader

Ben Flajnik Casey Shteamer share moment Monday's episode 'The Bachelor.'

Ben Flajnik and Casey Shteamer share a moment on Monday's episode of "The Bachelor."

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Updated: March 9, 2012 8:14AM

Former Chicago resident Casey Shteamer, 26, got the boot on Monday’s “Bachelor” after she was busted for carrying a torch for an old — or perhaps not so old — flame.

That “ex” has been identified on various “Bachelor” blogs — and confirmed by Casey’s former Chicago employer — as Michael Patak, a floor trader at the Chicago Board of Trade. Patak also is CEO of Chicago-based Topstep Trader, a scouting agency that recruits and develops futures trading talent.

A phone message left at Patak’s office was not immediately returned Tuesday.

On Monday’s episode, host Chris Harrison pulled Casey aside and confronted her with the news that three people — including Michael himself — had contacted the show to say that Casey was still in love with Michael. The tipsters allegedly said the two had been “practically living together” before she went on ABC’s dating show.

Casey told Harrison that she’d broken up with Michael a year ago because he didn’t want to get married, and the couple later got back together. She denied that they were still in a relationship. Casey did, however, fess up to hoping that Michael would have a change of heart when it came to marrying her.

“You don’t want to be in love with Michael but you are?” Harrison asked her.

“Yeah,” she replied quietly.

When reached by phone Tuesday morning, Casey said she couldn’t discuss the matter because “I’m not sure if I’m allowed to talk to the media.”

The Kansas native and Arizona State University grad confirmed that she lived in Chicago from 2008 until last summer.

The former waitress at Chicago’s Sunda restaurant lists her profession on her LinkedIn profile as a trading assistant at Patak’s company, Topstep. She said Tuesday that she no longer lives or works in Chicago.

Bachelor Ben Flajnik clearly wasn’t thrilled when Casey copped to harboring feelings for Michael.

“The heart wants what the heart wants,” Ben told her before he sent her packing.

An extremely weepy Casey left the show not in the traditional limo but in a minivan.

“I felt bad for her,” said Casey’s former employer Juan Rios, a southwest suburban broker and head of JUA Options.

Rios never saw Casey and Michael together, but he said he heard through the grapevine that she had wanted to marry him and he wouldn’t commit.

“I believed her when she said that last night,” Rios said.

Harrison took to his “Bachelor” blog Tuesday to defend how the reality TV program dealt with the debacle:

“In the end, it was right for Casey to leave the show,” Harrison wrote. “Whether she’s in love with her old boyfriend or not is and was irrelevant. It’s very clear she isn’t in the right state of mind to find love with Ben right now. I’m glad I stepped in and talked to her, and over all I’m happy with how we handled the situation.”

Harrison also shed some light on his motives for calling out Casey:

“I’ve said before that one thing I regretted during Ashley’s season is not going further and telling her more about Bentley and his intentions,” Harrison wrote, referring to last season’s “Bachelorette.” “I wasn’t going to let that happen again.”

Lori Rackl / TV Critic

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