Via attacker pleads guilty in court

David ViaOn Monday we reported the news that Kenneth Lynn Seagroves, charged in a brutal, unprovoked assault on bluegrass singer/songwriter David Via in 2013, would face trial in the term that started this week in Burke County, NC.

The attack struck all concerned as odd and arbitrary, with the assailant jumping Via while standing on the porch where he was about to perform at a house concert. He was knocked from the porch and struck the front of his head against a truck bumper while falling, causing extensive facial damage and a concussion.

Seagroves was charged with the felony of Assault Inflicting Serious Injury, the felony of Assault with a Deadly Weapon (his truck), and the misdemeanor of Communicating Threats (threatening to run over Via and others present).

Morganton attorney Richard Avery, a friend of David’s and a consultant in this case, gave us a recap of the resolution of these charges.

“Your readers will be interested to learn that in the case against David Via’s attacker the Defendant pled guilty to all counts. Superior Court Judge Robert Ervin gave him a suspended sentence and placed him on supervised probation for thirty (30) months. He was also ordered to pay Via $8,000.00 in restitution in addition to some other conditions.

Speaking to me about the assault, David said the following:

‘It was the worst thing I’ve ever been through. And it’s still not over. My hope is that the bone in the front of my face and sinus cavity grows back thick enough to put in implants….And it still causes me a lot of pain. And because of me losing my memory I pretty much had to stop playing for a while.’

David lost 3 teeth in the attack and had to undergo surgery to remove one from his sinus cavity. He said that ‘…about 5 teeth on the top and part of my jaw was moved to the middle of my mouth so I could not close my mouth. And there were 4 or 5 teeth very loose on the bottom. All my teeth left had to be wired in place.’

David is very satisfied with the outcome of the case. He is very grateful for the help of the Burke County Sheriff’s Department and the District Attorney’s office. He is moving on with life and playing as often as possible.”

This is wonderful news for David, and we hope to learn of his continued healing.

It sounds like Mr. Seagroves got off with a fairly light sentence given the randomness and viciousness of the battery he committed. Hopefully David’s restitution will be paid in full and he can truly move on from this unfortunate episode.

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About the Author

John Lawless

John had served as primary author and editor for The Bluegrass Blog from its launch in 2006 until being folded into Bluegrass Today in September of 2011. He continues in that capacity here, managing a strong team of columnists and correspondents.