Tuesday, November 10, 2020

Affidavit alleges Silvio De Sousa hit man who told him to shut up; man lost vision in one eye

Kansas forward Silvio De Sousa (22) watches from the bench during the second half of an exhibition, Thursday, Oct. 25, 2018 at Allen Fieldhouse.

Kansas forward Silvio De Sousa (22) watches from the bench during the second half of an exhibition, Thursday, Oct. 25, 2018 at Allen Fieldhouse.


A man has reportedly lost vision in his left eye after an alleged altercation with former University of Kansas basketball player Silvio De Sousa, according to court documents.

De Sousa, 22, is facing a charge of aggravated battery, a level-5 or midlevel-severity felony, in connection with an alleged incident that occurred at 2:36 a.m. Jan. 1 outside a Lawrence bar.

An affidavit supporting the charge says that a man told Lawrence police that he heard a man — later identified as De Sousa — arguing with two women outside Brothers Bar & Grill, 1105 Massachusetts St., and he told De Sousa to “shut the (expletive) up.” The man said De Sousa then punched him with a closed right fist.

Kansas coach Bill Self told the Journal-World Oct. 28 that De Sousa — who announced his decision to leave the team on Oct. 16 — was not aware of the details from that incident “until a couple weeks ago.”

“These allegations were surprising to Silvio, as they were to us,” Self said at that time. “Once we discussed the details, he decided it was in his best interest to opt out and focus on this matter. We mutually agreed that was the best course of action.”

Allegations in affidavits have not been proved in court. Defendants in criminal cases should be presumed not guilty unless and until they are convicted.

According to the affidavit, the alleged victim — face bloodied — found an officer at Lawrence's hospital around 2:40 a.m. Jan. 1. He was later transferred to another area hospital for surgery to try to repair his left eye and orbital area, but first gave police his account of the events.

The man reportedly said he stepped outside the bar because he was hot. He said he then heard two women arguing with a man, whom the doorman and video surveillance later identified as De Sousa, and told the man to “shut the (expletive) up.” He said he fell to one knee when De Sousa then struck him in the eye with his fist; when he stood up, De Sousa was being held back by others.

The man’s mother later told police that he is mildly autistic and she was his legal guardian, according to the affidavit. She said the man has been diagnosed with pervasive developmental disorder, which is under the larger umbrella of autism. In August, the mother said a doctor had confirmed that the man would not regain vision in his left eye despite multiple doctor visits and surgeries, according to the affidavit.

The doorman who was working at Brothers the night of Jan. 1 told police he had seen De Sousa slap or strike the man on the back of his head twice while the man was leaning against a parking meter or light pole, according to the affidavit.

Lawrence police Detective M.T. Brown wrote in the affidavit that he had spoken with several other witnesses between January and September who said they saw De Sousa strike the alleged victim with an open hand.

De Sousa allegedly spoke with Brown and Detective Lance Flachsbarth himself on Oct. 15 — the day before he announced his decision to leave the team — and told them that while he and his friends were waiting for an Uber outside the bar, a man had become “verbally abusive” to one of De Sousa’s friends.

De Sousa reportedly said he had “swatted” at the man but missed him the first time, then did it again and struck him in his cheek. He told the detectives that the man did not fall when he was struck, and that when he left, the man wasn’t bleeding, according to the affidavit.

Detectives told De Sousa that other witnesses’ accounts contradicted his statement; he said nothing further after that, according to the affidavit.

De Sousa is scheduled to appear in court for a first appearance, where he will be formally charged, on Dec. 17.

The affidavit says that Lawrence attorney Hatem Chahine is representing De Sousa, but Chahine could not immediately be reached for comment Tuesday. Neither Chahine nor any attorney had entered a formal appearance in the case as of Tuesday, according to online court records.


Dane Pratt 2 years ago

Glad he's off the team but this happened under Bill's watch. Too many incidents and allegations surrounding this program. The perception outside of Lawrence is, KU runs a dirty program.

Keith Gellar 2 years ago

i've said it before and i'll say it again- This is due to Caliparization of Bill Self. By the end of his term, he will be known as Bill Calipari.

Lance Hobson 2 years ago

He’s the worst thing to happen to KU since Lew Perkins. And this incident happened before the KState fight. What a turd.

Keith Gellar 2 years ago

Morris twins did much worse, but their jerseys were hung in the rafters. Lets face it - its all about what can you do for me now. Silvio didn't fit Self's plan and was expendable.

Dirk Medema 2 years ago

Glad there is a legal process so that perceptions and allegations don’t reign supreme - except in the darkness.

Keith Gellar 2 years ago

“These allegations were surprising to Silvio, as they were to us,” Self said at that time.

HAHA...i know Self has to say this, but we all know this isn't the case. In small towns like Lawrence, if a high profile KU players gets arrested - you believe no one reaches out to Self? Self knew this all long. Wonder if they were simply trying to settle it but looks like it didn't work.

Everyone here is bashing Slivio. What about Self? Isn't he accountable for the program and players. Once again, the KU faithful just give him a pass. SMH!

Todd Hill 2 years ago

Not sure he got arrested. Article only says he spoke to detectives on Oct 15th. Silvio has not been formally charged, yet.

Keith Gellar 2 years ago

Don't matter. this was a serious enough offence with plenty of witnesses. with all the issues KU Bball has faced, you think Self and staff don't have more eyes on these players? if not - then that is on Self as well. I can understand if this incident occurred in a different state, but if this is going down in your back yard and you don't hear about it for months - something don't smell right.

Shannon Gustafson 2 years ago

I think you're making a lot of assumptions that you can't back up with facts.

While Lawrence is a small town, the truth is there was not any hint of this happening prior to it hitting the papers. NOBODY in town was talking about it, nobody mentioned anything on social media or any KU forums about a player being involved in a fight, etc. So while it's normally true that word gets out when things like this happen in Lawrence, it was not the case here. Not sure if it's because there weren't many witnesses and those that did see it weren't talkers, or if it's because it took so long before the victim pressed charges, or what. Bottom line is, if the police didn't talk to Silvio for months (so he assumed it was over with), the victim didn't press charges for months, and none of the witnesses were talking about it, how would Bill know about it unless he was outside that bar at 2am?

Edwin Hailey 2 years ago

I think the thing to remember is these players are adults and while Bill Self and staff are responsible for what happens on the court, they are not responsible for the actions of these adults when they make poor life choices off the court. Only in college, folks like to point to coaches when an adult makes bad choices. If they are in the NBA, NFL, etc. We don't blame the coaches, we appropriately blame the stupid decisions the player makes off the court.

Commenting has been disabled for this item.