Wednesday, February 24, 2021

Former KU basketball player Silvio De Sousa applies for diversion in aggravated battery case

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.


Former University of Kansas basketball player Silvio De Sousa has applied to go on diversion for a charge of aggravated battery, his attorney Hatem Chahine said Wednesday.

De Sousa appeared in Douglas County District Court on Wednesday with Chahine through an online video conference. Chahine told Judge Sally Pokorny that he and De Sousa will meet with prosecutors next month to continue discussions on a possible diversion agreement. Chahine told the Journal-World after the hearing De Sousa originally applied for the diversion in January.

A diversion is a process whereby someone accused of a crime is “diverted” from the usual legal procedures and instead completes the terms of an agreement, which may include some sort of rehabilitation program or fine. If the program is successfully completed, the criminal charges could be dropped.

“The parties are still trying to work out some options,” Chahine said. “With regards to if it will be resolved by diversion, I don’t have that answer yet. We have applied and the parties are still negotiating an outcome,” he added.

De Sousa’s next court date is scheduled for March 31. He was formally charged with aggravated battery during a hearing in December.

As the Journal-World previously reported, the probable-cause affidavit supporting the charge alleged that De Sousa struck a man who told him to “shut the (expletive) up” around 2:30 a.m. on Jan. 1, 2020, outside Brother’s Bar and Grill, 1105 Massachusetts St. Despite multiple surgeries, the man lost vision in one eye after the altercation, according to the affidavit.

De Sousa, speaking with police on Oct. 15, reportedly said that while he and his friends were waiting for an Uber ride 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.

Allegations in affidavits have not been proven in court, and defendants in criminal cases should be presumed not guilty unless they are convicted.

As the Journal-World has reported, De Sousa announced his decision to leave the basketball team for “personal reasons” on Oct. 16.


Bryce Landon 1 year, 9 months ago

It's too bad he couldn't keep his nose clean, especially after all the trouble we went to to get him reinstated from that ridiculous NCAA suspension. We could have used his services this year in the frontcourt, or else we'd have a better record than 17-8.

Bob Zielinski 1 year, 9 months ago

Diversion should not be an option with such a lack of honesty. The man's injury speaks for itself, loss of vision in one eye. Clearly there was more than 'a swat' or a 'hit on the cheek' that took place here. A judge should not grant any form of diversion if Silvio can not even be honest about what happened.

The fact he is lying about the incident is an indication of further guilt.

Jonathan Allison 1 year, 9 months ago

"an eye for an eye leaves the whole world blind." Ghandi

I hate that the other guy lost vision in his eye, that's a terrible price to pay for a fight. We clearly don't know the whole story and what parts of the story are true. I tend to think that the legal proceeding should play out, be it through granting diversion or through criminal court and sentencing (if it comes to that). Innocent until proven guilty...

Justice is blind.

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