Suspects in Dave Brainard Assault Case Say Producer Was ‘Hurt Accidentally’
A lawyer for the man charged with felony aggravated assault against well-known producer Dave Brainard says his client was acting in self-defense.
Dustin Hargrove was charged after the late-September incident in Nashville. The police report describes him and his wife Nichole Hargrove as allegedly assaulting Brainard and his friend Deborah DeLoach. Dustin Hargrove reportedly choked Brainard until he lost consciousness and fell. Brainard suffered severe facial injuries and required surgery.
Nashville attorney Mark Scruggs tells a different story. In an interview with The Tennessean, he claims Brainard and DeLoach started the confrontation.
After the Hargroves' car nearly hit them, the attorney says DeLoach wouldn’t get out of the way of the car and that she started shouting at the Hargroves. Scruggs says Nichole Hargrove got out of the vehicle to get her to move and Dustin Hargrove opened his door to break up the fight, which is when Brainard allegedly confronted him.
The producer’s injuries came after he fell and hit his jaw, according to Scruggs. Dustin Hargrove thought Brainard was drunk and is asking the judge to release Brainard’s medical records. The district attorney on the case says this request is just an attempt to delay the process.
"He had no idea Brainard had been injured so badly," Scruggs tells the newspaper. In addition to Dustin Hargrove's charges, Nichole Hargrove was charged with misdemeanor assault.
The case was set to go to a preliminary hearing on Jan. 27. It's not clear if this request will delay the start of proceedings — Judge Casey Moreland is expected to rule on the request on Thursday (Dec. 17).
Brainard is a well-known producer who has worked with Jamey Johnson and Jerrod Niemann. He also produced Brandy Clark‘s 12 Stories album. The Hargroves turned themselves in on Oct. 6, more than a week after the Sept. 27 incident on Demonbreun in Nashville.
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