Man gets 12 years in prison for biting ex-girlfriend’s lip off, ‘leaving mark for next boyfriend’

Credit: DaytonDailyNews

South Carolina Man Sentenced To 12 Years In Prison For Biting Ex-Girlfriend's Lip Off

Credit: DaytonDailyNews

A South Carolina man pleaded guilty Thursday to biting his ex-girlfriend’s lip off when she refused to get back together with him.

Seth Aaron Fleury, 23, of Greenville, said "he was going to leave his mark for (her) next boyfriend," his victim, Kayla Hayes, wrote in an extensive post on her Facebook page.

A judge on Thursday sentenced Fleury to 12 years in prison on a charge of assault and battery of a high and aggravated nature. According to Walter Wilkins, solicitor for South Carolina's 13th Judicial Circuit, Fleury will become eligible for parole after serving at least 85 percent of that sentence.

Wilkins said in a news release that Fleury met with Hayes Oct. 21, 2017, to talk about their failed relationship.

"Mr. Fleury became angry when Ms. Hayes refused to resume the relationship, and he attempted to kiss her," Wilkins said in the release. "She pulled away and he bit down on her bottom lip with such force that her lip was amputated."

Hayes, who shared graphic photos of her injury immediately after it happened and while she was in the hospital, underwent emergency plastic surgery, but the doctors were unable to reattach her lip. Extensive work was required to rebuild her mouth.

"As a result of Mr. Fleury's actions, Ms. Hayes has permanent, serious scarring and a permanent limited range of motion in her mouth," Wilkins said.

Click here to see Hayes’ entire post, which includes photos of her injury. Warning: The photos are graphic in nature. 

Hayes, 19, described the day of the attack as “the day a piece of (her) died.” She recalled feeling her lip being torn away by Fleury’s teeth and him yanking her out of her car so he could use it to flee.

Terrified bystanders rushed to her aid, she said. She recalled a nurse at the hospital trying to lighten the mood by joking that she would no longer have to dress in costume for Halloween to scare people.

"That was when it hit me. This was my new reality," Hayes wrote. "What I just woke up from was no joke. Never a day in my life will I ever wake up living my 'normal' life again."

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Fleury, like many victims of domestic violence, initially blamed herself for what happened.

"But now I have finally realized that I am not at fault," she wrote. "This happened because I chose not to get back together with someone that I knew didn't deserve me, which he proved once again."

Wilkins said he hoped Fleury’s sentence would send a message to abusers.

""This case demonstrates the unique circumstances under which domestic violence occurs, and how quickly these situations can escalate into violence," Wilkins said. "Hopefully this prison sentence will make it clear to both this defendant and other abusers that domestic violence in any fashion will not be tolerated."

Hayes, who is in a new relationship, has since established a Facebook group, Rise Above, to help other women recognize the signs of domestic violence.

One of the mottos of the group is, “Wear your scars as wings.”

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