Police: Fatal 'sucker punch' suspect has violent past, was on probation

By Stacy

NORTH CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCIV) -- The parents of Clint Seymour asked the judge in Charleston County bond court to keep their son's accused killer in jail.

"This is a young man who could turn a bad day in to a good day just by smiling at you. And you miss that," Seymour's father Don Seymour told Judge Linda Lombard Wednesday.

Police charged Dalton Clarke, 24, with involuntary manslaughter after an early-morning fight broke out on King Street, authorities said.

Lombard set Clarke's bond at $500,000.

Police had charged another man in Seymour's death, but they released him Monday. Instead they now believe Clarke threw the fatal punch, police said.

Authorities said Clarke was on probation for drugs at the time of the April incident.

"There have been a number of occasions where this defendant has become physical in bars, establishments and house parties where he's thrown punches and knocked people out intentionally," a detective said in court.

Clarke's attorneys argued the facts were still in dispute and their client was just trying to help a friend.

As for the Seymours, they said they wanted justice and to honor their son's memory. They did that recently with two memorials; one in the Lowcountry and the other in their hometown of Pittsburgh. They said they were blown away by the support.

"I hope every parent loves their child as we loved our child. But not every parent is fortunate to have a child that touches over 500 lives of people who are willing to fly around the country to attend a memorial and speak on his behalf. That's very special. That's a very special person," Don Seymour said.

Clarke's parents said they had no comment.

The Seymours said they started the Clint Seymour "Play Ball" Fund in their son's honor. Donations can be mailed to the fund care of Merrill Lynch at 200 Meeting Street, Charleston, S.C. 29401.