Husband arrested for attacking clerk candidate, other man

Husband arrested for attacking clerk candidate, other man

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KNOXVILLE (WATE) -- The husband of the Democratic candidate for Knox County clerk is charged for assaulting her and another man Tuesday night in a parking lot.

Joshua Vandergriff, 30, is charged with aggravated assault and domestic assault.

He's accused of pulling his wife, Amy Henley Vandergriff, out of her car, throwing her on the ground, then kicking and kneeing her co-worker, David Tyler Gionta, in the Mellow Mushroom parking lot on N. Campbell Station Road around 10:45 p.m.

Court records say Gionta, who works with Henley Vandergriff at Toyota of Knoxville, passed out. 

Vandergriff continued beating him, leaving him bleeding from several cuts and large bumps on his head.

The records also say Henley Vandergriff had scratches and red marks on her arms.

Deputies were told Gionta and Henley Vandergriff had pulled into the parking lot to drop her off at her car after a business meeting.

Gionta was treated at Baptist West Hospital.

"He victimized me last night in public and many months in private," Henley Vandergriff told 6 News Wednesday in a phone interview. 

Joshua Vandergriff says his wife admitted to having an affair with Gionta for months. "When you actually meet the guy she's been hiding and she does it after she swears to you up and down she's not anymore, you don't really think then."

Joshua Vandergriff says he wished the incident hadn't happened and filing separation papers would've been better.

He says he plans to file for divorce from his wife, who he claims has also been violent toward him.

His wife says otherwise, adding, "I will not be the woman that should have left and didn't. I'll take the steps necessary to protect myself and my daughter."

Henley Vandergriff says she plans to file an order of protection against her husband.

Vandergriff is being held in the Knox County Jail on a combined bond of $6,500. He's also not allowed to have any contact with Gionta and must stay off his property.

Henley Vandergriff was fired as a deputy in the Knox County Clerk's Office last fall. She said it happened two weeks after she announced her candidacy for clerk and was politically motivated.

County Clerk Billy Tindell said Henley Vandergriff's termination was due to "her inability to get along with management."

Henley Vandergriff, who works as an accountant for Toyota and Lexus of Knoxville, is running against Republican candidate Foster Arnett in the August election.

She and her husband have a daughter.

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