Jon Jones is once again defending himself against legal charges as well as the court of public opinion after he was hit with a misdemeanor battery charge in New Mexico.
The embattled UFC light heavyweight champion has faced a myriad of legal issues in recent years including a hit-and-run accident where Jones left the scene after causing a crash involving two other motorists, one of whom was pregnant at the time.
This latest issue sprung up this past weekend when Jones was notified of a warrant on a battery charge based on allegations made by a waitress at a gentlemen’s club in New Mexico. The waitress claimed that Jones grabbed her, slapped her, and touched her inappropriately during his visit to the club back in April.
Jones has denied all charges with his attorney saying the accusations against him are patently “false”.
Regardless, Jones has once again found himself in the crosshairs of more legal entanglements after his career has been stalled several times by similar situations including a past DUI as well as the hit-and-run accident that cost him the light heavyweight title.
For his part, UFC president Dana White says he hasn’t spoken to Jones about the incident but officials have reached out to him to discuss the situation. At this point, White admits nothing surprises him regarding Jones’ actions outside the cage because unfortunately situations like these have become the norm for him.
“I haven’t talked to him but my guys have. Listen, there’s two sides to the story and the truth is somewhere in the middle I’m sure. I don’t know. I’m numb to this s—t now,” White said during a media scrum in Las Vegas on Wednesday. “It’s like it doesn’t phase me anymore. Any time we do a fight with Jon I’m wondering if it’s going to be his last. It’s got nothing to do with money, it’s what’s going to happen outside the Octagon. I don’t ever have to worry about what’s going to happen inside the Octagon with Jon Jones. He’s the best.
“If you look at his lifestyle that he has lived the last seven, eight years of his life, and what he comes in that Octagon and does. He just fought Thiago [Santos], who is a f—king animal and wants everything that Jon Jones has, stood in there, I don’t know if I’ve ever heard of more damage to one knee in my life, fought was still kicking with one leg and Jon Jones beat him. It’s unbelievable how good Jon Jones really is but the minute he steps out of the Octagon, you never know what’s going to happen.”
White admits that Jones has issues to deal with right now because of this latest battery charge but he didn’t say if that would affect the UFC booking the light heavyweight champion for his next fight.
Jones has said he wanted to return to action in either November or December to defend his title, and while it’s not likely the battery charge would result in jail time, he could still be cited under the UFC’s Athlete Code of Conduct policy for behavior detrimental to the promotion.
“He’s in trouble right now,” White stated. “Every time he steps out of the Octagon, what’s going to happen? What’s going to happen?”