By: Jamie Penick, MMATorch Editor-in-Chief
UFC Light Heavyweight Champion Jon Jones was arrested at 5:02AM ET this morning in Binghamton, New York, on suspicion of DUI after he drove his Bentley into a pole, suffering minor injuries.
TMZ.com first reported the arrest this afternoon, which has subsequently been confirmed by his management team at First Round Management in a statement distributed to media outlets by his manager, Malki Kawa.
“I can confirm that Jon Jones was arrested early this morning on suspicion of DUI,” the statement read. “While the facts of this situation are still being gathered and situated, First Round Management fully supports Jon and we are asking for fans and media to respect the privacy of Jon and his family during this time.”
Things are still being pieced together, but the Broome County Sheriff’s Office – in comments made to MMAFighting.com – confirmed the exact time of the arrest, as well as the fact that Jones had suffered minor injuries. He did walk away from the accident, though it’s not known for sure at this time whether he had any passengers in the vehicle with him. The vehicle was described as “totaled” following the accident.
Jones was released this morning when his mother posted bond, and more information will come as it is learned.
Penick’s Analysis: I’ll expand upon this a little later on, but this is immensely disappointing, if completely unsurprising news. Jones, and to an extent the UFC, have tried to put forth this facade of a squeaky clean 24-year-old phenom trying to be the best professional that he can be en route to being the greatest fighter in the world. Perhaps that’s just not who he is, and this plays into the feeling many have gotten regarding Jones’ persona. He’s been labeled as fake, and many feel there’s a disconnect between who he is and who he portrays in public. That’s not to say he’s a bad person by any means, but this was an incredibly selfish and reckless act, and everyone can only be thankful that no one was injured or worse.
UPDATE: UFC President Dana White sent a text to TMZ commenting on the news, saying simply “Wow, I guess it’s not my week is it?