Michael Johnson was noticeably absent for much of 2014, and now we know why.
A day after being announced as the co-main event of UFC Fight Night 61 with Edson Barboza, the promotion has confirmed that Johnson was arrested earlier this year on a domestic dispute charge.
Below is the complete release from the UFC:
“UFC lightweight Michael Johnson was ineligible to compete in the UFC organization following his arrest regarding a domestic dispute in Palm Beach County, Florida in April 2014. Given that the allegations against Johnson constituted a potential violation of the UFC Fighter Conduct Policy, the UFC organization temporarily barred Johnson from competition pending the completion of a third-party investigation.
“Following a thorough review and investigation — including personal interviews with Johnson and independent confirmation that he has satisfied all obligations required by the UFC — Johnson is once again eligible to compete and will begin training for his next fight at UFC Fight Night: Evans vs. Teixeira in Porto Alegre, Brazil. The UFC will continue to monitor Johnson’s status. He must fully comply with the UFC Fighter Conduct Policy and all other contractual and additional obligations in order to continue competing in the UFC.
“All UFC athletes are required to comply with the UFC Fighter Conduct Policy they signed along with their fight contract. The UFC organization will not tolerate any violation of its Fighter Conduct Policy. The organization is committed to thoroughly investigating all allegations and taking the appropriate action when warranted.”
Johnson last competed in March, besting Melvin Guillard in England via decision. In a post on the Palm Beach Sheriff’s official website, it shows Johnson was arrested on April 9 for battery and was released on $1,000 bond.
The UFC released Thiago Silva after a domestic violence arrest and suspended Anthony Johnson following charges being revealed in 2014.