Phil Baroni, a combat sports veteran of multiple disciplines, has been arrested in San Pancho, Mexico for the alleged murder of his girlfriend.
The Tribuna De La Bahia, a news outlet local to the incident, first reported that police arrived at Baroni’s hotel room to find a naked woman on the bed, covered by a sheet. She was bruised, bloodied and had marks suggesting she had been beaten. She was pronounced dead at the scene.
— The MMA Media (@The_MMA_Media) January 3, 2023
Baroni reportedly told police he was under the influence of drugs and alcohol when his girlfriend admitted to cheating in the midst of an argument. He claims he pushed her into the shower where she hit her head. Baroni then says he helped her to the bed and left the room to meet her request for cigarettes and beer. He found her unresponsive upon his return and alerted the police. Baroni was arrested for the murder, and a full investigation is underway to determine what exactly happened.
Baroni has ties to violent incidents against women in the past. He was vocal in support of his student Jonathan “War Machine” Koppenhaver when he was convicted of the rape and brutal assault of his ex-girlfriend Christy Mack and the assault of her then-boyfriend. Baroni believes his stance on this issue was the reason he was released from Bellator, but he continued to attend court with War Machine and visits him in prison to this day. He even recently posted a picture of them together, with the caption “gzuphoesdown”.
Phil Baroni officially retired from competition in 2021 but hasn’t fought since his first-round submission loss to Sai Wang in September 2019. He is most known for his spells in the UFC but only managed three victories in ten appearances for them. He also fought in PRIDE, Bellator, ONE, Strikeforce, and others—as well as competing in kickboxing, and bare-knuckle boxing. He amassed an MMA record of 16-19, and lost his only bare-knuckle bout to Chris Leben by knockout in the first round.