Former UFC Champ Jon Jones Set for Sept. 29 Plea Hearing in Albuquerque

By Tristen Critchfield Sep 22, 2015
Jon Jones will appear in court on Sept. 29. | Mike Sloan/

Jon Jones will appear before a judge next week to enter a plea on a felony charge from his alleged involvement in a hit-and-run earlier this year.

The former UFC light heavyweight champion will have a plea hearing on Sept. 29 before Judge Charles W. Brown in Albuquerque, N.M.’s Second Judicial District Court at 8:30 a.m. MT, according to state court documents. Jones is facing a felony charge of leaving the scene of an accident involving great bodily harm or death. The maximum sentence for the charge is three years in jail plus fines.

It will be Jones’ first time in court since April. His case was transferred from Albuquerque Metropolitan Court to district court earlier this month “on the stipulation of the parties for the entries of a pre-indictment plea.” was the first to report that Jones’ legal team was positioning him for a potential plea deal. The case was delayed for several months as prosecutors attempted to gather evidence. Since Jones’ case has been moved to district court, he will not have to appear before a grand jury.

Jones was arrested in April for leaving the scene of a hit-and-run. According to an Albuquerque Police Department Arrest warrant, Jones ran a red light and crashed a rented Buick SUV into another car driven by a pregnant woman on April 26. Jones then allegedly left the car before returning to grab a handful of cash and fleeing the scene again. The driver of the car with which Jones collided, Vanessa Sonnenburg, suffered a broken arm, which elevated the charge against the fighter from a misdemeanor to a felony. Police found a pipe containing marijuana in the car, as well as documents identifying Jones.

Jones was suspended indefinitely by the UFC and stripped of the 205-pound belt after the arrest. Daniel Cormier defeated Anthony Johnson at UFC 187 on May 23 to capture the vacant light heavyweight title.


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