Top UFC featherweight Chad Mendes is being sought in connection to 40-man bar fight that occurred last Saturday in Mendes’s hometown of Hanford, California. Mendes is accused of sucker punching a patron in front of police officers and then fleeing the scene. Officials say they have been unable to reach Mendes since the incident.
According to the Handford Sentinel, local police were apparently called in response to a disturbance outside of a bar. While waiting for backup, the fight grew to include around 40 people. Police recognized Mendes as he allegedly grew verbally abusive towards the officiers before returning to the bar and sucker punching a patron in front of the officers. Officers then engaged in a long foot chase before Mendes eluded the officers.
Hanford Assistant Sheriff Dave Putnam spoke about the incident, stating:
“If we don’t speak with him by Monday, then we’ll request that the District Attorney’s Office file charges against him. Then we can pick him up on an arrest warrant. With his training as a professional fighter, he could be looking at a charge of assault with a deadly weapon,” Putnam said. “That’s something the District Attorney’s Office will have to weigh out when they make their filing decision.”
Mendes was last in action at UFC 148 where he destroyed Cody McKenzie in the opening minute of their battle. While Mendes has reportedly be unreachable according to authorities, the fighter has been very active on his verified twitter account. While he has not mentioned the incident, he has alluded to traveling for training and personal reasons in the last week.