Mixed martial arts promoters Christos Piliafas and Scott DiPonio were shocked to learn that one of their fighters was a suspect in the holdup of a Michigan gun shop this week.
After all, it was only two weeks ago that they raised more than $1,000 to help the amateur heavyweight's family pay for his funeral.
Charles Rowan, 25, didn't die in a February car wreck while en route to his fifth bout, as his girlfriend, Rosalinda Martinez, claimed that night, according to DiPonio. The couple and a friend, Michael Bowman, were in a Gladwin courtroom Friday to hear the charges against them: armed robbery and assault with intent to murder. Each requested a court-appointed attorney.
DiPonio, who owns the Diamond D fight team, said he realized they had been duped when he saw Rowan's mug shot on television identifying him as a person of interest in the Monday robbery of Guns and Stuff in Sage Township, about 100 miles southeast of Traverse City. The store's owner, Richard Robinette, was severely beaten and remained in serious but stable condition Friday in a Flint hospital.ESPN