clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

Chael Sonnen charged with felony strangulation over Las Vegas hotel altercation

Chael Sonnen has been hit with 11 charges over an incident that happened in Vegas last year.

Chael Sonnen at the 2021 MMA Awards.
Chael Sonnen at the 2021 MMA Awards.
Photo by Gabe Ginsberg/Getty Images

In December Chael Sonnen was cited over an altercation that allegedly took place inside a Las Vegas hotel room. Initially he was charged with five counts of misdemeanour battery by the Clark County district attorney. However, in January those charges were dismissed.

The charges were dismissed without prejudice, meaning that the district attorney had the power to charge Sonnen again should new information about the incident arise. According to ESPN the district attorney has decided to issue new charges in this case.

The new criminal complaint, which was filed on March 16, charges Sonnen with 11 counts of battery, including felony strangulation. Sonnen is due in court to answer these charges on April 27.

The criminal complaint, obtained by ESPN, claims that Sonnen physically engaged with six people in a hotel room. The complaint further claims that Sonnen strangled one of those people, a man, and that he allegedly used “force of violence upon” a woman by “punching/striking” and pushing her.

The complaint also alleges that Sonnen punched, kicked and used an elbow strike on the other four men in the room.

Sonnen is currently an MMA analyst for ESPN. His most recent appearance in the cage was a loss to Lyoto Machida at Bellator 222 in 2019. The 44-year-old signed for Bellator in 2017 and has fought five times in the promotion, coming up against Fedor Emelianenko, Quinton Jackson, Wanderlei Silva and Tito Ortiz.

During a long tenure in the UFC, Sonnen twice challenged Anderson Silva for the UFC middleweight title. In 2010, he came within minutes of clinching the belt before losing to a late submission from the champion. When they rematched two years later, Silva won by second round TKO.