Jon Koppenhaver weighs-in for The Ultimate Fighter 6 Finale. Photo property of the Ultimate Fighting Championship.
Jon “War Machine” Koppenhaver, one of the most popular cast members that have come out of the sixth season of “The Ultimate Fighter”, has been sentenced to three years probation stemming from assault charges after Koppenhaver allegedly attacked a man outside of a San Diego gym.
The news comes from a report by KGTV San Diego, who also reports that Koppenhaver will also be required to continue to seek counseling.
The California native pleaded guilty to the charges after being accused of attacking Darren Zatkow while he was in town visiting a former girlfriend. A witness who took the stand during a trial last year stated that he only saw Koppenhaver hold the man at one point and that it was another person that assaulted him.
Koppenhaver was also facing battery charges but they were dropped after he entered a guilty plea. His felony assault charges were lowered to misdemeanors.
Zatkow publicly stated during the trial that he didn’t want to see Koppenhaver’s career ruined by the charges. He asked for restitution in the form of $2,300, which Koppenhaver has already reportedly paid.
Judge Frank Brown said that Koppenhaver’s situation was not that he would normally feel compassionate about, but also noted that he wanted to give him a second chance.
“No good comes of calling you a felon,” Brown said. “However this also means that I want you to stay out of trouble and lead a good life. You should be thankful towards Mr. Zatkow, he was very compassionate of you.”
If he violates his probation, Koppenhaver will face up to a year in prison. On top of the three years he received, Koppenhaver has been ordered to do thirty hours of community service. While handing out the punishment, Judge Brown gave the line of the week.
“If he can’t pick up a beer can on the freeway, he shouldn’t be fighting,” Brown said.
On the heels of contemplating a potential move to the UFC’s lightweight division, Koppenhaver announced yesterday that will likely return to action this spring at UFC 84 against an opponent yet to be announced.
After losing a unanimous decision to eventual runner-up Tommy Speer during the show, Koppenhaver returned to action at The Ultimate Fighter 6 Finale where he went to war with fellow cast mate Jared Rollins in a fight of the year candidate. Koppenhaver finished Rollins off with strikes late in the third round.